Friday, 16 August 2013

Chapter 1 : Research for Spirals - Man-Made and Natural

I've been spotting spirals for some time now (more getting ahead of myself), photographing and cutting them out of newspapers and magazines. Arranging them into a montage proved to be an interesting and challenging task.  What was I noticing?  What were the images saying to me?  What did I want to say through them?  So here below are a series of montages with some commentary about how they link.  I've added some drawings to each montage to help understand the rhythm and energy of the shapes.

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These images are linked by more than tone.  They also exude strength and power.  Spirals have over time represented women, fertility, life-cycles, childbirth and intuition. Here is the wonderful drawing by Leonardo da Vinci of a baby curled and enfolded  in utero, an African woman's head wrapped in her tribal print, a then engraved with spirals part of the Snettisham Hoard, whilst the broad and winding staircase slows travel within a shop and the exquisite miracle shells speak of craftsmenship.

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More spiral staircases airy and open like the Reichstag Dome in this grouping.

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What is more individual than a fingerprint?  On all these things there is the maker's mark, incised, engraved, written, printed, signs and symbols communicating beliefs and lore.

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Now for something more contentious: barbed and razor wire. It may protect, mark borders and ownership, but also imprison, its use associated with violence.  It's interesting to see the work of Escher and Andy Goldsworthy alongside such images.

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Now more in the natural world, ferns curling and unfurling, plants twist and twine.  Maybe they reach out and connect or more sinisterly they wrap, engulf and choke with their sinuous tendrils.

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Fibonnacci in abundance: Darwin's world.  Here is the story of evolution, of discovery, references to a primitive world and the power of nature.  All the versions curl and enclose.

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And then I was peeling apples for a casserole and there were glorious 3D spirals !

Monday, 5 August 2013

Module 3 and a New Approach

Keeping a promise to myself (and Sian) I have only downloaded half of this module.  This strategy is intended to prevent me from getting ahead of myself: a vain attempt to change the habits of a lifetime.  I spent far too long over Module 2. I carefully read through all the chapters  and as a result started to form a fixed idea of what I would do for the resolved sample. In the end the process became somewhat laboured. This time I'm going to see if I can just take pleasure in the exercises and tasks chapter by chapter and allow the skills they teach to reveal possibilities.