Field – The City – New ideasPosted: March 12, 2014
After Clare Twomey’s talk I have decided that I want to base my project on making a series of objects which I can place into a public space in the city that people can come across as they are going about their day that will be an unexpected and novel thing that happens and makes their day more interesting or fun. I want to create a vast amount of the same object to the point where they cannot go unnoticed or ignored, and perhaps even take over a space. This is opposite to Jane Edden’s “Post Secrets” instillation in Cardiff (which I talk about as number 8 on my petcha kutcha post), as I want it to be accessible to everybody and easily approachable. I would also ideally like people to interact with my objects, and have some form of play with them, possibly facilitating conversations and interactions with new people. While the play is the main aspect, I would also like the objects to have some form of collectable or desirable aspect to them so that people might steal them in the same way as Clare Twomey’s “Trophy” birds were. There is a certain amount of pride that comes with making an object that is desirable and that people want to take away with them, and I also like the physicality of a piece of work that becomes dispersed but the objects still remain individually. The question is (the most important question), what to make the object.
I originally thought of using the sugar mouse that I used to create wax mice for my subject project, and have cast from a ceramic sugar mouse which I bought in Tent London as I remember it immediately having a desirable quality when I bought it. However, seeing as I would be making it into ceramic (as I feel like ceramic is definitely the best material to use for this idea) I would literally just be copying an object that I bought off another artist, and that seems like an “easy option” without having put any thought into creating an object for myself which is pretty pointless really. While there is a wide precedent for taking objects and re appropriating them in art and using them in your work, that usually involves at the very least a change of material or context, which I don’t think is strong enough here.
I then thought about Lego blocks, as I am currently casting them into bronze and are widely recognised and identifiable as something to be played with. However, I have had great difficulty so far casting them in bronze and I assume I would have the same if not more difficulties casting into ceramic. The main appeal of Lego is that it fits together, and if the underside of the piece doesn’t come out correctly (which has been the most difficult part) then they won’t fit and are going to be disappointing to play with. It was suggested to me that I could make larger Lego blocks that were easier to cast, however then I would need to make a perfect Lego block on a large scale by hand, and I don’t think I could make it perfect enough by hand that it would fit together when replicated.
I then thought about, in the vein of Lego maybe a series of shapes such as Tetris or even just basic shapes such as cubes, triangles, octagons, in a series of shapes and sizes. I have seen several simialr shows of work in various exhibitions (although I can’t remember any of the artists names and don’t have any pictures, irritatingly) which for example have a series of small grey pots which come in a variety of shapes and sizes, with interestingly shaped lids with a bright colour on it with the inside of the pots also being brightly coloured. These lids and pots could then be mixed at matched to create many different combinations which was a surprisingly novel form of entertainment. Perhaps I could do something similar? But I’m not sure how that would lend itself to the idea there being an abundant amount of them, that might become overwhelming if there are too many choices to make.
The main idea that I’m working on right now is making marbles. Marbles are associated with childhood (which is always a bonus being able to tap into people’s nostalgic feelings), and people know that they are objects to be played with. They are small enough to be easily pocketed, and can come in a variety of colours which makes them collectable, and can also be made in ceramic. They are also relatively easy to make, rolling balls of clay into even sizes (or perhaps a press mold?), and I can make a large amount of them which will inhabit an area.