Dough as flesh

Image

Dough as flesh

I’ve had illness after illness, crisis after crisis, including writing my dissertation which has taught me how easily you can become a hermit when there’s so many words to write. 🙂 These images are some more experiments, baking and experimenting how dough could be flesh. I’ve also been doing some writing apart from my dissertation which I’ve put a little glimpse of below. Let me know what you think, I love hearing others thoughts. 🙂

pink hand

Just one thing stands between us.
Part mother, part child, part other.
Like the spare pastry left once the gingerbread child has been cut out. All that holds us together seems to be the apron strings tied above my waist.

Jasmine Gauthier

squirm pinker across colour pink burned skin pink

The Kitchen as a Womb Experiments

Here we have a selection of some of my experiments so far this term from looking at the kitchen and especially baking as a way of conceptualising the creation of a child. Let me know what you think, I’d love some feedback. 🙂

jur•nl Promo Video

Video

Here’s our promo video of a project five artists, including me, have started embarking on… Let me know what you think.

www.jur-nl.com

We are shifting our project slightly pace-wise at the moment, but I’d love to know what you think of the site also or the project in general.

Past established artists contributing have been Elina Brotherus, Zed Nelson, Miranda Gavin, Emma Critchley, David Ellingsen and Laura Pannack.

Bed of Leaves

Walking away from our past,
Let us follow our darkest fear,
Swept off my feet by the wind,
Blowing between your branches,
Silky jaws lap and tear me apart.
Embrace me, branches.
I return once more.
Light has failed.
Children play in echoes;
Vegetation.
Asphyxiated on your perfume.
On every leaf your scent is caught.
Burrowing under the past,
only resurfacing to catch my breath.

Exaggerated whispers keep me
Running, I want to
grow, I want to
entwine with your wooded arms.
My eyes fail and that doesn’t
worry me a second.
Music plays, my ears burn.
Every few miles there is
a shelter built from wood.
Your flesh so starlight,
It’s worth every try.

I always thought that someone would make
you happier. I was wrong.

Fuse me with the trees:
you blew me away with gusts.

My fingers become bark,
seized completely; you seize the night.
Let me drown in night,
it’s the only way I can feel you.

Silky jaws of beasts,
slicing my mind to tatters.
I’ll follow you forever.
The trees glow when I cry,
Illuminated in the moonlight.
The leaves turn red and
the forest begins to take me.
Cooing me, lulling me
into your web.

I’m not the man I used to
be, but I’m not the
man I want to be yet.
Bury my body and never tell a soul,
I’m alone in the ice. Come find me,
Rain on me.

Your nails run down my legs,
Digging deeper with every stroke.
Bones push up the ground.
Fingers clasp my tendons.

I want to lie in your bed
of leaves, let me
be immersed in your
world, let me become
one with you, my love.

It’s been a while since I felt,
Water seep into my feet.
The rage of the wind in
the trees hits my
chest and darling I’m
short of breath. I’ve been
walking to find your heart.
I’ll follow you all my life.

Flesh and bone,
Curling petals,
Witnessing your Spring
Suffering the chill air.
Let me open the door again.
Heavy footing on soft soil.
Your darling face is my obituary.

Dripping leaves, Soaking floor,
Slithering down my mind.
Rabbits run, Badgers fall,
Sweet and wild, untamed
Your hair is caught
It whispers words,
Echoed memories, laughs from birds,
Willow, birch, beach and silver,
The friction burn inside my chest.
The ground calls for me
I lay down and sink.
I become the leaves of my bed.

 

I wrote this last term as part of an experimental web project which isn’t quite complete. I thought I should probably start posting my creative writing on here as well as it’s a big part of my experiments/practice now. My favourite part is the last stanza, everytime I read it I love it more and more. 🙂

Let me know what you think!

The Boy & The Twins – Åsa Johannesson

I saw Åsa talk about her work recently and I couldn’t wait to share it on here. The Boy & The Twins is an absolutely fabulous piece of work and her work in progress series Aryan looks absolutely superb also.

The way she interweaves the staged posed images of the boy against her own autobiographical images of her and her sister in their tomboy childhood is so beautiful and works so well. Coming from knowing quite a lot about and having experienced from others the issues and feelings around being transgender, I’ve felt in my own experiments how difficult a subject it is to tackle as an artist, as we are surrounded by imagery and projects on gender that I feel sometimes almost work against the feelings and reality of being transgender.

As far as I can see; to be trans is not necessarily to be flamboyant or loudly self-expressive, nor is it to comply to strict social rules on gender purely to blend in. It’s the ability to be yourself and be happy with that, much like everyone else. It’s not ABOUT becoming something else, it’s purely about being (and sometimes, becoming) yourself and being true to that. Anyway to move on, I love how she gently juxtaposes the two halves of boyhood. There’s a time in some trans individuals’ lives where they almost return to this boyhood or girlhood they perceive to have ‘missed’ and follow an accelerated version, returning back to secret dreams and desires they may have repressed (either consciously or subconsciously) from their childhood and perhaps adolescence. This idea is what comes across so strongly to me in the juxtaposing of the two images.

