As the London show draws closer, I had a meeting with Paul to discuss my current body of work, and see if I can hang it up for the show.
I showed Paul my eyes, told him about Fantastic Planet, and the aliens and why I chose to make these paintings. Very Impressed, Paul suggested I expand my paintings, but instead of using canvases, I should use Tondo. In artistic terms, it means a circular canvas or surface used for painting. First, you cut out a circle from a piece of wood, staple a piece of canvas to the top and the back and check if it is secured.
Paul suggests I use Tondo for my next paintings, and hang them on a blue background, which is a reference to the skin tone of the aliens from fantastic planet. It was a really good suggestion, so I decided to go forward with it.
However, before I could make a start, I had to attend a meeting with my exhibition practice group. We talked to Tom about our current plan to hold an intervention at the Pitt Rivers museum, though we haven’t found an artist to collaborate with. Tom suggested that we go to the museum and see if it is a viable location for our intervention.
I went back to my studio, and worked on two new paintings. Together, they are a practice piece for my final Tondo painting. Using a piece of cardboard as a base, I painted two alien eyes onto it, with the intention of cutting them out and sticking them onto a blue painted wall.
I tried to cut them out, but it didn’t go so well. I decided to leave and come back later.
For critical Theory, we did something very different. We took part in three performance exercises. The first one, we each had to evade someone who was “infected”. We had more than one way to keep out of reach: run away, hide or evade. I chose to hide, but soon, I was chosen to be the “infected”. Since my reach is long, I infected at-least 5 or 6 people.
The next exercise, I had to pair up with someone (Darrel) and we each had to walk a wooden beam simultaneously and try to pass each other without falling off the beam. I walked over Darrel, and managed to keep my balance (we were the only ones not to fall off the beam). I am very proud of our accomplishment.
The third exercise was my favourite, as I had to work with Courtney and together, we had to move about the room, blindfolded. We had to feel for anything in front of us, making sure we don’t bump into things and looking out for each other.
The purpose of these performances was to familiarize ourselves with the space, and create a mental picture of it in our heads. The space can be reconstructed in a way that the artist will remember, and heighten expectations.
After theory, I went back to my studio and managed to cut out the eyes with Kate’s help. Afterwards, Kate showed me my test space for Friday, and I must say, I like all the space. Nice and wide, and enough room for all of my paintings.
Later on, I went to my third private viewing with Joslyn. This third viewing was an all female artist show, titled Tickle Torture. Three artists, Maja Ruznic, Kristy luck and Holly Mills, produced a body of work that focuses on colour and the female form. This was great showcase for three young female artists, who each bring something unique to their respective body of work.
Maja Ruznic’s paintings bleed off the canvas, the paint dripping down and mixing in with each other. Her work focuses on the colour, with the figures becoming blurred and melting into the foreground and background. Her work references memory and passage of time.
Kristy Luck’s paintings are similar to Maja’s, being very abstract and hard to discern at first, but her paintings focus on specific parts of the female body, such as teeth, hands and breasts. Holly Mills uses a variety of mediums (drawing, Ink and Watercolour) to make her artwork. While it is not as colourful as Ruznic or Luck’s paintings, Mills work displays the strength of illustration, and conveys a narrative based on her own memories.
Each artist use mark-making in their body of artwork, but use different methods to achieve the desired results.
Out of the of the three, Maja Ruznic’s art is my favourite. It is very similar to Peter MacDonald’s paintings, as they are very psychedelic and seem to melt off the page.
I talked to both Maja and Holly (Kristy couldn’t make it unfortunately) and I asked them questions about their artwork, what they like about the other’s art and what is their favourite piece.
Maja expresses her love of colour, and how she greatly emphasises it in her paintings. She also says that she considers Holly Mills artwork as her favourite among the art that was on display. Holly admits that she was intimidated by the paintings of the others, as well as envious of the bold use of colour in their paintings. However, she also admired their work and was very excited about sharing the museum space with them.
One critic however was more critical of the art that was shown, expressing his disappointment in the oil paintings of Maja and how they don’t truly show the complexity of the oil. However, he still liked the show and admitted that he liked the use of colour in most if the paintings.
Personally, I understand his feelings towards oil paints. I have used oil before and it is not easy to use. Still, I admire the strong use of colour and tones in Maja’s paintings, though they can be difficult to understand.
Luck’s paintings are just as difficult to properly identify at first, being extremely abstract and forcing me to look up the titles (they were all untitled). I known the message behind them, but a clearer narrative and point would make the paintings easier to read.
Mills illustrations are fun and well-crafted, but she should make the narratives for some of her them more clear, as they just come off as random.
Overall, I enjoyed the show, the artists were charming and the paintings were extremely eye-catching. It was great viewing, and a great way to end the day.