Farnaz Jahani

The Interrupted Beauties   Viewed 23 November 2017

This visual artist comes from Iran but now lives in the US. She employs surface design in her work and cuts and compresses work to create some degree of ‘accidental aesthetic’. 

The idea is to represent the vagracies of life and its fractured path. 

As I am doing the colour section of this unit I’ll comment on the colour use in the above work. 

The use of a quite bright and pure tone palette of blue, red and green contrasts with the background brown and serves to highlight the broken lines down the work. It results in an imperfect irregular edge not unlike the Ikat weaving in my kimono. 

Research Point 1: Colour work of Textile artists and Designers

Voyage Decoration

Marimekko

Mary Katrantzou

Wallace Sewell

Viewed 7 Nov 2017

Viewed 7 Nov 2017


Viewed 7 Nov 2017

Harriet Wallace and Emma Sewell create woven scarves and throws. They have many projects illustrated on their web site that show their methods of colour choice. They take inspiration from the distinctive colour choices in the work of other artists as above, as well as directly referencing the environment to facilitate choice of proportion and colour.  These woven textiles are put to functional use which is something I am very much drawn to. Here they are created using artistic design making, as works of art but then sent out into the world to be worn or sat on or to protect book pages, in a way that has a greater impact on the lives of others, compared to a painting in a gallery.

They are not preserved and protected, but instead used and worn out eventually, to make way for new work.

When I get home I’ll try and remember to insert a photo of the bus seats in Hobart. The fabric is particularly disgusting and I’ll see if I can analyse why.

Cole and Sons

Norma Starszakowna

Paul Smith

Viscous

Ptolemy Mann

Liberty Prints:

Before I came to the outback I looked ahead through the course materials and I saw that I needed to bring some printed fabric to use for colour palettes. While I was in Melbourne I went to a fancy fabric shop called Tessuti fabrics and bought five Liberty Print fabrics. The Liberty company was established by Arthur Liberty in 1875 and was initially a homewares shop dedicated to the popular oriental theme but subsequently branched out to printing the famous liberty prints in England. The prints are an English made product that initially took inspiration from the orient. 

https://www.libertylondon.com/uk/information/the-store/store-heritage.html  Viewed 7 Nov 2017 for some of the information about Liberty.


The fabrics I chose from the Liberty collection to bring with me. 

Lisa Solomon

I came across this artist on textileartist.org which is a great site for all sorts of interviews and information on textile artists. I was looking for knitting and crochet artists because I’d like to think about using knit or crochet as a substrate for some of my work. I’m often thought of also using weave but I need to get past my block that I have in regard to weaving. It’s just the set up and the more complicated equipment used. I balk out even getting my loom out, in contrast to the ultimate simplicity of knitting and crochet – a circular needle or a crochet hook and yarn and I’m ready to create. 



 Images from  http://www.lisasolomon.com/index.html.   Viewed 28 Oct 2017

This example is not actually knitting or crochet but embroidery, but turned out to be my favourite. Her crochet was mostly doilies and not what I was thinking of. I’m looking for a way of crocheting or knitting an organic substrate to further work on. 

Part Two Reflection on the course so far and my evaluation of my works against the assessment criteria. 


I’m really enjoying the course so far and the graded entry into textile work has been good for me. Closely observing my textiles has resulted in many ideas for my own textile work as well as simply seeing interesting lines and detail that had previously gone unnoticed to me. 

I gained a lot from the paper manipulation section of this unit. The ease of manipulating paper made me push harder to entertain ideas about what could be done with textile beyond my cut and paste quilting background.

Similarly attempting to draw with stitch rather than embroidery gave me a new perspective on stitch and freed me from the constraints of regular embroidery stitches. Although I did use some traditional stitches to achieve the effects I wanted, I also realised that I could stitch freely and loosely, simply applying lines and texture with thread rather than thinking of it as embroidery. I tried to relax and to some extent let the stitches fall where they may as the lines do in expressive drawing, rather than keeping rigid control of the stitching. 

I was a bit less happy with my final textile works, than I was doing the paper manipulation and stitching on paper. This often happens to me when I try to work on a single large work that is intended to be a more resolved work. I seem to freeze and am less adventurous in my approach compared to when I am working on “testers”. I am fearless when it comes to experimentation in the lead up to attempting more resolved works, but final works tend to be more contained and often less interesting.  One way I try to get around this is by prolific making of smaller units. Following this I can make choices about inclusive or not of these smaller units directly into the larger work. I have always been drawn to textiles as they allow for this way of working more easily than paper. It would be good for me to try and allow the same freedom and experimentation to come through in my larger individual works.

