The show is all go in Germany, unfortunately I’m not there with my fellow handshakers. I sent over a combination of old and new work. The new work I really enjoyed as it was a strip down of all the ideas over the last couple of years- I like to call it ‘unclagger’. To simplify the work to make it clean and strong, whilst still holding all the good stuff.
The Christchurch show looked great. Everyones work is just getting better, from the last show.
I have been in an experimental phase, and as usual like to push my work on. Colour and pattern shows in my work through my choice of fabric, and of course solid blocks of colour from the powder coating. This time I wanted to see if I could play around with the solid colour, so enameling came to mind. To enamel on copper has been really fun, very unpredictable as the 3d object is quite difficult to enamel.
What happened was this unexpected painterly effect, the copper objects where taking on there own life. It reminded me of enamel work in the 60’s and 70’s. I liked the fact that it was resembling something of the past, it became familiar . With the structural object being the focus I decided to use leather as my fabric. It seemed right to use as it reflects a craft from a few decades ago- I’m just reinterpreting it.
My work to date has definitely been moving. Time becomes one of the biggest factors that influences my work. I know when I was studying I would lay out the work, figure out how many days then hours that I would have and start making decisions from that. The end result was that the work became clear and stronger .
These pieces where quite large, I thought that I would really exaggerate the scale as Lucy is always encouraging me to get bolder. The last lot of photo’s I sent Lucy she mentioned this, – ‘And you are conquering your fear of larger size too. Not that it has to be big but if it becomes big out of the working process; just let it happen then.’ Working without an outcome at the beginning is a freeing process to enable the piece to just grow.
I was lucky to be asked to be apart of an exhibition ” Retrospect of Peter Deckers’, so I thought this would be a good opportunity to have some fun and experiment
These photo’s are of some work i made for Masterworks jewellery Box. What happens to the work when you take away the structures. – It became more fun and loose.
Oops time goes by quickly. I have been busy making work for exhibitions and I feel my work has been moving along.
I sent some photo’s to Lucy and got a really great reply-
” You extended your visual possibilities which gives you opportunity to express in a broader way but beware of the decorative one-sidedness in your work. What do you want to experience? If you would regard your pieces as presents, what would you want to give to another person?”
I really had to think about this- I thought my work had interest on both sides- but had not considered it as Lucy had put it. So pencil to paper I began to sketch up ideas thinking of the back and front of pieces. The work I feel has become far more 3 dimensional.
This work was the begining of something I found very interesting. To tell the truth I wasn’t very happy with this piece. It sort of worked but I felt it needed pushing.
The work for Handshake at Masterworks I feel is a lot stronger than the last one. I’m excited by the last piece I made. It is the biggest out of my pieces ( Lucy has been saying SCALE) so finally I made something larger. On the home page of Handshake you can see a video of the exhibition. I will post photo’s of my work very soon.
I have also been playing around with other materials putting down the metal. I found this great piece of rubber in which I drilled holes in. This piece took for ever to make- during the making I did wonder to myself -how long one should work on a piece before you should just put it down! especially if you are not convinced it’s working.
This necklace sits on the body well. You can wear it doubled like the photo or single. I plan to keep working on this idea along side my metal structures.
Below is a series of pieces I made for another exhibition in Sydney. I just wanted to have fun with this work and play with colour as it was for a Christmas show.
The work is finished and now on it’s way very soon to Aussie. When ever I finish work for an exhibition I always have mixed feelings. On one hand you are over the work as you have been processing it so much. Then there’s a since of relief with completion. But the part I enjoy is you look at the work and get excited about what next. How you can take it to the next level.
My last skype to Lucy was to decide on the selection for the show. We are getting a lot better communicating about my work. It get’s tricky when you are just holding up the work, rather than Lucy looking at it in person. Her years of experience really came through on how we looked at the work as a whole, and how three pieces were chosen.
To look at the work and consider- what do you want – what are you thinking when you make- how does the work look together- can you see a progression with the work.
We talked about display as well. This might seem so obvious to others but when Lucy said hang the pendant on the wall and place the necklace and ring on a plinth, because the shape of the necklace will be the same. It was so right.
This necklace was made to hang the pendant. But after talking this through the necklace was to overpowering for the pendant. It’s about not getting to attached to what you have made, and being flexible and trying out other options.
I’ve been given a lovely piece of jewellery from a friend. One of Lucy’s small pin’s. I look at as like a signature. It got me thinking on how I would make a small piece that was recognizable as my signature. I had a perfect opportunity to try this out. I am involved with a group of Auckland jewellers and a side line of the group is a fun blog site called subliminal infiltrations. Sharon Fitness writes it. So I agreed to be the movable exhibition maker. These are simple pin backs with vintage scarfs.
I have been busy in my studio banging out lots of different shapes and forms. Building up a collection of structured pieces . As mentioned before Lucy wanted me to play with scale so the pieces have grown in size. The lampshades I have been looking at for structure have been very inspiring for there form however after making a couple they don’t seem to cross over to the way I have been pulling fabric over. Maybe the stitched panels on fabric lampshades give a more hug shape fitting appearance. I like the fact that this doesn’t easily happen. It gives the structure more attention, and questions about what it is. A space that has an inside which is slightly private and an outside which is very public.
This is a photo of the joint piece between Lucy and myself. Lucy sent it back with the pink tag, and she squeezed the large yellow structure. I sent it of with the purple piece and three grey links with purple fabric through the holes.
This is a sketch of a ring, I thought about having a bit of fun with this idea- making a large rock shape ,covering it up with fabric- a shape of value made up of space and light.
Time is getting on and I feel progress is being made. I have had great emails from Lucy and a successful skype session. To begin with her advise was ‘wearability is not the main focus now; try to experiment a lot first’ I have taken to this and been playing with new ways to attach my fabric structures.
Here are some sketches that I drew for the joint piece.
I have worked on our joint piece and sent it back. Now I have got it back again and ready to work on it again. this has been fun and totally interesting what comes back.
I have made some more copper pieces that I am forming into a necklace. It has been a difficult challenge to figure out how to join the pieces together. However I like the fact that I have set up these in house boundaries when making. It simplifies things for me and I focus on the structures themselves. There use of space and how they work together. Lucy suggested to take photos of the pieces like a sketch, to see how they will look
Another comment that resonated with me was to ‘metaphorically light up the wearer’
I thought today I would add the beginning of my work for this journey. I have been playing around with my structures. Trying to just start the making process. So far Lucy and I are just chatting , the hard work is yet to begin.
This is my studio, it is very basic at the moment, but you would be surprised what can come out of it! I have been sketching my structures so it is fun to make them up. At the moment I am trying to figure out how to attach them- brooch, necklace? This part always needs a lot of thought so the finished piece can feel a sense of balance.