Updated artist statement

Looking back at the statement I had written for myself in the workshop, I had decided to expand on what I had already written to explain my intention and artistic direction in further detail.
For next term, I intend to make this statement appear more final and professional.

As I attempt to uncover and decipher my thoughts, I create work as both a coping mechanism, and a tool to understand myself better. Using a mixture of found archive footage, collage, painting and drawing, I piece together my thoughts, dreams and interests in a way which reflects my constantly changing mood and frame of mind. Themes I have been incorporating into my work are popular culture, manga and horror, which reflect my interests at the time. Previously, I have focused on painting and drawing, but I am beginning to explore film and digital art. Digital can be considered a form of presentation and publication of popular culture, therefore I take great inspiration from this in my work.

Expansion of previous drawing (in progress)

Taking heavy inspiration from the portrait of my housemate, along with my interest in dreams, I created a large collage and drawing, inspired by a recurring dream of hers she had as a child. In this dream, she would be stood in a field of flowers, and would pick just one daisy, which would trigger the whole world to explode. The subject is asleep in the drawing, representing her dreaming state. The flowers collaged behind her were printed in negative to signify the confusing and ‘off’ feeling of having a dream. The one daisy towards the bottom right was printed in colour to stand for the single daisy in her dream which would trigger the explosion. What interested me specifically about this dream was the potential of what it could mean for her unconscious, and her regular waking life. The idea of her picking just one flower, a relatively harmless act, could trigger the end of the world is frightening, and could represent her fear.

I intend to add more flowers at the bottom to create more dimension and better close off the edges of the piece. I am also very interested in expanding the piece by adding more flowers, with imagery representing the destruction and act of the explosion.48366644_2011740345586804_4639259970460712960_n

Olivia Plender

I started looking at the work of Olivia Plender after a dissertation tutorial with Jon, after discussing my interest in comics and sequential narrative.
Plender uses videos, performance, architectural installations and comics to explore social movements. What struck me in particular was her use of comics and drawing, to piece together narratives. In an interview with The Guardian, she describes drawing as a ‘necessary part of the process’ for her, despite her work usually ending up in performances and installations. Her comparison of comics to film, and ‘cinematic visual language’ is an idea I had been researching for my dissertation, and one of my key points, as I delve into the visual language of comics. She says,

“One of my first influences was the work of Öyvind Fahlström, a Swedish artist who died in the early 1970s. He used comic book imagery, because he wanted to make artwork that everyone could understand. I am interested in this idea – most people do understand the imagery and the basic repertoire of signs and symbols used in comic books.”

I agree with this definition, although I cannot yet relate it to my work, it’s a way of thinking I have been exploring, and would therefore like to remember this for my future artwork.

The combination and variety drawing styles is something I would like to note as a reminder to myself: everything does not have to look as “perfect” as I’d like.

Artes Mundi 8:

Stepping into the room in Cardiff museum, we were greeted with walls of colour and large artworks which filled the eye with ideas of what seemed to be a playground of artwork. This was Anna Boghiguian’s piece, A meteor fell from the sky.

This is a mixed media piece compiled of drawings, paintings, steel cutouts to explore the history behind steel harvesting, and its affect on communities up to the present day, to its production and connection to Port Talbot.

The collation of several images in different formats strengthens the notion of exploration in this large piece, with plenty of visual stimuli to keep the narrative engaging. The use of such vastly mixed media creates an atmosphere with a clear progression of a journey into the timeline of the steel industry. From this piece, I was inspired to expand the ways in which I use my work to record ideas. I should never limit myself to one medium, as another could hold more relevant weight to me.

This piece as a collation of small artworks is a style I have been interested in working in myself, and it was extremely helpful for me to see so much artwork presented this way. The differences in pieces show the broad thoughts and ideas which go into the compilation of the piece, which in turn gives me the same impressions as a large piece of writing including a vast array of source material.

Artist statement workshop

We had a workshop presented by Sean and Paul which focused on writing an artist statement. After being presented with real working artist statements, we were able to see different ways we could form our own statement.
We began by taking notes of a partners’ practice. For Melissa, I had written:

Elements of humour,
 ridiculousness of everyday life, everyday objects, ‘junk’
Intention: confused and intrigued
absurdity, confrontation, challenging
objects that are everywhere, discareded stones and rubble, Greece, importance of found objects, too important to be forgotten, sentimentality, cheap materials (we love a what shop queen)
why do I use these materials? Relationship with cheap things, what’s ‘important’, highly skilled, what defines value
Mainly sculpture and installation,

Considering what I had seen from previous students’ statements, I had decided to keep this fairly short, summing up the purpose behind her work.

My statement for Melissa:

The mundanity and repetitive structure of everyday life often stops us from truly seeing the artistic power of a simple, common object. Through sculpture, my work explores the ways in which we view the things around us every day, using found objects, and currently, more skilled practices, such as stone carving. A recent trip to Greece has piqued my interest in artefacts, being surrounded by evidence and ruins of a rich history. In my work, I aim to push the limits of what we deem ‘materials’, and to confuse and intrigue the audience with what they see at surface level every day.

Melissa’s statement for myself:

In an attempt to try to understand her unconscious mind, she draws on sub-cultures around her, archieved footage and everyday life, trying to piece together the ways in which they effect her. The material form of her work is constantly changing as it reflects the ups and downs of her mind. As she comes to terms with her emotions, she uses her creations as a coping mechanism. Her work ranges from painting, drawing, print and film

There were a few differences in this to how I would have written it, however that gave me an outside perspective of how I explained my work and how it was received. This in turn made me think more cautiously and independently about myself.

My own statement:

As I attempt to uncover and decipher my thoughts, I create work as both a coping mechanism, and a tool to understand myself better. Using a mixture of found archive footage, collage, painting and drawing, I piece together my thoughts, dreams and interests in a way which reflects my constantly changing mood and frame of mind.

I believe I could expand on this and explain in greater detail, the premise of my work.


Dada & Hannah Hoch

Dada surfaced as a reaction to World War I, as an anti capitalistic approach from artists rejecting modern society and the materialistic values of the bourgeoisie. While this is not a theme I explore directly in my work, this was suggested by David in a tutorial and I feel could have a significant impact on the way I continue to produce work.

Hannah Hoch’s work focused on appropriating images into collage and photomontage as a way of rejecting social confines of women, and critique on popular culture. Her use of photomontage created fragmented pictures from juxtaposing, mass-produced imagery. This use of imagery and photomontage is something I would like to begin incorporating into my own work, so I can explore the recurring themes of dreams and surrealism. Her work, along with other Dada artists, rejected traditional art and German expressionism, which is an idea which I personally will not be the intention of my own work, as I do not want to create barriers by ruling out expressionism as an inspiration.

Themes I would like to explore using photomontage:

  • Dreams- creating a narrative reflecting key dreams which have impacted me
  • Images/photographs/drawings which represent my emotions and mood throughout the week