Evaluation of my works against assessment criteria:

Demonstration of technical and visual skills – Materials at my disposal here have been somewhat limited, but I did plan ahead and bring materials I thought I could use, and as such I believe I was able to make good use of locally sourced and my own materials. I think I have quite good technical skills with wide ranging experimentation and lots of technical ideas. My observational skills and visual awareness have been developing over the course of this unit, but probably more generally over the last few years in the context of my other tertiary visual art study. I have found that I am quite amazed how ideas based on observation are now generally too many rather than too few, and I’m in danger from leaping to one to another without fully resolving anything. As far as design and compositional skills go I am pretty two dimensional in my ideas and often forget to consider depth and interaction between design elements fully. I am not as accomplished with composition and design as I would like to be and tend to think in terms of rule of thirds from photography and containing  geometric design within a frame as in traditional quilting. I have tried to push beyond this a bit with my current works but it is an area I find more difficult. 

Quality of outcome – Here I am pretty dubious. I was not very happy with my final works, although I did manage to improve them to some extent as I went. If I am ruthless I could describe my works as a messy jumble of rag, a kindergarten wall hanging and a tatty scarf.  The series holds together in terms of colour, and has resulted from an application of techniques and ideas previously developed through the course, but I can’t really see much communication of ideas in this work and as such it leaves me a bit cold. Possibly I have overanalysed the inclusion of ideas from the drawings to the point where they do reference the drawings but don’t go further at all to be expressive or meaningful works. 

Demonstration of creativity – I love to experiment and invent new techniques or adapt old ones. This is the area where I feel confident and relaxed, and the area that is most pleasurable to engage in. I’m not sure that these works show much development of a personal voice. They are not expressive, complex, serendipitous organic works which is what I gravitate towards, but I like to think of this as just a start, the tip of the possible iceberg. 

Context – Another area in which I struggle. I often find I want to be making, not researching, and yet when I research I do find that it opens up unimagined possibilities to forward my work. I haven’t done enough research in Part Two, but I hope to get that back on track. I think I can manage critical thinking but at times I also find that I spend too much work time in my head and perhaps I could spend more time thinking on the page, or the fabric. 

Part Two/Research point one – Mending artists

Looking for how they select, apply and alter their chosen materials. 
Lee Mingwei – The Mending Project 2009-2012

http://www.leemingwei.com/projects.php# Viewed 24 Oct 2017

A interactive installation project whereby the artist mends textile articles brought to him by members of the public. Whilst he does this he chats with the owner of the textile and at the end the textile remains connected to its reel of thread on the wall.

The repair is designed to be celebrated and visible and is seen as a gift. The intimate act of mending something that is often seen as an extension of self. Something to be displayed as evidence of a caring gift. 

This artist does not select his textiles for this project but allows self selection by the public participants. He then uses thread that is chosen by the participant to repair the articles, often in a very visible and decorative way. His art is about the gift of mending but also about the connections made during the mending process. 

https://www.mca.com.au/events/mending-project/  Viewed 24 Oct 2017

https://www.mca.com.au/news/2012/09/06/mending-project-update/    Viewed 24 Oct 2017

Kintsugi: 

Ancient Japanese tradition of repairing broken ceramics with gold. 


Image from 

https://www.architecturaldigest.com/story/kintsugi-japanese-art-ceramic-repair     Viewed 7 Nov 2017

Charlotte Bailey:

This artist has adapted Kintsugi to repair fabric covered ceramic pieces with gold embroidery thread.  The idea of highlighting and celebrating the repair really appeals to me. The artistic form is defined by the serendipitous nature of the break or tear as is the artistic repair. It’s a lovely way of allowing chance to reveal unimagined beauty, and one that could readily be applied to textiles. 

I love to incorporate chance in my work because of the unexpected and unimaginable (ie I couldn’t make it up) and the unique work that results. The combination of chance and considered choices results in the most complex and beautiful art in my eyes. 

