Statement of Intent
Since beginning the foundation, critical analysis and documentation have played a bigger roll in artistic practice. Through these new skills, reflection has highlighted areas for improvement, learning to see what’s missing as well as what’s working. Group discussion has also played a big roll in learning; multiple interpretations and reactions to work informing clearer visual communication, which focuses areas of interest. Tutor input has also lead to more specific and researched terminology; discourse with Anna on the definition of ‘bourgeois’ in modern society led to an understanding that more accurate wording is needed when supporting ideas.
Fine art is a pathway that suits my method of idea generation. Having a flexible brief that gives room for abstracted concepts that combine multiple references from diverse subject matter is very beneficial. Through group crits and tutorials painting has been highlighted as a very effective medium to explore themes; developing a set of motifs and visual language has been achieved whilst on the course. For FMP materiality and iconography, such as road infrastructure with phallic forms, will be a focus alongside classification in painting. Boundaries of what constitutes a painting will be pushed via installation and experimentation with media; a painting could be installed on top of a pedestal, or laid flat on the floor to act as a pedestal for a sculpture.
For FMP I propose to explore Gender through formalism, drawing influence from synchronicity experienced throughout the duration of FMP. Particular areas of interest are colour and the ideas of the Gender Schema, traditionally masculine work environments, Phallic forms found in public spaces and culturally conditioned stereotypes. Taking on the challenge of communicating these lines of enquiry through formalism will push my process as an artist and enable a wider subject matter to enter into finished works.
Exploring Environments & Image Collection
During image selection reoccurring themes emerged; Building sites and materials, skips, street infrastructure and examples of urban plant life. The eye was also drawn to dogs and vehicles. These themes will be investigated further with materials.
Exhibition Visit : What’s up? @ Soho Revue Gallery, April 14 2016 – April 30 2016
Containing many notable young painters such as Mark Flood and Peter Sutherland, What’s Up? stood out as relevant to FMP and wider painting practice. Multiple visits to the show were made including one trip with fellow students.
Selected works of interest:
Works were picked for their formal qualities and process. The curator, Lawrence Van Hagen, provided a guided tour where he explained the works of interest in more detail.
Peter Sutherland’s photographs printed onto perforated vinyl, which he then sticks onto chipboard, have relevance to both images collected for FMP and building materials. Billy Zane’s dispersed abstractions also share materiality with spray paint, a medium of choice for myself.
Video showing fellow students interacting with Ry David Bradley works
Environment Exploration & Image collection
Images of experimentation with sanding paper, gutter covering and spray paint.
Fellow students Ruby and Afri made suggestions and added to experimentation in studio.
Video recordings showing layered movement of gutter covering material: video 1, video 2, video 3
Exhibition Opening Visit: Chelsea UAL MA Interim Show
Two works of interest, again mainly focusing on form and materiality. The use of a balanced road sign and cones to form a new structure; poised at an unusual angle and interlocking to achieve self-support. Sculptural plinths, some phalic, some squat, using multiple materials that instigated a contradiction in perception; although made of solid material the use of a soft tone palette gave the illusion of weightlessness and delicacy.
Selection of screenshots from Instagram
Jerry Saltz, art critic for the New York Times, liked a photo on my Instagram account with the caption ‘Am I art?’. This reinforced a recent change whilst on the foundation to become less assertive and question myself more; allowing others to participate in influencing production of work and lines of inquiry.
Group Crit & Developmental Work
A commission to paint a street scene led to studies on paper involving spray paint gradients and mixed media. These were then showed in tandem with other developmental work for the FMP during a group crit.
Developmental work for FMP:
Three paintings were produced with the aim of testing materials as surface and using only mediums available in the studio; acrylic, paper, tape, chalk pastel and store bought sandpaper.
Fellow students were invited to stick tape down (black, green and pink painting), relinquishing some decision making and control to an external source.
During group critique fondness for the visual impact of the spray can gradients with mixed colour palettes was expressed, highlighting routes of progression. Hanging paintings was also awkward, revealing a potential need to find alternative modes of exhibiting for final show. Attaching colour to a gender was also questioned by the Tutor.
Addressing the Issue of Colour Palette with Regards to Gender
Amongst students there was a consensus for stereotypically masculine and feminine colours. However the tutor continually questioned these generalisations. Attempts to confirm and define a gender colour palette led to referencing MOSCHINO MAN & MOSCHINO WOMAN collection booklets. With blue palettes for male and pink palettes for female this single example of his and hers colours could be used.
Although this was an easy solution it didn’t question the preconceived idea of gender. A trip to the Library to look for critical texts led to the book ‘Postmodern Culture edited and introduced by Hal Foster’. Contained within the book is an essay on Feminism and Postmodernism by Craig Owens. Giving the example of the depictions of a Man and Woman on the Pioneer spacecraft Owens argues that the raised arm of the male is a signifier of privileged values assigned to males in our patriarchal society; He quotes, “The woman is only represented; she is (as always) already spoken for.
An inequality of race should be pointed out here, intersectional feminism is not considered by Owens.
The colour palette for FMP should no longer represent femininity by speaking on behalf of women, nor vice versa for masculinity. A decision to give each member of the class a choice of colour was made, enabling people to speak for themselves, regardless of gender.
Each student choose a colour from the Montana Black colour chart.
Gallery Visit: Grinding Your Teeth to Keep Out the Wind @ The Sunday Painter 16 April – 14 May 2016
Plastic Memory @ Simon Lee Gallery May 13 – June 18 2016
New Material Experimentation:
The London Brick Co. brick is a reoccurring motif in work; its significance as the building blocks of modern London fits concepts which are heavily informed by locality and life within the city. Having used readymades reclaimed from building sites in the past, taking a mould of the form and creating new bricks from a wider range of materials is a natural progression. A clay cast and plastic vacuum mould can be seen in the images above.
Exhibiting Work: This Concerns Everyone @ Proof London May 5 – May 29 2016
Proof London invited me to exhibit work in a group show. The piece entitled Representation Material Form (RMF) enters into discourse with modes of painting. Depicting a wall, exhibited on top of a dismantled wall, leaning against a wall, the piece also includes material that simultaneously obstructs the viewers gaze whilst allowing physical contact with the painting.
Student Colour Sellection:
List of individual colours picked by students (one per person).
Once the colours arrived students were asked to pick a palette of three spray cans to be faded into a gradient.
Now that colour schemes had been picked the next stage will be painting.
Gallery Visit: Jeff Koons: Now, Newport street Gallery, 18 May – 18 Oct 2016
Professional Practice – Materials, Prep & Process
Having painted using student picked palettes, a personal choice of colours based on harmonies was made for second painting.