Monday, 28 February 2011

But anaglipter is such a troublemaker (snapped needle)

 My stupid, overactive mind is too full of ideas at the moment. Have been playing. Exploring. In an effort to make sense of them. Grrrrrrr. Have been using my sewing machine to stitch together maps, train tickets, bits and bobs from the London visit. Somewhere along the line other, erm stuffs started to join in too. My sewing machine was (and always has been) perfectly happy chugging along through paper, card ect... but it seriously objected to anaglipter wallpaper. In fact it went on strike. Made me a bit frustrated actually... it knows I ask a lot of it. But has never wimped out on a request before. Anyway we had words. And that seemed to do the trick. Have been trying some ideas to layer behind the fused glass. To really start to play with texture. Still need to work on the glass. It's cut ready.. just waiting for me now...

Saturday, 26 February 2011

Scarf Installation Somerset House (NEWGEN)

For me London Fashion Week (LWF) is about creativity. There are a lot of people there who are simply there to be seen, to be photographed (and there's nothing wrong with that). It just doesn't float my boat. I 'm so happy as a blender-in-erer. I just want to learn, be inspired, meet creative designery type folks, talk to them about their works,  and  (hopefully. Fingers-crossed hopefully) find and tune into their excitement about the journey, their process. I'm not interested in writing only about a final product. But to just to gain and share an insight into who they actually are, how their ideas have developed, grown, changed. Really, I want to know the whole person, or at least enough for my curiosity to fill in gaps. There are questions. Lots. Sometimes it's ok for those questions to remain unanswered, as long as they are acknowledged as questions (even if it's just acknowledgement by me). I was priviledged to meet several practitioners  who make beautiful things, who were refreshingly excited about their work passionate about their work. Wanted to talk. Not just pass me on to their PR. These are the designers I want to write about in time (on here and on Rosiepop). But it won't just be for their latest products only... it will be to share their enthusiasm, their aesthetic, their vision... people who have not yet lost their way, because they are only just discovering it...


This beautiful installation in one of the stairwells at Somerset house spanned four floors. It was made up of individual scarves (I stupidly didn't count them. But lots) designed by the NEWGEN designers * (for me some of the most exciting designers). It was the light filtering through the fabric which got me. That and the softness, the fluidity in comparision to the hard structural staircase. I loved it. And probably lingered there too long. ( loitering... as ever)

Inflatable installations by designer Christopher Raeburn, who works with parachute fabric. Just added to the air of creativity. Of newness and possibility. Twas great...

An explanation about NEWGEN...*In 1993 the British Fashion Council created New Generation (NEWGEN), the world’s first scheme to support emerging designer talent. NEWGEN continues to showcase and promote new designer businesses today. NEWGEN is sponsored by Topshop and have been supporters since 2001. Catwalk designers receive £5000 - £10,000 towards their show costs, sponsored Exhibition space, usage of the BFC Catwalk Show Space and mentoring.
Since NEWGEN's inception, its roll call includes Alexander McQueen, Boudicca, Matthew Williamson, Julien Macdonald, Lara Bohinc and Ann-Louise Roswald.
Internationally recognised as a prestigious launch pad, this scheme is a showcase of the best up-and-coming British fashion talent. It also acts as an important introduction for young UK-based designers to influential press and buyers from around the world.
The scheme has become a key draw for the international fashion media and buyers attending London Fashion Week. NEWGEN designers are among the must-see collections on schedule every season. 

Thursday, 24 February 2011

Hernia and the Ironwork Galleries (V & A part 1)

I don't know quite how it happened. I certainly didn't intend it to happen. I remember stumbling through the V & A desperately searching for a bench. Finding one. Flopping down. And briefly closing my eyes. At that point rising from said bench did not seem an imminent possibility. Or if I'm honest. Not even a distant possibility. It's all rather a haze really. Despite the hernia-inducing exhaustion (yes at that point I really did believe I had brought on a hernia. Ask my mum. It's true. I even texted her to share my panic. In my defence, she does constantly ask to be more involved in the minutae of my life) I was happy, having a really good time. Completely and utterly on my own. In London. Exhausted and in pain. But utterly content. My bench was in the Ironwork galleries (I'm not a geek. No really) and through my half closed eyes I was able to vary my squint and bring the intricate black structures in and out of focus against the stark white walls. I actually felt quite delirious at this point and had one of those rare, electifying jolts of inspiration that shoot through the body and stop. Still. Somewhere near the heart. The wrought iron structures were so completely and utterly beautiful (I will prove it. With pictures). Usually dismissed as just gates, or barriers of various types. They took on new identities against the walls. Artworks in their own rights. Pure craftmanship. Made parallels and links to my use of defining structure in my glasswork. I realised I had been drawing and taking photographs for an hour and a half.


