Thinking Large, Working Small

Mental Faculties, 2014. Plaster.

Mental Faculties, 2014. Plaster.

These are a series of photos of my most recent works.  While I have spent the last couple months working at a rather large scale for my fiber sculptures, I have decided to work a tad smaller and focus my thoughts on different types of making processes.  These photos are those of my works done in plaster, which were cast from molds that were taken from fabric dipped in wax.

In addition to exploring my material usage and scale, I’ve also begun delving into different branches of my concept.  While the woobie to which I refer is known as a comfort item, those in psychology refer to this item as the transitional object.  Through this process of making I have looked and treated the transitional object as a symbol of the human brain.  In the studies I have done thus far, the transitional object proves to be rather imperative to the mental development of children.  I wanted this project to serve as a physical example of the possible mental side effects due to a lack of that transitional object during times of anxiety.  The photo at the top shows “Mental Faculties”, 2014.  It is a set of four smaller scale sculptures that focus on the breakdown of the mind during anxiety attacks. I used a cast of the woobie to serve as the mind and also as the transitional object.  Plaster seemed to be the medium of choice as it is brittle and gave me the outcome for which I was hoping: a crumbling, fragile work.

Mental Faculties, 2014. Plaster.

Mental Faculties, 2014. Plaster.

Another work I have fabricated over the past couple days takes on a more abstract shape of the brain.  This work, “Mental Delapidation”, 2014, shows the brain and the effects of anxiety that can happen in the mental processes.  Anxiety leaves the victim feeling warn down, broken, and stained in a sort of way.  I wanted this sculpture to embody these feelings while still showing the transitional object in place of the brain for abstraction.

"Mental Delapidation", 2014. Plaster.

“Mental Delapidation”, 2014. Plaster.

Another view of the work:

"Mental Delapidation", 2014. Plaster.

“Mental Delapidation”, 2014. Plaster.

For more thoughts on this topic, I’ll be posting my senior thesis in the near future, so please keep an eye out.    Also, follow my process more closely on Instagram: artistinspired0217

Art Inspirations

Wool and Nail Sample, 2014.

Wool and Nail Sample, 2014.

During this week I’ve done a multitude of various jobs.  After finishing the collaboration work on Tuesday and being a studio assistant to Cincinnati based artist, Matthew Lynch (a member of the artist group, SIMPARCH), I was able to spend time in the studio working on the ideas that have been floating through my brain as of late.

The first idea I worked on involved the repetitive process of wrapping raw alpaca fibers around recycled nails.  At the moment, I’ve finished around 250, but there are many more to do before I feel the work is complete.  I have started nailing them into a table to provide a structure for them to manipulate.  Each of them are spaced one inch apart, but the spacing looks to be varied due to the fibers blending and thinning in certain areas.  This work should be finished by Tuesday, March 4th.

Another idea I’ve developed is the idea of dipping fibrous materials into foundry wax, and then proceeding to make a mold of them from other materials.  The first material I worked with to test was plaster; I feel this work was rather successful as it touches upon my interest in nature through its physical aesthetic.  I like the link between fibers and nature, as they are similar in the fact that both look delicate, but are some of the strongest materials to which we have access. I’d like to use other materials such as concrete in fabricating these molds, which will be shown on Tuesday, March 4th also.

Recent fiber mold made from plaster, 2014.

Recent fiber mold made from plaster, 2014.

Today will be spent solely in the studio working on these ideas.  I’ll be experimenting with materials, making new molds of fibers, and attending an artist lecture in the sculpture department.  There is much inspiration to be discovered after spending time working on another artist’s ideas.  It was an honor and a privilege to work for them and I look forward to it in the future, but I’m thrilled to spend today with my first loves: fiber and sculpture.

Commission Photos

Final Stools

Final Stools created on commission for Cincinnati artist, Katy Tompkins. 2014.

