(Current Studies, by blog description (2015-16)) - Click on each label to see corresponding posts!

Wednesday, 18 May 2016

Felling happy, but also a touch of sadness that work is nearly finished!

Well, it's been an interesting day, in fact, the last two days have been quite a challenge in many ways. The challenge since my last blog has been to devise a method of suspending my artefact in such a way that I will be allowed to swivel the object and move its azimuth in a variety of angles.

Much of Monday was spent playing around with ideas in the workshop for an armature to be made out of 2 x 2 pine wood batons.

I wanted an elegant and simple a frame to hold my object, but with sufficient strength to be able to support up to what I calculate to be around 15 kg away from the wall and also at an unusual angle, in such a way that it would give the viewer the appearance of the object floating off the wall and away from it. This was a decision that I had made early on, indeed a few months ago after my original maquette had been hung on the studio wall, after various discussions with my tutors.

I'm pleased to say that the artefact is now up on the wall in its final position ready for assessment, and I'm delighted with the position that the piece occupies, in the gallery space.

The innovative wall fixings, where I have used 8 mm threaded steel bolt, cut to size, but then pushed through a keyhole slot in the galleries boarded walls.

In order to achieve this, I needed to drill out some very neat crucifix shaped slots out of the wooden panel, to enable the 8 mm bolt together with a large washer and wing nut to be slipped through so that the armature can be fitted to the bolt which is then capped off with a 8 mm lock nut. With this combination, I am therefore able to put a very large strain on the wooden panel without it giving way.

This simple yet elegant design of a keyhole fixing is particularly useful for walls that are made of plasterboard or compressed sawdust board (MDF). As it turned out, my fear of the wall being constructed from wood fibre was misplaced, because this particular board, being an outside edge to one of the studio spaces, turned out to be made from plywood. The inherent strength of plywood is much greater than fibreboard or MDF. So whilst I may have overengineered the fixing to the wall, the method of deployment is good enough to work on any type of substrate, should it be required to be moved and re-situated elsewhere.

After some careful deliberation, and making a variety of twists to the artefact on the adjustable A-frame, I have settled for an appropriately aesthetically pleasing angle to the perpendicular, but also I have added in an additional skew towards the front entrance of the gallery space, making a combined twist effectively. I'm really pleased with the appearance of the work now as it genuinely does seem to be floating off the wall as per my original intent.


  • Whilst I am very pleased with the final result of my fragment of a garden gnome, there is a touch of sadness to this work in that I have now finished it! The sadness is there because I have enjoyed making it so much.
  • The lesson to be learned from this, without a doubt, is that one must choose for themselves topics, objects, themes, ideas that deeply connect with you as an individual, and also as you as an artist.
  • I keep coming back to the influence of Anselm Kiefer, and the way that he has manifested so many meanings into every part of his work, and my own artistic exploration is beginning to find its own true signature at last.
  • The artistic signature that I have developed, very much lies in the principal of multiple meanings being buried deep within the object both before the making of it commences but also, and this is crucial, in the special making of the artefact; whether this might be a painting or a sculpture or digital video piece is not important. 
  • What is important is to continue to play throughout the making and tie this with the research through appropriate sources to inspire new ways of thinking.
  • As recognised some time ago, our world is confined in linguistic experience. This is why that introduction to semiotics during my first year was so important. By creating things which can be reinterpreted that do not fit on the linguistic plane, is extremely satisfying. 
  • The intentional drive for unconventional artefacts, which are a non-purposive outcome, together with play, forms the backbone to research through practice. This struggle to detach ourselves from a linguistic interpretation of the world, and put us into a realm that some describe as pre-linguistic (Shipps, S. 2008 pp115), which is hard to explain, until one thinks about the state of mind one might find themselves in, perhaps whilst driving, or playing a sport, or indeed here in this case, making "something special"as a piece of art. This is about being "in the zone" and play does this to you.
  • There is an inbuilt need to "make" all the time.  I need to make, to make meaning, and also to make things, images, sculpture, objects, digital etc.  It is the making that is critical. 
  • Make, Make, Make,  Art, Art, Art; Kunst, Kunst, Kunst!

References in this post;

  • Shipps, S. (2008) (Re-)Thinking Art, a Guide for Beginners; Malden, Massachusetts. Blackwell publishing.  
  • Centre Pompidou, Paris, and Haus der Kunst, Munich.
    http://www.hausderkunst.de/en/agenda/detail/a-history-contemporary-art-from-the-centre-pompidou/ Retrieved 18/05/2016.

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