Solve et coagula is the description of a stage in the alchemists’ process where everything that has gone before seems to pass away, to disappear into an unrecognisable fluid state then begin to reform into something completely new and original. I have got quite a way behind with blogging about the project and was unable to get to the studio yesterday to reassure myself I was still on track. After tweeting about a few collages and tinkering with the last touches of a couple I was happy things were going to be OK! Of course, playing Talking Heads: Live in Rome very loud in the studio is a pretty good sign that I am cooking on gas! At the end of today I am pleased to say that I have 42 pieces I’m happy with (barring a finishing florish here and there on one or two) and seven under way. That sound good but one is failing to excite me and three are the large ones I have mentioned before that I don’t want to rush! So my reading of the situation is I have 3 pieces to finish off and five new pieces to do in the next 5 days. A piece of cake! With a history of creating a work every day from scratch for two (slightly overlapping) years I see it as no problem to make five pieces to the standard I have set before Christmas.
And this piece? Solve et coagula is number 31 of 50 Collages Before Christmas and it is based on some drawings and photographs of the floor in the gallery I showed in in August. I did a whole body of work about stains on the floor at the gallery I installed #Letter365, the second of those time-based projects mentioned above.