Blue Bow Stool

Blue Bow Stool, 2014. Commission for artist, Katy Tompkins.

Green and Black Knot Stool

Green and Black Knot Stool, 2014. Commission for Cincinnati artist, Katy Tompkins.

Hot Pink Clover

Hot Pink Clover Stool, 2014.Commission for Cincinnati artist, Katy Tompkins.

These are the final works commissioned for Cincinnati artist, Katy Tompkins.  More information to come on the date and place of the exhibition in which these works will be shown!   It was a joy to work with her on these sculptures, and I hope to be commissioned or asked to collaborate in the future!

Commission Opportunity

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Recently I was asked by fellow artist, Katy Tompkins, to aid in making work for her upcoming show in March. Having known Katy for two years now I have had many work opportunities with her up to this point, but none to this degree. I was thrilled to be offered and accept the opportunity to say the least!

In the photo above you see a sample of the work I have finished thus far. I’d like to save further images until the final works are complete. The job she assigned me was to turn her idea into a reality. She asked if I could locate the materials needed, and begin covering the legs and seats of these vintage bar stools with various materials, but focusing on nylon fishnet stockings. There are going to be three of these stools, and they will be featured in her upcoming show. Once final photos are posted I will share the date, time, and location of this opening.

Thank you for taking the time to follow my artistic processes and jobs. If interested in following more closely, look to my Instagram: artistinspired0217

Little Art, Big Processes

Untitled, 2014. Handmade Rope from recycled materials, Found Object

Untitled, 2014. Handmade Rope from recycled materials, Found Object

Studio time was rather rewarding.  A major question I have been determined to answer in my processes was finally solved: how to make handmade rope.  The past two weeks I have spent building my own materials to fabricate this simple, but strong material, and finally my inquiries were rewarded with this bright idea: why not find an object that already moves?

I was fortunate enough to have the idea to use a meat grinder as the mechanism for spinning the materials.   In my practice, I find it very important to recycle materials and give them a new life, so why not recycle a tool?  After screwing a small hook into the opposite wall, I hooked the materials into the meat grinder and began to spin the handle.  Soon enough, the materials were intertwined and constructed the material I have been working so hard to make.  In the image below, you can see a detail shot of the rope and its materials: recycled yarn, daisy chain, and plastic bag.

After the success of the rope, I decided it was important to finish a work.  This semester has been full of experimentation, so the production rate of finished work has slowed down slightly.  I have decided to start making tiny sculptures each day, or at the very least every other day, in order to keep my production rate at its best and to keep myself from feeling that I am in a rut due to the lack of making.  In the photo above is my latest tiny sculpture, “Untitled, 2014”.  Made from found object and the sample rope I finished, I found it to be rather successful.  It also brought me much happiness to have finished a piece for the first time this week.  The goal is to make more during this week, along with keeping up with the daily experimentation.

For more about my processes and photos of work, please follow my instagram: artistinspired0217

Handmade Rope from recycled materials such as plastic and yarn.

Handmade Rope from recycled materials such as plastic and yarn.

 

GLOW Art Rave Photos

Arm Knit Woobie Nightlight

Arm Knit Woobie Nightlight, shown at GLOW Art Rave 2014.

Special thanks to all of those who were able to make it to Mayday last night for the GLOW Art Rave!  The artists showing were quite thrilled with the turn out, and I’d say it was a success.  The Happy Couple Duo also did a phenomenal job as the DJs and kept the party going all night!  Many thanks to them for aiding in putting this art exhibition together.  Arm Knit Woobie Nightlight made a bright presence, and was loved by all.  I appreciate all your kind words last night in regard to my work.  Thank you!  Above is a section of this work, but below is the full installation:

Arm Knit Woobie Nightlight

Arm Knit Woobie Nightlight as shown at GLOW Art Rave 2014.

For those interested in seeing more works and following my artistic processes more closely, please feel free to follow me on Instagram: artistinspired0217