Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Scarlet Oak Leaf Fire Star

Scarlet Oak Leaf Fire Star, originally uploaded by escher....

I am coming towards the end of a long weekend. every day of which has had gloriously bright, autumn weather. Saturday I re-did my commission, Sunday we did the workshop. Yesterday we went to Manchester as my partner had a hospital appointment so we went to a gallery too and today I could finally get stuck into some land art for myself.

I started off with high ideas. I was going to make a disco-dancing-ultra-flashing-multi-coloured-mega-leaf-lantern-in-space but in the end I just couldn't be bothered. Like the Duracell bunny's inferiorly powered cousin I started to fade into slow motion. I was just enjoying taking it slooooowwww far too much.

I am sure when I have a new set of batteries put in I will wish that I'd made use of the still weather to go all mega-leaf-lantern on you all but there you go. When you want to kick back then why not?

I still had to make something though just something far less ambitious. I really liked the Holly Star I made back in April and it seemed quite apt to abut the two seasons that bookend summer with green for spring and now red for autumn. I also liked the Holly Star sculpture as I seem to get quite a few hits from people searching for the name. It certainly isn't anyone looking for my artwork however as there is what is commonly termed a 'news-hottie' called Holly Starr who works in Kansas City reporting on the local news. She is described as an actress/model/presenter and isn't afraid to pose in bikinis. I have tried that approach to further my own career but it seemed it back fired. Apparently you have to look nice in a bikini not just be prepared to wear one for anyone that asks. (Now they tell me).

The name Holly Starr struck me as one suitable for a porn actress (no disrespect intended) so in an attempt to drum up more hits I thought about naming this sculpture (children please look away now) "Big ***** and ***** love getting *** ****** **** from the guy next door whilst bent over ******* at the **** ******". or something. Do you think it would be a good idea to name my sculptures in such a way? It'd be sure to get me up the google rankings.

I am sure someone will see some deep artistic symbolism in the phrase
"Big Terry and Nigel love getting car fixing tips from the guy next door whilst bent over looking at the car's engine." So perhaps there is more to this idea that at first glance. A new direction for my art?

No but seriously. I'll go for 'Scarlet Oak Fire Star' it seems more appropriate and if you are starting out in the porn industry then feel free to use the moniker for your name.

One of the exhibits at the Whitworth Gallery in Manchester, that we visited yesterday, was about outsider art. I thought it was very interesting and I shared some of my thoughts on my blog. But what I forgot to mention there was another exhibit by Olafur Eliasson who I had not encountered before.

His installation consisted of miniature trees from floor to ceiling, made from cut branches stripped of their leaves. A path meandered through the sculpture which was set in a dark room. As you walked through the lights got dimmer until it was nearly dark and it brought forward thoughts of being a child, fairytales and being lost in a dark wood. The smell of the wood and the lighting was very evocative but it did make me wonder what the point was of trying to bring a natural outdoor experience inside and whether you could better achieve the feeling the artist was trying to evoke outside the gallery setting. It is something I've been pondering a lot recently on how it may be possible to bring authentic land art inside a gallery space, and indeed whether you should really try at all.

At one point I became part of the installation. As I meandered through, it was getting darker and darker and two ladies approached from the opposite direction. The path through the wood was not wide enough for us all so I propped myself up in a corner so that they could get past. Instead of walking past me though they stopped and one peered closely into my face.

"There's a statue here" she said.

"No, I'm just trying to let you get through" I replied.

She leapt in the air like a scalded cat and let out a piercing scream. It seemed the dark wood of fairy tales was having quite a strong affect on this lady.

I gathered these Scarlet Oak leaves, and many others, from a tree I had noticed by the side of the road. On the way we passed many others and I was amazed that I had not noticed them before. Last year when I made this ball I managed to find six trees to collect leaves from after searching and searching. And yet this year I keep tripping over them everywhere.

Just like when you buy a new car you suddenly notice that make and model everywhere and it seems it is so with everything else in life. How much passes us by because we simply take no notice? Even if we are convinced of the contrary.

I never fail to be amazed at what new and interesting things I constantly find and how I missed so much before despite how hard I was looking. Land art and mother nature are the gifts that keep on giving all that is required is to open your eyes and mind.

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