Not making work for the last two weeks has enabled me to sit back and really think and take the time to analyse my work. What have I made? What is its context? What do I continue working with? What do I take on to the next level for further development? The casting of the foam forms needs further work and time to develop; however the originals and first forms that I began working with are yet to be cast in bronze so I’m unsure and unaware at how they will cast and how the textures and forms will come out from the moulds.
The other element is the filming of the tights and expanding foam, this whole concept needs more time and exploration. Do they stay as objects, as sculptural art works? Is the work object or process? Sculpture or performance? These are the areas of enquiry and investigation that I need to invest the time and work with the film examples.
Foundry Day – Women in the foundry
The experience of working entirely with women in a male dominated environment was invigorating and a refreshing experience; I’ve always been surrounded by men throughout my foundry experience. It was interesting to explore and analyse how women engage with the casting process; the physical activity of the foundry can be challenging at times due to the duration of the set-up and pour. The work is singular, however the process and casting of the work is always a team experience. There is that question of gender and the workplace. From previous experience, I have worked with both men and women when pouring the metal and running the furnace; I fund that ego and ‘sex’ plays it’s role during the entire process. For example, a pour involves a high amount of physical activity, therefore the male feels that they can dominate and are more capable. This isn’t necessarily always the case, however I do find myself questioning whether men think that as women and as a female working in this environment, both past and present of whether men find women capable of working and positioning ourselves in this ‘male associated’ environment and industry. Does this question happen in all foundry settings? Is there a difference, a different atmosphere in a working/industry foundry or a foundry situated in an academic environment?
I find that when I’m in this environment I always wish to prove my abilities and how capable I am to lift tools, pour the metal or run the furnace. Why is this? Therefore I question the process and the object; process art, the experiences of the foundry, it’s particular setting and environment. How can a environment engage with my own practice, primarily my thinking and concepts. What will I pursue next? What work will I produce? The foundry is a male environment, this is a fact; however I wish to explore how? Why? Is this tendency changing? What work are female sculptors producing? Does casting and the foundry have an impact on their practice? These questions are a point of contact at all times.