Thursday 23 September 2010

Inspired by the past

In 2005 I was one of many artists invited to take part in an exhibition called "Inspired by the past." The work each artist exhibited had to have been inspired by artifacts from the University of Cambridge Museum of Archeology and Anthropology department. It was an exciting time and I was able to develop many ideas while looking at the Ritual art of the Ilatmul tribe of Papua New Guinea. There were sculptures, masks and lots of interesting facts about this tribe and it linked in beautifully with my own areas of interest. I set about printing and experimenting coming up with lots of exciting results, so many in fact that I filled a sketch pad with ideas. The page below shows an example.

I looked at the ritual of scarification and the masks which were worn during those ceremonies and I was able to extract quite a lot of information and ideas. So, this week after flicking through my old sketch book I revisited this topic and have been playing around with a design from a sketch of an Awan mask.

The design which I am going to use is developed from the mask above with some of the areas and shapes repeated, as you can see from the design the strong outlines and simple shapes lend themselves well to block printing so, I have made a block

and I will be printing this design onto space dyed cotton, I have used oil sticks to break up the background before I put the print onto it. My only concern at present is that the fabric which I have chosen is a very fine cotton and I will probably have to bond it onto another firmer fabric to get the best results but I am feeling hopeful that it will develop into an interesting project. I have not abandoned the Masai girl in green, I will work on them both.

Tuesday 14 September 2010

Weekend wonder

I had a fabulous time at the weekend with my mates the "Glum Mums". It rained and we were lost for a while in the bogs of Derbyshire but we made it out in the end, covering about 10 miles on Saturday. Some of us climbed rocks, well Claire is the "Wonder Woman" of the group, in no time she reached this spot.

We trekked across dams after being lost in the waterlogged bogs.

but the brilliant landscape and wonderful company made it a really great weekend. My sore muscles are better and I am ready for another one next year.

Wednesday 8 September 2010

Summer is gone

I discovered an old canvas recently which had a sketched Masai girl image onto it. It was the second of two canvas pieces which I started about two years ago. The first was titled Masai girl in green and was commissioned by a friend of the family and can be seen in the following image.

For the past few days I have been working on this second canvas trying to make it as different as possible from the first one. I am using line and pattern to disguise the image of the girl, with my main colour as blue. I have been looking at the artist Hundertwasser and using his style as inspiration.

I am not as happy with it's progress at the moment but the great thing about being an artist is the challenge of solving a problem - when a problem presents itself you have to fix it. The photo above was taken Last night and at an odd angle, I apologise.
Today I worked on it a bit more and well I am not sure what is happening. I have a long way to go with it and will show it's progress. I find it exciting working in a range of media and I am sure this canvas will lead onto a version in fabric.

Tomorrow I am off for the weekend with a group of mums, we call ourselves "The Glum (Glam) Mums. We are going to the peak district for a break from the family, to do some climbing, and most of all have some fun (WOOPEE!), this is an annual event and each year afterwards I pledge to be fitter for the following year, and I never am. I have all the gear and look the part but I am not fit at all, I know that on Sunday when I return I will be hobbling and in pain for a few days but the fun and laughter is worth it. I hope the weather is not too foggy wet or cold.