‘The Gallerist’ at the Sunday Painter. Rob Chevasse’s video is a collection of teenage home videos outlining the life-long friendship between himself and Sunday Painter’s Will Jarvis. It was a creatively edited collection of sound bytes and footage of their youth put together in a way only the artist could. Although I wasn’t blown away by the film I was impressed by the lengths the artist had gone to to produce something truly unique.
I previously believed that what made my work unique was the visual language I was building through my combination of references – however now I’m not so sure. I need to stop relying on the connotations of existing imagery in order to take ownership of my work. I need to engage in longer projects that I can build on over time to enforce an individual stamp on them. The best way to do this I believe is within moving image, the things I film and the way in which I film or edit them offer way more possibilities to my creativity.
“Echoes of the Ornamental Garden.” is the current group show at the Seventeen Gallery. There was an impressive film by Richard Paul Called ‘All That Is Solid.’ It had a really satisfying voiceover calmy detailing the mythical properties of the building materials to an imaginary city all to a series of impressive 3D images.
This reminded me of a recent conversation about technology with artist Lewis Teague Wright and its place in culture particularly in art. My realisation is that my work has to make comment on the world around me and the world around me is one of ever advancing technology. Therefore I need to utilise the technologies at hand to make truly progressive work.
I realised assigning a socio-political edge to my work is proving unsuccessful so have begun to add fiction to contextualise it. Each piece tells a story relating to a fantasy world that will grow with every artwork. I will display the work as museum exhibits of the future recording events that haven’t happened yet. This enables me to make comment on what has already happened by imagining how it may affect what is yet to happen.
I want to explore the idea of the museum of the future. Art historically has been the most successful way of recording the past however we are in a time where that is no longer the case. How will digital or high tech art survive it’s creators in the future? In the past people would take measures to ensure works were structurally strong enough to survive – is art now more about your intellectual survival?
La Jetee. The film consists of a sequence of stylishly shot stills, illustrating the story of a post World War 3 time traveller. A truly timeless piece of work – plus the fluidity of time within the plot makes its success even more astute. It got me to thinking about how making films in order to tell a story – the motion of the film can be secondary to the narrative.
The Return – An incredible soviet animation from 1980 by Vladimir Tarassov. The way ‘The Return’ uses animation is simple but intelligent. More often than not the imagery itself isn’t moving however the view of the image is always changing.
Bullet Ballet – The styling of the enemy gang in this film is cleverly stereotypical. By giving them slick hair and sideburns and leather biker jacket they are placed within trends that although historic never actually went away. By styling them in a way that clashes with the futuristic Tokyo backdrop the director outlines the perpetual resurgence within fashion. This chosen ‘vintage’ look reemerges so often it is perfectly plausible it will continue to do so. By not committing to a prediction of what is to come but by looking on what will repeat he has avoided ageing the film.
As well as fashions I am interested in the resurgence of subcultures as a whole. Particularly the way the ideal version of something can be romanticised, exaggerated, updated or ruined. Sometimes to a point of no recognition to its original context like skinhead culture for example.
In deciding what cultures I’d like to revive I thought of Samurai. The Samurai were the military nobility of medieval and early-modern Japan. Whilst thinking about resurgence there are no rules to say how far this could go back. As things in recent history become reappropriated over and over you’ll have to go further back to find new things to resurge. There are plenty of people wearing clothes influenced by western Victorian ideas and military fashion has always been a staple so plausibly Samurai could be next.
Martine Rose is a fashion designer from North London. I have always admired her exaggeration of pre-existing subcultures and trends in order to make new ideas. Her referencing of football kits, club culture and modern musical traditions are prevalent across the designs she chooses to create impending trends.
Brain Dead is a Los Angeles-based creative collective of artists and designers, as well as a streetwear brand that takes inspiration from post-punk, skateboarding and underground comics. Braindead perfectly tread the line between commerciality and creativity. They often collaborate with larger brands on wider reaching projects without compromising on integrity. I have been selected to create some work for an upcoming book of theirs.
Dukes distribution is a new publisher and record label lead in part by Alex Gross, graphic designer and art director from Our Place studios. They have invited me to produce a book that they will fund and publish of my work. This is a great opportunity to document the work I have been doing on the MA whilst collaborating with an extremely competent graphic designer. I will include video stills, photographs of sculptures and paintings all illustrating original text of my design.
Currently working on numerous projects – the Samurai as previously mentioned, an animation plus getting ideas together for story writing and ways of documenting and editing the collection so far. Keen to find ways of creating 3D digital illustrations looking into 3D printing. Generating ideas for how to display the pieces. Experimented with green screen unsuccessfully, learnt how moving image is different and needs real planning. Story boarding!