Small scale Perspex sculpture.

Sculpture about 4feet high and 4feet wide.

Milton Avery 'The Seamstress' A retrospective similarity I discovered only after making my piece.

This was the result of 3 weeks of experimentation with these materials. My design idea was to create a construction much as I had with the melted polythene that represented an eye or could abstractly suggest that shape. I think that in the battle to understand the materials themselves and to get the piece to self sufficiently work most of my creative energy disappeared. It ended up instead in the detail of working out how to get the elements to cooperate and balance and eventually stand unsupported rather than me finding the aesthetic essentials of my idea.

I liked the principle and I could see my visual influences in the work but in the end it was more about working through the practicalities of making this rather than any successful artistic outcome. I felt it stayed true to the core ideas of my project and presented that in an interesting way but it failed as a piece of art that could exist independently.

It doesn't photograph as well as it actually feels in front of the piece. In daylight outside there is a real depth to the colours as the Perspex (being similar to glass) reacts well to sunlight. The shape of each piece was formed prior to painting because when painted Perspex is heated certain colours (particularly red) blacken or take on a darker hue and spot around the places where the heat is applied. The result of this is that the sculpture has to be shaped and constructed as clear Perspex so one doesn't always get the correct sense of what colour might or might not add to the form.

I certainly think in terms of my project it is an interesting way of addressing the core themes. I have used the materials themselves to represent ideas of visual distortion that I had spoken about and for me that has a greater depth than initially I might of imagined when first embarking upon the project. I am still battling with the balance between creative freedom and exploration and final finished harmonious form. I admire some artists that seem to make a non aesthetic work but I find it uniquely difficult to be spontaneously investigative and at the same time produce an end outcome I am happy with.

I think perhaps I might have been better off working with Perspex as the shape I was given rather than breaking the material and trying to distort it. I think I could have perhaps found a sculptural form in conjunction with other objects to which ultimately the aesthetic outcome might have been better. I was anxious to use the distorted material as representative of the project brief as I felt this was an interesting perspective. I think I realise better how difficult it is to transfer what one might imagine creatively into a concrete outcome that works independently of the artists's imagination. These are of course very valuable lessons in one's development.

One of the bonuses of using this material is how light and portable it is. It is however fragile once heated and drilled and I think dismantling and reassembly although it might appear to be straightforward perhaps ultimately might not be. The paint is very easily marked and certain pieces take far more pressure than others so when moving the pieces into a visual position one likes there is always a process of tightening and loosening the bolts and the danger of leaving deep marks and chipped paint on the panels.

I would use the materials again but possibly as an addition to another form. I am thinking of wood more lately and I do like the visual connection between wood and Perspex. I have looked at the work of Sara Barker and her very minimalist thin forms primarily of aluminium or steel and for some reason I find the idea of wood and Perspex amongst those vertical thin sculptures to be very appealing. I think it positive to see the next idea after the one I think fails. I imagine as with everything that is ultimately how progress is made.

 

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