A Time for Reflection

Being away from the studio is always a time for reviewing my practice and current work. Today is such a day, and reflection has given me insight into a number of things. Work is cyclical and directional. The project proposal is taking physical shape and what is emerging is not only according to the latest proposal version but harks back to the original one in which I was looking at the relationship between statuary and sound in the context of mythological ideas.

A second reflection regards the suspended sculpture. This piece has gone through significant changes from Oracle to Icon to its current iteration just a couple of days ago. What I am thinking of now incorporates elements of various ideas including horizontality, sound, cave systems, molecular structures and the form of Icon and Oracle. It is more dynamic and presents a number of challenges in its assemblage and display. It is a matter of stability which needs careful thinking regarding the unit parts and their fitting together.

I have also had the idea of displaying work on iron stands. The idea came to me from the most unlikely of sources. Watching the Netflix serial Bolivar the starring props, as far as I am concerned, have been the candlesticks or candelabra. Ironwork in all manner of designs; functional, decorative and votive objects that permeate almost every interior scene. The works I am doing are in a way votive objects that enter the sacred sphere.  This solution offers relatively easy fabrication and logistics as well as the capability to order and reorder elements in the show according to spatial disposition and light. The structures would also be relatively unobtrusive and be in keeping with the material, form and content of the sculptures.

The video Mythopoeia V – Hope is the first time I truly bring together my physical work with video techniques. I worked intuitively with a number of clips to compose the short film. I allowed the experience gained in the previous films in the series to merge with the work I am doing. Working from the gut rather than the head, I gave myself only a day, a morning truth be told, to edit the clips and add the soundtrack. It is only with hindsight that I see what I was doing.

The principle idea when editing and composing the video was to dislocate time by overlaying two different viewpoints asynchronous. I did this to add depth to the visuals and give a sense of the manifold aspects that underpin the making of the ceramic work. By showing the action from two points diametrically opposed, overlaying one another, the action is slowed and given greater weight and significance. It is a way of creating a double-take, a deja vue and at the same time giving the narrative a multiplicity: that this action does not only apply to this particular moment but is a universal speaking of other circumstances.

The action is divided into two parts. Again this was a spontaneous decision which fits the narrative, a before and after. These two moments linked by a tension of opposites were not planned but arose naturally out of the process of making and remaking. I don’t have to plan the details of this, only be aware of when it happens. Then, talking of awareness – after the fact – there are details such as the stone sculpture with her hands on her head. A fortuitous accident of placement, one of so many. When all is considered. life and art is all a coincidence of place and time, making something out of contingent events if one is only willful enough to see things through.