Things to consider first…..
- consolidate what you’ve learned and plan a portrait.
- show how your skills in handling paint and interpreting your subject are developing.
- explore arrangements- look at other artist, visit exhibitions, books or online to consider the –
- Background, light, Interior, brushwork and use of colour.
- make notes about works that you find particularly arresting.
- make studies to work out your composition.
- think about the painting medium, oil or acrylic?
This assignment was inspired by the work of Samara Scott.
The recent Spring exhibition at the Margate turner contemporary is ‘entangled’ and Scott designed an art work or installed her work on the wall of the service lift. She is interested in site-specific work that can ‘nestle’ in with the surroundings. She explores the fusing of natural and artificial the plasticity and the organic, its a message about contemporary consumers. She uses rich colours an amalgamation of materials that wont last and tend to decompose and develop such as Yogurt. The work is called OLD LAKE and is made up of carpet, yogurt, plaster,food colouring. (no paint)
I particularly admired this work and everyone wanted to touch it, take photos so very popular. She has turned a mechanical object- the lift, and reintroduced it to our world as a cosy, tactile space that is organic and therefore restores a human connection with this area. She has not used any paint on the carpet but I was inspired to try this and experiment with mixing paint into fibres of a left over bit of carpet I had at home. This was risky as I have not worked with this medium before other than when I dropped paint onto the carpet at a rented house. I just painted it over as it was very patterned and no one ever noticed other than the carpet had become hard. I also admire the message she is conveying with her work and I think this proves my depth of understanding of the arts is more than just admiring the image but what the image means and represents to the viewer and the artist. Her depiction of a society of consumers where we either pile cream on our faces and stuff food into our mouths is about the blurred line of what society needs and what its needs are.
My assignment was about developing the ideas from the project- ‘People in context’. I was thinking about people ‘out of context’ such as a portrait on carpet, it ‘flips’ the picture from the traditional space of the wall and re-establish itself on the floor with a different purpose. Very similar to the work I saw at the recent Rauschenberg study visit,where he painted on the sheets of a bed and then presented it as a formal portrait on a wall. The carpet which is a material that is normally found on the floor is re located to the wall. The experiment was to see how the idea developed from using the carpet as a canvas and either using this canvass to refer to its original purpose or to use it as texture background for a painting. Do I bring attention to the material and make it part of the art work or just experiment with the fibres of the carpet? At first I though I would try to recapture the coffee stain that I used in my workbook studies when experimenting with other backgrounds, then I added in wine spillages and footprints. I found this was going in the wrong direction . I tested different ways of painting (aggressive brush work, rubbing into the fibres, laying paint thickly on top of fibres, using a pallet knife) and found that if I used lots of white sprit, I could remove paint in a similar way to a putty rubber with charcoal. I decided to follow on with paint direction and not use other mediums, unlike Scott; I decided this as I intend to send work for assessment in September and I don’t feel confident to send the assessors work with decaying yogurt growing on carpet. I feel this material could have a variety of uses with the next part of the course-Part 4; Landscapes.
The reason I chose this composition is because I feel its the strongest one out of all the work I carried out in part 3. The’ looking up’ direction of the head and the contours of the nose, mouth and the whiteness of the eyes are something that I find interesting with this arrangement. The light on the neck and the wall behind adds drama and tone. The gesturing of the look suggests that the image is not just about a portrait as the face directs their look elsewhere- to the carpet above. The subject is looking up to explain there is something more interesting than my face in this image; the medium that the face is painted on. The painted face on woollen fibres is a message similar to Scott’s. The natural woollen fibres manipulated into carpet alongside manufactured paints. The materials (wool and paint) are both natural but as a consumer society we have developed its purpose into a need (Carpet and easy to use paint). The Binary meaning is that one is soft and the other hardens (the organic and synthetic). I will be bold and relate this statement to the natural occurring emotional function of children becoming adults. I relate this to the human condition as the image is a portrait, a portrait of human existence. An illusion of a portrait in the context of a mat for the floor. The meaning taken from this assignment is an interesting one to develop and the materials used are something I will experiment with again and I am encouraged by the progress of interpreting my subject in part 3.
Assignment 3. self portrait. oil paint on carpet. 2017