Gallery Visits

As our final project is an exhibition based project we felt it would be important to go and gather inspiration from work that has already been exhibited.

So Catherine and I organised a trip for the weekend to Manchester and Liverpool, we visited the Manchester Art Gallery, The Urbis Centre, The Liverpool Tate and The Walker Art Gallery. These galleries all had different exhibits taking place and were particularly interesting.

One of my favourite exhibits was the Sculpture Exhibit at The Liverpool Tate, i found that for me, i was thinking too inside the box and that sculpture although it isnt a photograph could actually be very inspiring for what it is that I want to do.

One piece that was very helpful to me in the Sculpture exhibit was a interactive piece made of mirrors, a material that I am hoping to use within my final project, it was engaging to the audience and allowed a number of perspectives on the piece due to the reflective material.

Photographs to follow.


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Module Reflection

For this module I have completed 3 articles based upon the subjects Power, Memory and Spectacle. During this module we were given three obstructions for the piece based upon Lars Von Trier’s film The Five Obstuctions. These obstructions have allowed me to explore different areas of work that I would not normally explore.

I have experimented during this module with a number of things, especially my memory artefact which was made for the obstruction which required us to create something we hadn’t created before. I created a flash movie, having never used adobe flash before this was quite a challenge and the end result was not the most compentely created piece I have ever made however, I feel that as I only had two weeks to create the artefact and the problems that I did encounter including not being able to host it on the internet due to problems uploading flash movies. This also helped with my problem solving, as I spent a large amount of time trying to fix things that had gone wrong.

I think that throughout this project a number of things worked and a number of things didn’t. The first artefact I created i’m not particularly impressed with the spectacle piece. I feel that I should have been more ambitious and more creative. That with the skills I have (much of which i’ve realised since my skills audit) I could have created a much more interesting piece had I spent more time thinking out it.

My favourite artefact is my Power artefact, as I was most interested in the project, it allowed me to bring in outside influences and meant that my work depended highly upon the creation of others. It also meant that there was an authenticity to my work which I am very interested in.

I am personally pleased with my own development throughout the duration of this module and I think that is reflected within my blog. Initially the research for Spectacle I think lacked the spark that the other subjects did and I think I have become more enthusiastic since the start of the module.

I think i’ve learnt a lot about the way I work during this research and development, I have always known that I enjoy working on something more if I am interested in it, but I think it’s really interesting how you can find something you enjoy within every project. For example I enjoy learning new skills so the memory piece was ideal for me.

I am going to continue to experiment for the 311mc module and I think that part of that experimentation will develop from the memory piece and the idea of interactivity which is something I really like and was used for both Memory and Power this term. I am also going to look at new ways of printing photographs for example using not only paper, but other methods such as glass printing or vinyl printing.

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Future Project

For this module we are supposed to find something to lead onto for the 311mc module. Throughout this module I have found some interesting leads such as my power and memory research has led into directions I have become interested in. So my ideas are mainly based around these areas.

For our final project, Catherine Povey  and I have been discussing ideas with Mez and Johnathan Lee about a photography installation project, based upon our research during 310mc.

Predominantly we want to create an exhibit of somebodies mind. This idea developed from an interest in the exhibit at The Haywood Gallery called “Walking In My Mind” which allowed artists to create their mind within a given space.

One artist used red shapes with polka dots to represent that they were lost within a group, seemingly unsignificant. Another artist created what could be seen more literally as a mind, with duct tape and things to look more like you would imagine the inside of a mind to look like.

For this project we are going to draw upon ideas we developed in 310mc and incorporate them into creating a mind. For example, we want to create a secrets compartment in somebodies mind based upon my post secret project, using both photography and art work to create the idea of a secret that somebody hides away, but along with the installation part of the project we are going to find a way of locking the secrets  out so the audience must try to get into them.

We are also going to have

  • A memory section which is based upon both mine and Cat’s research and development of memory.
  • A fears and fantasies section influences by Pan’s Labryinth.
  • A logic section, which allows the audience to be interactive, with out photography being turned into puzzles.
  • A contemplative section, a place where we go in our mind to relax.
  • A motivational section, the part of the mind that gets us out of bed in the morning and keeps us going.

We are currently looking into psychology to find different types of the mind and the ways in which we can represent them through photography.

We are hoping to incorporate a number of  different types of media, although this would predominantly be a photography project, we think it’s important to bring in elements of video and sound and these areas will be vital for our project. After our skills audit with Johnathan Lee, we have found that we already possess a number of skills to help us within this project and that there are new skills which we can learn to progress us futher which we are looking into currently.

We also want to try a range of different ways of printing our images and projecting them. For example using projection onto boards, printing on perspex, mouting on wood. Printing on jigsaw puzzles etc. We find that the mind is a complex place and we want to incorporate a number of different types of work into this.

