Friday, 26 August 2016

tripoutandinforfilms

A day out to Orford Ness - is always a good day...https://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/orford-ness-national-nature-reserve
Tallulah http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1639084/  the descriptions appear to miss the key elements of the film which depicts several slightly 2D positions through specific experiences women have with relationships, parenting, children and sex.  Hail Cesar really is an excellent film about the film industry using ideas and imagery from the industry to explain and explore within the film itself - the iterative structure has deconstruction at its core - and Clooney is very funny, you can also see him acting whilst acting the idea of acting - what's not to like  http://gb.imdb.com/title/tt0475290/

.

Monday, 22 August 2016

oneexhibitionandsomefilmsaabookandsomegoodnews


101 panels the exhibition at Halesworth Gallery looks good - it's a really nice idea created by Paul Cope working within given parameters to test and bring together 100 people.  http://www.paulcope.com/100_Sq_Ft/  Bastille Day http://www.imdb.com/title/tt2368619/ is an ok serviceable thriller which was all a little too trite in tone for the content it presented. Daniel Radcliffe conveys suitable vulnerability undercover in Imperium but it feels like there is a gap or emptiness at the films core that is trying to be something but not quite reaching - the endless multiple images of neo-Nazi, clan etc is part of the answer/solution. http://www.imdb.com/title/tt4781612/ and then there is now you see me 2 - my excuse is that it was raining. Big Ideas by James Harkin from 2008 it's a little out of date - it's a way in to understand some fairly recent words created from 2 or more concepts which are combined to embody elements of each idea - something I love. my favourite is slacktivism (see it is a little dated). the good news is that a grant application to the Arts Council has been successful  - this matched with support from the Maxwell Centre NanoDTC and NUA means that I will be working with very very small things in a very big way over the next year.....really looking forward to it all, especially sitting in the great spaces in the building! check out http://unfoldingthinking.blogspot.co.uk/ in the coming months. 

Thursday, 18 August 2016

formalfoldingnarrative

continuing to work on folding and creative angles from two positions - formal structures with symmetry and platonic solids and random shapes with the addition of cutting - You the Living - the second part of the trilogy from Roy Andersson is another bleakly beige collection of seemingly unconnected narratives. It really is stunning - Anna played by Jessika Lundberg has a dream sequence after marrying lead singer of a rock band Micke Larsson is truly heart retching and beautiful.  There are so many references and layers to the film that you could watch it over and over with history, politics and art in mind and the connections woven within the films in the trilogy are often slight yet sharp.

Monday, 15 August 2016

bookmachines



some more found things from the past that might become
things in the future. the film a brand
new testament
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt3792960/
is a beautiful re thinking of many things but there is a 'charming' thought around how
the word would be if only women were in charge, although background sky filters
might not be the way to go! 

Sunday, 14 August 2016

travellingfromthepast

over the weekend whilst sorting out a corner of the studio I came across a pile of CDs (remember them!) I found a mass of images of past work - here are some bookworks made after moving from London in the late 80s - a move to a rural area in Lincolnshire. The ideas behind the work came from long walks at Anderby Creek collecting pebbles on the beach and being influenced by a residency which enabled me to work with medieval travelling alter pieces with my own version of the precious. I have no idea who has them or where they are - they were sold in various exhibitions and Chelsea Craft Fair - I hope that the people who have them still enjoy.

Thursday, 11 August 2016

coveringbooks

reviewing the photos from Berlin - here are a couple of architectural textiles for the collection covered buildings. meanwhile if you like your revenge sweet and twisted you have to watch Wild Tales http://www.imdb.com/title/tt3011894/ - 6 stories of people sort of getting it. George Clooney brings it home in Money Monster  http://www.imdb.com/title/tt2241351/  as the film relentlessly moves towards its depressingly obvious conclusion.

