form

Ways to make work: Planning or intuiting

It is half a year since I finished studying. As warned by more established friends I am wandering about in hazy, boggy directionless realms, tripping over confusions of ideas and bumping into deadlines. Timelines, proposals, action plans seem forced, their language too stark and linear. So I am accepting my swampy state and slowing down to explore and dream quietly with materials, and time.

I have two works hanging side by side in the studio. They both express what seems to be a recurring theme for me, of combining disparate elements so that the qualities of each are present but together they form a whole that is more than the sum of the parts.  But they were made in quite different ways.

By planning:

Equilateral

For Equilateral I started by choosing a favourite form; a Möbius strip. The width of the kimono fabric and the size of the triangular space in the centre dictated the overall dimensions and so determined the width and length of the piece of hand spun, knitted grey mohair which is the other surface of the quilt. Two different fabrics, quilted together into a form which unites and reveals both surfaces.

Through intuition and chance:

Sometimes a piece evolves unintentionally. From an indigo pot on the go, a piece of silk and a plastic cylinder I made a (very) rough version of pole-wrapped shibori. It went into a pile of fabrics on the table until its mid blue undulations lay next to a warm brown length of layered and stitched fabrics which I’d put together with no end in mind than to  be something to stitch on in the good company of other makers. And now, after a gentle three years, I am putting the final stitches into Two journey to.

Something as simple as observing how I make reassures me that I can continue.

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Wire lace

Another assignment is completed and installed.  It was a process of trial & error, and very low tech (papier mache & wire).

Completed bird-netting armature, before papering over.

Upright armature, overlapping layers of netting.

Testing the paper-covered form on site.

Starting the first panel of wire lace.

By the time I’d done the seventh panel, I’d worked out how to control the tangle.  Next time, I will do fewer, wider panels.

First wire lace panel completed.

Completed wire lace, resting.

Installed under the sheoaks at Gomboc.

Gomboc Sculpture Park and Gallery is in Middle Swan, and the annual sculpture survey opens on June 6th.

Balsa and silk

Tuesday was productive; exciting even.

Five fractal branches

Five fractal branches spiralling up a wall

I tried out the balsa ‘antlers’ (fractals) in sculpture.

The excitement came later, when I unbundled the smelly results of a month in a metal bin:

Unwrapping the storm cloth bundle

After drying and picking most of the debris off, the storm cloth looked like this:

Storm cloth 1 side 1 Storm cloth 1 side 2

The dark curving lines are mould.