Tuesday, 22 February 2011

London Fashion Week Overload..

My head is too full of stuff. It hurts. Gone beyond the spinning stage. So much visual stimuli. Don't know quite how to organise or make sense of it all. Yet. In time I'll be able to write about, document the work with which I could identify. The work in which I could somehow glimpse the journey. The craft. The integrity. The creativity. That spark of somethingness...

Some random images which won't ever really belong in any category. But, in a way, which sort of sum up the experience. For now. Anyway...

Lots and lots of films to develop. To really see the true extent of what (or what not) has been captured... and what sort of state it is in (ooer..!)

Dear Yorkshire Sculpture Park...

Dearest Yorkshire Sculpture Park

 I've been away for a while. London. I have strayed. Maybe we just know each other too well now... Maybe we need a break... have been spending some time at the Saatchi Gallery. I know I did send a mass text message saying 'In the Saatchi. Have died and gone to heaven! It's the best place I have ever, ever been!! xx.' Yes that is two exclamation marks. And yes it did go to rather a lot of people. But I do still love you too. It's not you, it's me. I think I needed a change. You are very different. I was overexcited by the artwork. Can I have you both? Please?

Begging forgiveness
Kathryn xx

Dan Perfect 'Village' 2007

Dan Perfect 'Antelope Canyon' 2005
 Was very taken with Dan Perfect's paintings. Don't think I was aware of these beforehand. Maybe I've seen them in magazines and not remembered. Seeing them in actuality was quite special really. Think I might have actually gasped. And done that funny jig thing that inflicts me from time to time. Big, big canvases. Alive with paint. With energy. Thought* how is it possible to capture such sheer energy through paint? I want to know more. And I really, really would like one all for myself...

Toby Ziegler 'The Liberals (3rd Version)'.

 A rubbing of a door. In graphite. Beautiful velvety texture. Fragile, fragile paper. Texture of door imprinted. Wish I knew who the artist was...would like to find out more about them...
Richard Wilson '20:50.' 1987. Used sump oil, steel. Dimensions variable
 Richard Wilson. Have seen this before. When the Saatchi Gallery was housed in the Town Hall. I love it. It puts me on edge. The sense of danger. The perfect mirrored surface. The smell hits long before the installation is visible. It plays with my senses, my perception.

Saturday, 12 February 2011

Strata in Red

 It really didn't occur to me for a long time to develop the Strata series into red. I'd been working only in blues and greens due to the Holderness roots of the initial pieces. I must admit to being really, really sceptical (and worried) when it was commisioned  in red. I secretly told myself that I would try it, but not release the work if it didn't feel right (I do that a lot. An awful lot more than people realise...)

In the end I was quite pleased (ish) with the red. I think. And did make a few more pieces. I quite like the mix of textures and translucency with opacity. Especially when the colours bleed out of their little section... As ever I like it imperfect. It can be quite tricky to achieve the perfect imperfections. It's all about how long and how high to fire the glass for in the kiln. Too high and all definition is lost. I really hate that. Too long and it flattens... too short and it doesn't meld to the degree I like. I used to love experimenting with firing cycles, but now I'm at the stage where I know my kiln and it's quirks inside out... I can pretty much predict and control how something will work out...  not including controversial colour schemes. Of course...

Sunday, 6 February 2011

Some thoughts on Nora Fok at the Harley Gallery

Am good at getting to the Harley Gallery now (must better than the first time?).  It's my nearest place for contemporary art. Physically it's the opposite to the Yorkshire Sculpture Park (where I go to think and make sense and be alone). The Harley Gallery is just as comforting but in an more embracing way (it's indoors, for a start), there is nowhere to hide away. But always someone to talk to.

Today I went with a proper purpose (rather than as escapism). To see the work of Nora Fok (visit her website here). Beautiful sculptural shapes. Wearable. Woven from nylon threads. Complex geometric designs based around the structure of natural forms. It was actually stunning and the more I think about it, the less I can get my head around the sheer amount of work involved in each piece. I really, really can't. It's actually hurting my head a bit.

'Nora Fok’s jewellery is crafted from very fine nylon microfilament, which she knits, knots, plaits and weaves by hand to make jewellery that is inspired by complex mathematics, geometry and the patterns in nature.'

I was captivated by the shadows cast through the incricate weaves...spidery and vunerable... impossible to photograph. The colour... so delicate sometimes that it almost wasn't there. But the most interesting thing. The best thing. Was the models, the macquettes, being allowed to glimpse the process. The trial and error... for me it makes the body of work complete. Tells the story. Adds the integrity.

Nora Fok was present. It was the launch of her exhibition. I'm rubbish at talking to people. Can never remember what I wanted to ask. In the end I just smiled like an idiot and said it was beautiful work (because it completely and utterly was)

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