Sunday, October 27, 2013

Mentor Meeting Notes, October 25th, 2013

     Judy made the comment that before my work was conforming to the house itself, but now it’s breaking out.  It’s more elusive.  There’s violence in the work because of the shattered overlay.  Tearing is one kind of violence.  Burning is another violence.  The violence would be intensified if it were sized up.
     Judy first addressed my fire series combined with transparencies.  She said there is a collision with the sandwiching of the transparencies, a collision of forms where moments are colliding.  This combining is more enigmatic.  There are very interesting vibrations in the synthesis.  It’s more about memory, fire, and the life force.  The plexi-glass acts as a mediator, like a window through which you can look back at something.
     Judy commented that a narrative is always about time, an occurrence, and an event. She said my fire series reads very well left to right.  There is a certain velocity that leads the viewer to the right.  The only image with an active left edge is the first one.  All the others have active right edges that lead the viewer on.  The color flow also has a momentum.  The color begins quite active until there is a blunt stop at the forth image, with its strong horizontals, and then the color dies out.
     Judy said I need to unify the language within these pieces.  The plexi-glass is very slick, while the fire images are very rough.  Also the bases are quite pristine in comparison with the demise of the other.  And the binder clips I used at the top of the plexi-glass are very distracting – perhaps I should use clear plexi screws instead.   Judy liked the distance between the transparencies and the fire images because it made the imagery change as the viewer moved.  But she suggested backing the fire imagery with foam-board or aluminum to make it more rigid and fixed.  She said I should try two things: 1) to make the transparencies large enough to contain the entire fire image, perhaps framed and contained within an actual window, 2) embrace the yin and the yang of the disparateness of the imagery and push it further, and cut away more from the fire imagery that protrudes beyond the plexi, making the edges more active, and allowing interesting shadows to be cast upon the wall.
     Judy also talked quite a bit about my plaster house/ image combinations.  She liked how they referenced “house” without trying to be “house”.  She said where Beverly Buchannan’s work wants to be observed by the viewer, my work looks like it wants to consume the viewer.  She said she could envision them really large.  She said if the plaster in the houses were dark, as opposed to being ghostly white, they would look more like burnt houses.  She said I should make them look more like I feel them to be, visually phenomenological.  She said I need to think about what I want the viewer to feel when they’re in the space.  She said I should consider how I feel when I am looking at Anselm Kiefer’s work.
     Judy talked quite a bit about various materials with which I could construct my shattered “house”, and things I could mix into the plaster or acrylic to add texture and color and add depth of meaning.  She said I must take the cracking and breaking further, and make it my own.  She said to play around with various methods to see what I liked best.
     We talked about these pieces for over three hours, so I never brought out my latest pinhole images.  I think I will wait until I print a select few of my sculpture photos and print them large.  We discussed the work that I had questions about, so I feel good about moving forward.   

Saturday, October 26, 2013

Plaster House Collages Combined with Torn Collages

I keep thinking about how the past and memories become fragmented and reassembled within the present.  I like my torn image assemblages, but they are too accessible.  The past can never be so clearly viewed.  So I took some chicken wire, plater wrap, and small pieces of imagery, and created a house-like overlay for them.

Transparency Composite Series

I was really intrigued by how the transparencies looked in conjunction with my fire series.  By overlaying images of ruin in front of the fire event collages the lines of literalness became blurred the  imagery began to transcend.  So thought I should find a fixed way to try and incorporate the two and make them one.

Pinhole Photos of House Sculptures at the Waterboro House

Saturday, October 5, 2013


     I liked my torn and reassembled images, so I thought I'd try to make some more and create a series.  Since my fire images were taken as a series they were the easiest images for me to assemble in a series.  I made a total of six, and made bases for them out of oak so they could be free standing.  Here is my series; first in two groups of three, and then all together.

     So then I thought I might try to build a skeleton house.  I wanted to see what it would look like if I built a skeletal structural series to stand in front of my fire series.  I cut it out of copper (which is way too shiny as it's hot off the cutting board), but I'm not sure that I like how it mirrors the copper house in the photos.  I think I will try constructing my skeletal structures with other materials, and not make them look so neat and uniform.  But at least it gave me some ideas.  Here it is in front of two of my fire re-pieced images.

     Judy had mentioned trying out transparencies.  I got a couple sizes of transparency film that I could play around with.  Since my pinhole images are made with paper negatives, I thought I should edit them in Photoshop and remove some white (or black, or whatever) from my images to have true transparent space in my film prints.  I made six, of different subjects (to make the best experiment), and then suspended them in front of my six fire assemblages. 

     So this was interesting.  Today I took some film photographs of my transparencies and fire assemblages.  Through the viewfinder they looked very interesting, so I'll be curious to see how they turn out.  I also resized and reprinted my transparencies today to 11" X 14".  I have some 11" X 14" plexiglass sandwiches I made for another project a few years ago, and I thought it would be interesting to see how they worked in relation to each other, and other things, as well as space.