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By: Marion Piper
BA (Hons) Fine Art.
To read my blogger profile
# 61 [6 July 2012]
My final post here on Degrees Unedited. What a great experience it has been during the last couple of years to collate my reflections here, within the framework of mutual learning and adventure. One of the unexpected outcomes of writing posts is what happens when one sits down and begins. The process has revealed to me, my own thoughts, connections and ideas. I feel this is a place where authenticity is valued and this has built my confidence in my practice. Thank you.
This week has ended well with notification of my degree result (First Class Honours) and the news that I have been selected by MK Gallery as part of their Project Space Showcase 2012, with the opportunity to show my work for one week of a series of eight week long solo shows by graduates/students from the universities in Buckinghamshire. I have proposed making new work and I shall blog about this over on the other side - Artists Talking
# 60 [5 July 2012]
The work I selected to present for my final presentation was grouped under one title, Tea Garden with a series number. The title begins to develop once the work is started. I search for a word that divides into two, which then opens it up to other readings, as in the previous titles I have used, New Land and Rose Land. This title references the jazz trombone player Jack Teagarden, who I have listened to exclusively whilst making the work. The two words Tea Garden hint at other places and times, another form of movement perhaps.There was a Jack Teagarden album in my childhood home, an early sound memory.
My use of colour is guided by wanting to secure a chord or hum. My work is not about landscape or pattern making neither is it a comment on contemporary urban life. Rather it is about giving visual voice to a practice of seeing, moving and being; the point at which kinaesthetic senses are actively connected to the visual senses and inner experience. Physical and emotional elements have been drawn together into the work and now exist as a witness to place, person and purpose.
The memory of surface and edge connects the work to place and touch, vinyl, melamine, linoleum. Books covered with plastic and cloth. Foil and cellophane sweet wrappers. The surfaces and contents of the homes of my grandparents. These elements contribute to an opening up of 'hard to place' time period, not nostalgia, but a now of then; a double reading, as with listening to live recordings of music, a double listening.
# 59 [3 July 2012]
So, time for some reflections as I bring the blog here on Degrees Unedited to a close later this week
Nearly a month has past since the final assessment, the results are due on Friday. As with other graduating students my unwinding mind has been full of flashbacks to earlier work and tutorials. I have thought more about the first year in the last few weeks that ever. What was I looking for, what was I hoping would happen?
I was advised in my first summative assessment to find out what my work was about. This has been my pursuit in everything I have done, essays, sketchbooks, paintings. I have a compulsion to make work, to make connections with the history of geometric abstraction and to look for echoes and rhythms in the places of today. I have discovered that for me there is a vital link between the act of seeing and the physical awareness of moving. These two activities are deeply satisfied by solitary walking in New York and London. Then there is the outputting of visual information and the physical experience of re-enacting this by painting and drawing in the studio. Walking in the city and working in the studio is a twofold activity. The rhythm of one setting the structure of the other. The architectonic geometry giving playful organisation to the space, the gesture establishing the experience and feeling of physical motion.
Richard Taylor insightfully asked me in the blogger profile in July 2010, about the relevance of movement and the performative element to my practice. I'm not sure that I fully understood the questions then, I feel now that they need continued consideration...
# 58 [7 June 2012]
Bucks New University Fine Art Degree Show 2012 opens later today Private View 6-9pm Come along if you can!
# 57 [13 May 2012]
So the final strokes of paint at uni. Five years of making work have as an undergraduate have ended with a swoop of neon red oil glaze.
One of the first projects I stumbled though in 2007 was to work with a narrative inspired by objects. I tried to recall some my earliest visual memories. Aged five, I was deeply impacted by a huge shimmering, glossy, saturated red monochrome surface. The gable end wall of a house covered in the red leaves of virginia creeper.
Other experiences around the same time, the feel and colour of certain fabric, colour, places, smells and music are early touchpoints that began a personal sensory palette or chord scale that I now play.
# 56 [8 May 2012]
I spent the weekend reading through and tidying up my contextualisation file. This documentation along with a specific section of our presentation at the assessment is not only a very important part of the marking, but a critical area for me. Throughout the course and the research elements of essays and the dissertation, I have relished learning about artists both in history and those practicing now. As with any subject, its history and context is essential to the understanding of what is happening now; and for the reading of meaning.
