and then it was spring

March 22, 2015

And I wondered just what I had been doing since January…Well, among other things I’ve  been printing and gathering and now I’ve started compiling the books I intend to take with me to Bristol Artists Book Event in April and Turn the Page, Norwich in May.

Today I finally returned the box to the allotment after spending last summer cutting the one in the other or cutting the other into the one on the other….are we all following?!  I also brought one of the full textile prints I had taken of the box and hung it between canes to photograph. I’m making a book of the box prints on paper, these will be housed in a portfolio which should also include one of the stills I took today, to offer a little more context to the piece. It turns out that whilst taking stills my camera is also, without my knowledge (I really should have downloaded the manual) able to take film. So here is a brief preview of what stills may be available!

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box plot printing

September 8, 2014

plot box in printing 1

plot box in printing 2

plot print

I’ve been rolling out the ink, rolling on the ink, laying flat the paper and fabric, smoothing over the surfaces and giving them all a good hard rubbing with a barren and my hands. So far s’okay.

The cotton can take the print much better than the Zercal paper can, lovely as it is. The cotton can get into the dips of the brushstrokes left on the surface from the paint job the box got in one of it’s former lives. The cotton wraps around the box with ease, when I manage to put it on correctly and leaves the box looking extra special.  It reminds me of the post in India, where I am told, all parcels are sewn up inside white cotton fabric, to keep them safe. What a wonderful way to receive parcels, I wonder if the recipient sits with a quick pick taking apart the seams carefully, refolding the fabric and storing it for another day before setting to the contents of their parcel. I would. Like a parcel wrapped and waiting, the wrapping of the box adds to the wonder and tension of the contained unit. I’m still printing and working with the box, I’m also fighting the temptation to leave the fabric on at the end of all the process.

box plot cutting

July 31, 2014

Taking a break from cutting furniture and making the most of some of the slow hot days we’ve had recently I’ve been hiding under a dog rose bush making a new wood cut on the allotment. Working in response to the allotment plot, drawing imagery from my own space and those around me.  With the wider idea of having a contained piece of land to pioneer in mind I’ve been cutting the sides of an old wooden box.

Allotments are wonderful things, affordable and open to most ( I hope) in this world where land is at such a premium and owed by so few. I feel very lucky to be able to have this spot but everyone should be able to have a piece of land to work in some way if they want to. I’m pretty sure that the law still says if there isn’t land enough for allotments you can ask the council for more.

Anyway, here are some photos of the sides of the box, placed in the spots I drew from. Everything is growing so quickly at the moment that the views are not always that easy to recognise, it’s not my cutting skills.

box 3

box1

box2

box5

box4

time spent

July 21, 2014

 

View from Cheetham and Crumpsall Allotments

 

A view into Manchester from Cheetham and Crumpsall Model Allotments. A morning a week was spent working in this lovely setting.

eastern electricity building

Seen whilst walking the river in Norwich. Apparently artist Rory Macbeth painted the entire text of Thomas Moore’s Utopia (44,000 words) on the old Eastern Electricity building. Searching will bring up internal photos too of rooms painted in red text.

Maurice Carlin at Bluecoat

A scroll piece of printing, physically scanned from the floor of the space, made over the duration of The Negligent Eye at the Bluecoat Arts Centre by Maurice Carlin.

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A view from part of the DLA Piper Series: Constellations at Tate Liverpool. The exhibition covers 2 floors and shows work grouped together by association. I enjoyed the opportunity to see the backs of frames and to view many works arranged together within space rather than crammed on a wall.

pond

Plans for a new project come together. Making escape paths out of patterns in a pond with Helen Mather.

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Two small exhibitions of wide reaching projects exploring the Yangtze River in China. At Touchstones in Rochdale, Yan Preston’s work was intimate and communicated directly. Trying to reconnect with her homeland through simple creative processes Yan’s work is physical, performative, poetic and clearly documented. Though Yan’s exhibition at Touchstones is now over (sorry!) her website is well worth a look if you are interested in ‘landscapes, myths and values’. The image above was taken from Corridor 8 where you will find a review of Yan Preston’s show.

In ‘Normal Pool Level’ by Jorge Mañes Rubio at the Chinese Art Centre, Manchester  the artist explored the impact that the monumental Three Gorges Dam had on the Yangtze River and valley. Jorge presents objects collected, adapted and created over his 2 month residency that speak of the industrial processes, cultural shifts and economies he encounters. Presented with photos, drawings and lots of informative texts. This exhibition continues on until September 7th. I have just noticed that earlier in the month both Yan and Jorge shared a discussion at the Chinese Arts Centre, damn. I will get better at this!

Liverpool Central Library

Another weekend in another wonderful library redevelopment, this time Liverpool, where the domed Picton Reading Room and the arching hall of the Hornby Library housed the casts of books and keys made by Aiko Miyanaga and the Artist’s Book exhibition that saw people I know show work alongside that of Picasso and Goya, what a treat.  My favourite time was spent looking at ‘Averting Your Fate’ by Andrew Morrison of Two Wood Press, an excellent use of print block and text.

Holly

Hock

And finally, after 2 years of watching the leaves grow, the flowers come and they don’t seem able to stop. A metre and a half for each year waiting.

Growing growing gone

August 8, 2012

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the Jarden at the plot

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Carnivorous plants at Tatton Flower Show