Vase by Charlotte Bailey below

http://www.thisiscolossal.com/2016/04/embroidery-kintsugi-charlotte-bailey/    Viewed 7 Nov 2017

Threadwork: silks, stitches, beads and cords Effie Mitrofanis

 I realised as I was sewing one of the final textile works for Assignment two, that I was being inspired by Effie Mitrofanis book Threadwork: silks, stitches, beads and cords. I have this book at home but unfortunately not with me here in the outback. The book is written in the context of embroidery but it highlights lush colour and texture with the use of stitch and inclusions. 

I know it was in the back of my mind as I couched nylon ribbon on to my work. 

The Batsford Encyclopaedia of Crafts

Just got this great book in the mail. I found a copy of it in the house we are staying in. There are no libraries or shops to choose from here so I have looked at all the books that the family that have been here for 10 years have collected and was lucky to find this one. 


It has an amazing array of crafts and rather than giving projects for a handful of techniques, it simply outlines techniques to allow you to do with them what you will. 

I’m really excited by this book because normally you buy a book and quickly master the technique and are done with it. I have no interest in following someone else’s pattern. But this book is more of a reference book. If I want a refresher on any technique I can refer to it and I can browse for numerous techniques I’ve never heard of. 

It’s originally published in 1978 and includes information about working with all different types of mediums. I love it.

Joomchi

Joomchi is a Korean technique that is hundreds of years old. It involves layering Korean paper and working it with your hands and water to create a thick and strong paper that can be used in craft and art applications. I’ve ordered the book ‘Joomchi and Beyond’  by Jiyoung Chung.


I have tried Joomchi before and am going to try some for my paper manipulation library. 

A work by Jiyoung Chung

http://www.surfacedesign.org/event/joomchi-and-beyond-the-art-of-korean-papermaking-with-jiyoung-chung/    Viewed 10 September 2017

Tom Civil


When we were passing through Mildura we went to ‘The Art Vault’. They have a residency program and the current residency exhibition was one by Tom Civil. My internet research shows that he does quite a few types of art, but is a printmaker, as evidenced by the above prints that were on display at the exhibition. 

I have chosen these prints to include as they are plant based images for the current exercise. I am attracted to the unusual circular presentation that gives me a sense of looking through a hole to a glimpse of another world, or looking down a microscope.  The linear nature of the images looks like drawing but with a greater variation in quality of line that is possible with a print. I’m not sure but I would think these are etchings. 

Assignment one reflection

Some of what I think of as the stronger works from Project Two

And my favourites from Project Three

      


My initial response to the first assignment was that it was going to constitute a lot of drawing. I have done some drawing at Uni but I found that it can take me ages and I am very often not happy with the result. But looking at the examples given in the course handbook and the suggestions of other artists to look at relaxed me a little, and I realised I didn’t have to produce a huge folio of photo realistic drawing. Instead the exercises took me through a range of different possibilities for drawing and I was reasonably happy with the results. I didn’t feel lost as to where to start as the exercise notes were enough of a push for the ideas to start flowing. Placing limitations on me in terms of colour and trying to represent only a specific feature about the textile gave me the freedom to experiment and I thoroughly enjoyed all the exercises. 

Selection of the textile works was an adventure in itself, and I enjoyed examining each piece closely and imagining the stitcher and the wearer, and what their story may have been. I experimented with a range of drawing techniques using only ink or watercolour, on a variety of papers. I was especially drawn to the line exercise and was amazed at what I could portray using line alone. I was excited by this but ran out of time at this stage to experiment further.

Moving on to Project Three I decided to use watercolour and ink again. I didn’t feel like I had fully explored its potential and wanted to play with the wet media seeping into soft paper. I have mostly used recycled paper and my works are nearly all the same size. I haven’t been too adventurous with composition but I have tried to think about using the whole sheet in some of the works. I love colour and was pleased to be finally using colour. I had a limited palette of watercolours and I attempted to mix the shades of green I saw, but was less successful at this than I would have liked. 

I think I have definitely broadened my drawing skills through these exercises. I tried to think laterally about how I could create work and found that I was never stuck about where to start. In fact the opposite: I had lots of ideas and not enough time to execute them. 

From now on I’m thinking that a lot of my textile work will start with drawing. Taking a source material through a range of manipulations that I subsequently work from, seems like a fun and effective way to develop and test ideas before committing to a final piece. It also serves to provide additional secondary sources of inspiration that would result in a more complex and less representational work. I am looking forward to transferring line into stitch now that my eyes have been opened to the potential of line in drawing.