I like to read monographs of artists to get some depth into their work, I also read a lot of interviews as I love to hear artists grapple with expressing their practice. I am currently reading Brice Marden, an exhibition catalogue from Daros Collection, 2004, edited by Eve Keller and Regula Malin. Also, Various Arrangements, Jamie Sovlin in conversation with Martin Holman, from Shovlin’s current show at Haunch of Venison. I also listened to a recent podcast of Robert Irwin interviewed by Tyler Green.
Somewhere in listening to the ‘voices’ of these artists, are the questions. The answers are relevant only to themselves, really. It is the questions that are inspiring and that provoke thinking. As I’m writing I am reminded that the questions that I have been asked in my previous assessments have been the most helpful spur to progressing the work.
I wonder what questions I shall be asked in my final assessment? Only a couple of weeks until I find out.
# 55 [29 April 2012]
Studio days are flying by and I find it hard to believe it is almost a month since the last post.
My work reflects my interest in my sensory responses to the experience of walking through cities, particularly London and New York. These opportunities give way to a freedom of expression of feeling and thought which is felt. Connecting visual and kinetic information through paintings and drawings of layered line and colour within an improvised geometry, re-enacts the pleasure of the movement and observation of the city avenue.
Much like the act of walking and looking and moving forward I constantly want to find myself in a different place with the painting. I need each time painting to be an experience that has physical progression. I look at the paintings made several months ago and they seem to be from a completely different time zone. Something about my process makes it almost impossible to see or remember how they were made. I unwrapped several today to photograph them and they always surprise me. In the way that we sometimes write things we never expected to or how we look back at blog entries and see ourselves from a different vantage point. From the other side. Photographs of my paintings never really capture the effect of the transparent layers, it flattens them and dulls the light, they need to be seen; is that what it means for them to become a place?
The short statement above is from the degree show catalogue that we are putting together. I have a longer one to write, I have six paintings underway, catalogue and invites to finalise, drawings to get to the framers, doccumentation to edit.
Two weeks until the show build begins.
# 54 [31 March 2012]
Moving around the Dan Graham pavillion in the sunshine at Lisson Gallery was a good way to start Friday. It followed an intense week of prep and a presentation to staff and students (with questions) on studio practice and contextualisation.
Question. Reflect. Précis. Answer.
There is a hyper-real intensity about this stage of the degree. Past discoveries and experiences and future hopes are swirling around and about the current struggles. I feel I have a 1000 paintings that need to be made, perhaps that it why I am relating to drawing at the moment. It enables thoughts, records hunches, brings rhythmic order and facilitates play.
After seeing the work of Jorinde Voight Konnex and Spencer Finch and Dan Graham at Lisson, I spent time at Drawing Room with the work off Franz Erhard Walther, for him, '...drawing is not a static medium but rather a materially fluid generator of work processes, conceptual experiments and imaginative participation.'* The show, and that particular space, was like being in his studio, a place of ongoing investigation.
It feels important to me to not lock things down in my work or to try to 'complete' too much but to create openings.
*Stephanie Straine, Franz Erhard Walther, Drawings- Line/Frame/Action/Drawn Novel. Drawing Room
# 53 [14 March 2012]
Painting. I am working on one painting. Ongoing and continuing across different canvasses, through the books and on paper. It is made fast and slow, hidden and revealed, quiet and loud. Phrases that sway, sequences that echo. Most of the painting is happening away from these surfaces, the repeated humming of a tune; held and then placed, jotted and drawn.
# 52 [13 March 2012]
Space. Managing the working space in the studio has really impacted on the work. Not on the content but the practicalities of making. As I wrote at the begining of the first semester we have less space. I don't really want to write about it as negative issues are just something to work around. Positively perhaps as one uses a rule. However I work in series. I 'feel' the restriction. I am looking forward to working elsewhere. I expect there are other final year students with even less space. I won't mention this again, but I actually think this issue has caused me not to be able to write the blog as it's just been 'there'. Done.
Final year Fine Art student, in my fifth year of part time study. Associate member at Angelika Studios, High Wycombe.