I'm falling way behind – had a very full week with lots I want to write here but haven't had time (because I've been busy being an artist).
And yesterday on the way home from talking about my work in Schmatte Couture I came off my bike – so I'm typing even more slowly (my wrist is a bit bashed, my knee is even worse but that doesn't effect my typing).
i, finish Nordisk Kunst Plattform dairy
ii, Cy Twombly
iii, Banks Violette
v, Studio rates demand …
As I type this Radio 4's 6pm news is reporting on the forth coming Hirst auction. The news also featured the collapse of Lehman Brothers.
Nordisk Kunst Plattform
Photo-call: At 8.30 precisely the photographer arrives. We all have coffee and talk about the work. She snaps away as I sprinkle silver glitter along the edge of the track.
The rest of the morning was spent making sure the electrical components had survived the budget airline journey. It was only when they initially failed to work that I realised that I had no idea how the transformer worked let alone to repair it. Thankfully it was a very simple problem with the track connector.
There are three rooms – it was always my intention for the model train component to be in the old ticket office (the middle room). This room has two windows that over look the platforms. Although the station has been decommissioned the line itself has actually been upgraded and has new higher speed trains with ticket sellers and conductors on board. The train service from Stavanger to Egersund stops, others like the Oslo and 4.00am Express don’t stop.
I took two series of embroidered handkerchiefs for the other rooms; one ‘baby blue’ series and one ‘gold’. It made visual and narrative sense for the blue series to be in the first room and for the gold series to be in the third room. It took considerably longer than I had imagined to work out how to show the handkerchiefs in the final room. An idea that looked great on paper look awful in reality – thankfully Liz was on hand to offer advice and practical assistance. Although the handkerchiefs are basically square they are all slightly different sizes and some have distinct ‘leanings’, this meant that we had to try various handkerchiefs in various positions to maintain the grid format. Each handkerchief has four possible orientations and nine possible positions in the three be three grid – we started trying to work out the total number of options this offered, we gave up and got on with the job in hand!
Another coat of paint, a nice dinner and a glass of wine.
In the evening we discuss the idea of the Brief Encounter edition. Liz had suggested it weeks ago and although I’d had a few ideas we decided it would be nice to produce it on-site. It also solved a potential transport issue. The installation itself packed and folded into my small suitcase (if it hadn’t been for my concern about the transformer unit I could have taken the whole thing as hand luggage).
The five days I spent at Nordisk Kunst Plattform were a kind of mini-residency. Liz and Kjetil are committed to working with the artists they show. Living with them for nearly a week meant that I had time to work out how best to install the work, it also meant we had time to talk about art, living abroad (Kjetil lived in London for many years and now Liz lives in Norway), and making a living.
At a little after nine in the morning Kjetil came downstairs to the gallery where I was starting to unpack. Jaer Bladet’s arts correspondent wanted a phone interview for the region’s daily newspaper. Liz and Kjetil have worked hard to promote the space and the artists they show, they are recognised as bringing something new and exciting to an area which is best known for it’s significance to the history of Norwegian landscape painting. (The landscape and the light are stunning and I often found myself just staring out over the platforms across the fields towards to the distant but perfectly clear mountain range.)
The Brusand Palette: NKPlattform is known for it’s wallpaper! The interior retains the wallpaper that was put up when it was station and much of the paintwork dates from the same time. Unfortunately some wallpaper was badly damaged by careless telecom workers. In another room a new wall had been hastily thrown up to separate the control room the railway still uses. These areas needed repainting and I was invited to choose the colour. We opted for a colour that already existed, taking our cue from the ceiling in the smaller room. Armed with the fuse unit from the strip-light we headed off to the renowned colour mixer at the hardware stores in the next town (the smear of ceiling paint on the fuse unit was enough for him to create an exact match). And so developed what we came to refer to as the Brusand Palette.
Late afternoon the newspaper calls to say they are sending a photographer at 8.30 the next morning – they want a picture of me with the work.
(Apologies for editing and re-posting this entry – I got things out of synch in the previous one and wanted to get things on the right days! Sorry)