I've been doing some reading at the moment which is informing my teaching for next year - both The Man Who Mistook His Wife For A Hat and other clinical tales - Oliver Sacks http://selfdefinition.org/science/25-greatest-science-books-of-all time/18.%20Oliver%20Sacks%20-%20The%20Man%20Who%20Mistook%20His%20Wife%20for%20a%20Hat%20and%20Other%20Clinical%20Tales%20(1985).pdf and Design as Art - Bruno Munari http://www.shawncalvert.com/images/uploads/munari_whatisdesign.pdf are informing the thinking behind a new set of workshops that I hope to run on the textiles design course at NUA. The idea of thinking about the object without context, lateral thinking around brain mapping, the idea of 'open sculptures' in relation to audience, involvement, iterations of organic 'growth' patterns and deconstructing an objects memory. This along with Joseph Beuys thoughts on art making....thinking forms - how we mould our thoughts. spoken forms - how we shape our thoughts into words. social sculpture - how we mould and share the world in which we live: sculpture as a social sculpture. Linking this thinking to an excellent video in the exhibition Das Kapital - it shows a great happening - We Have No Art, a 1967 documentary about Sister Corita Kent, directed by Baylis Glascock. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9HtiQFQTFPM

Tuesday, 9 August 2016

berlinspastisalwaysthere

as anticipated the highlight of the Biennale  was the all engaging work of Jon Rafman. His VR watched over the Brandenburg Gate and square was harrowing and just extraordinary. http://bb9.berlinbiennale.de/participants/rafman/ Cécile B. Evans was a close second - would you do increasingly bad things to make things better - the phrase from the film is still ringing around in my skull. http://bb9.berlinbiennale.de/participants/evans/ Her work explored our relationship to our 'now'. The Biennale really engaged with the issue of how to display digital work physically (beyond a screen) Watching it in a room while sitting floating in water on a wooden platform accentuate this.  Many others including the work of Ryan Trecartin and Lizzie Fitch with their 'adult child play areas' have addressed this, although the work itself continues to perplex and be as confrontational as ever. http://bb9.berlinbiennale.de/participants/fitch/ All the spaces the work was shown in also provided glimpses into Berlin's history and as ever delivered contextual baggage to deconstruct at every turn. The boat ride was a great way to see art and watch Berlin drift by. Last seen in Rome in a show about refugees I have to recommend the work of Halil Altindere - the videos content and text are challenging and give voice to the voiceless. here's his work about Istanbul https://vimeo.com/78545350
There was a monumental show of Carl Andre's work at Staatliche Museen zu Berlin - lots of excellent examples of the 'stuff stacked up following simple repetitive systems' but also some early cut pieces and a selection of the material that he collected which informed the work. http://www.smb.museum/en/exhibitions/detail/carl-andre-sculpture-as-place-1958-2010.html There was also a highly crafted curated visual essay around Joseph Beuys work The Capital Space 1970–1977. This created a web of connections which played off each other. http://www.smb.museum/en/exhibitions/detail/das-kapital.html The huge show of Beuys work shown in a building that used to be a railway station was just awesome. I am a massive fan of the work and ideology and have seen a lot of his work but this blew me away and I felt I understood the work and the man in new and layered ways. Maybe you can only see Beuy's in Germany to really get him. http://www.smb.museum/en/exhibitions/detail/die-sammlungen-the-collections-les-collections.html  Berlin appeared to change and recontextualised every piece I viewed over 4 days.
The Berlinische Galerie Museum of Modern Art had a okayish show of Erwin Wurm's work (the house was fun!) but their permanent collection was astounding and reanimated my love of Naum Gabo. It is a highly curated focused exhibit with excellent examples and as ever the wars and devastation is never far away and in fact frames the curation. They also had an exhibition titled Dada Africa which reframed the connections and made new sense to my understanding.
Of all the 'tourist spaces' visited I was most moved by the holocaust memorial at ..... one starts off chatty and breezily entering low blocks from a bright busy street and then you find yourself engulfed within the regimented towering blocks providing space to get lost but there is also no hiding. The Jewish Museum was less so and felt it was trying too hard to elicit emotion, although the spaces created were physically dynamic.  A quick shout out to the Medical Museum http://www.bmm-charite.de/en/index.html There is a room within the permanent exhibition “On the Trace of Life” that has exhibits similar to those that used to be shown at the Hunterian Museum in London before it was realigned to be 'family friendly'. https://www.rcseng.ac.uk/museums It was life affirming to see such devastating and difficult exhibits.
Berlin itself is such an extraordinary city - it feels as if everywhere you look is being built or refurbished. Trams and trains are efficient and there is no litter on the wide open streets which are full great, cheap places to eat and drink with friendly people - what's not to like.