As we know we are supposed to come up with a number of ideas for our 311mc work, we feel that we can incorporate more than one into this project allowing both myself and Cat to take part in the project and take on our own sections to create.

Based upon how well Cat and I work together and the research we have done so far I think we are going to create an interesting piece of work. Both Cat and myself are very excited about this project and I feel this excitement will continue through to the end.

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Research Sources and Influences

As Nick talked about different types of sources and influences in our lecture I thought maybe it would be interesting to see where my influences lie.

As we could see before with the Coen brothers the film ‘No Country For Old Men’ has a number of external refences for example the name is taken from the W B Yeats poem called Sailing to Byzantium.

Now for my own sources, throughout this module and for other projects I have worked on I have tried to use sources that aren’t so well known and tend not to be very mainstream. I am a follower of a number of art blogs and personally like to visit art galleries and keep up to date with innovative works that are being created.

I found Johnathan Lee’s lecture particularly interesting where we were shown a number of experimental works, some of which I didn’t find that engaging for my own taste however  I found it particularly useful to see other types of work that are being created.

I found the website useful and have found a number of pieces on there which I feel could influence future works of mine.


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Memory Reflection

Now that I have created my artefact looking back I think it’s not the best artefact I have ever created and I would normally like to create something of a higher standard however I personally feel that it has an interesting idea behind it something which I would like to possibly explore in the future. As I am interested quite a lot in Japanese culture the idea behind the resonance of people left after the bombing of hiroshima which could be juxtaposed with stories of memories of the actual events itself.

However in terms of the artefact I created myself. I have used created a number of other edits since the first artefact I showed in the seminar as I havent been very happy with it, sure that I could do better there are now a number of edits.

I do however feel that the artefact should be judged more on the idea than the actual flash movie itself as I am confident that if I had possessed better flash skills this could have been communicated in a better way.

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Power Reflection

My power artefact is my favourite artefact that I have created during this module. It allowed me to incorporate something that I am really interested in into this module. Personally I have been following the post secret blog for around two years and every Sunday I am hit by the raw emotion which is piled onto a small post card. There is something very liberating and powerful about the project and I was glad that I could incorporate this into my work.

I also enjoyed using my own research and my own sources. Firstly I wasn’t sure if people would actually create their secret on a postcard for me or if I would actually receive enough to be able to create a video montage for this project. I was wowed again at the will to express yourself in a way you wouldn’t normally do.

Personally I think that this artefact will be the one that I carry through to next term and my final project. I think it’s important to be excited about what you do and what you are creating. This excites me and motivates me to keep researching and do more. This is the time of enthusiasm I feel I should have for my final project and will therefore look into works around this subject.

This piece would ideally be an exhibit and have the secrets posted on a wall or in a book for example, but due to the obstruction that we were set, i decided to create a video montage of the images so that I adapted to the obstruction. The audio I chose was just to finish the piece off and not to distract from the images on screen.

For future development it would be interesting to explore the idea of anonymity more in a type of documentary sense. I would ideally like to explore the idea “what’s in a name?” and are really trapped within our own identity.

The power artefact was reletively easy to create and allowed me to place more emphasis on the research and development of the piece instead of spending more time creating the artefact.

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Spectacle Reflection

For my spectacle idea i decided to look at what could be a spectacle for a small amount of people may not be a spectacle within a much larger group.

I decided that  I wanted to look at the idea of a spectacle for a couple – getting married the idea that the spectacle is planned by the two people invovled and the surrounding family.

So i wanted to somehow incorporate the excitement and show how the planning itself can actually be a spectacle. I took photographs which were to be used as the wedding invites for the couple and I created a video montage showing the images.

However when I showed this to the seminar group it seems that the idea I had tried to produce hadn’t actually come out that way in the final piece and my meaning was lost slightly.

The loss of meaning in my piece meant that when I created the artefacts for Memory and Power I took a lot more care and put a lot more time into the preproduction of the artefact so that I knew exactly what I was trying to say and exactly how I was going to say it.

Critically speaking the piece itself was too short and although I wanted something that was short and to the point, I feel it may have been too short and once it had got started it was over so there was no chance for the audiece to really get into it and feel the idea of a personal spectacle which was something I was trying  to portray. This is definately something I have worked on in the other artefacts I have created.

The photographs I took a lot of time on for example I lit the images and used a white backdrop to create a studio feel, however as this was the piece that used the obstruction that the images could only be on screen for a short amount of time, the quality of the images was somewhat lost and in reflection maybe I should have spent time aquiring more images so that my piece could have been longer.

I also think that I could have more work into the pre-production of this, however I feel that as this was the first artefact I created I have improved during the module.

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