There’s an awkward sense of reflection on the part of Jacob, the boy; where it’s almost like the images of Johannesson and her sister become projections of his own subconscious past as perhaps two halves. Some might feel this split is about gender directly but others feel this split is between the physical body and the inner identity.

The Johannesson sisters are almost stalked by Jacob across the images, like he is observing them; perhaps their behaviour, perhaps just their twin-ness; much like one would observe animals on safari or in a zoo. Jacob’s poses suggest a sense of frustration and boredom which I feel is very telling of his own life story; there is always a lot of waiting and seeing involved.

Jacob holds a banana skin with a semi-clenched fist, his eyebrows sense a certain agitation, whether it’s because he is being photographed in the first place, play acting for the camera or if the image touches in on a subconscious frustration at the time. The banana’s reference to absence of full male genitalia is interesting especially as it appears like knuckle dusters, another subtle reference to masculinity.

Jacob and his partner stand on the path together; their clothes echo one another and they stand together staring out at us. The path looks fairly derelict and just behind them lies the remains of a broken children’s treehouse, once again whispering suggestions of boyhood. The image is named The Path, naturally echoing Jacob and many others’ journey ahead.

http://www.asajohannesson.com/

http://www.rca.ac.uk/Default.aspx?ContentID=504992&CategoryID=36646

Catching up

It’s been a while my pretties, I’ve been extremely busy with all sorts of projects. I’ve moved into doing a lot of creative writing, so if you can bear it, I’ll probably be posting up snippets of that soon.

I exhibited at a delightful little show called Lumière last week on Rivington Street (near Old Street), it was only a short show of 2 days but for the first time I exhibited the piece of work; Shatter. I had lots of excellent feedback as it is so different when showing it on the wall rather than on a website or in a book.

Almost every day of the past 2 weeks has been solidly full from dawn until midnight! There was Ben Roberts’ book launch on Monday, last night was the intelligence2 discussion on Art Photography at the Saatchi gallery and all sorts more! I’m guessing this surge of activity is due to the nights getting lighter. There is an overwhelming amount of excellent photography shows on at the moment, from the Saatchi Gallery, Michael Hoppen Gallery and the Tate Britain.

So much to see, so little time!

David Hockney RA Exhibition

I had the delightful opportunity to see Hockney’s new exhibition at the Royal Academy. I’m a big fan of Hockney, not all of his work but I feel he has something like no one else especially in regards to the photographic. His portraits are my favourites so as you can imagine I was slightly worried going to an exhibition of his made up solely of landscapes. However, I should never have worried as there were so many surprises.

I’d studied Hockney’s early work at school, especially being fascinated by a book in our library of his photo collages which after seeing a few times became a gimmick. Yet to be confronted with an image I had picked apart so much let me relive that first discovery. That first moment where you realise what he has done. It was wonderful.

I realise the exhibition has been blogged and spoken about by anyone and everyone but I’d like to use this opportunity just to say what jumped out to me the most. In this piece above his use of colour to push you away from others yet keep to the naturalness of the scene is genius. The delicate pink of the flowers in the shadows of the trees and the red orange of the leaves and earth in the light work beautifully together for example. I’m intrigued by his use of 6 canvases in one, when in the exhibition for me they just worked so well. Splitting up the painting like his previous photo collages yet never disturbing the eye. Amongst seemingly natural paintings were ones like the first I have listed on this blog where he moves between fantasy and the real, almost Van Gogh, back to the psychadelic sixties… it was something refreshing.

Walking into the Spring Room you are confronted with two large walls covered in beautiful prints of Hockney’s iPad drawings/paintings, I was spellbound by these. Walking up and down, walking closer and further away. They are at once completely and totally Hockney and yet you are still drawn back to the tool itself. Muchlike all hockney’s work, I like looking at them at a distance. I’m more concerned with the composition, use of colour and form in the paintings as opposed to the brushstrokes and the actual creation of the paintings.

The biggest surprise and probably my favourite element of the exhibition was Hockney’s use of moving image. You walked into a large dark room with 3×6 screens, where hockney had attached 9 cameras to his assistant’s car and had moved through the landscape slowly at different times of year. The cameras aren’t completely ligned up like his collages and so there is a disjointed relationship with the tracking of the movement and yet it is the best sense of 3D I’ve ever come across. It works a lot more like our eyes in that our eyes are not like cameras who can only focus on one view but have peripheral vision and can see much further. The silence of the video is haunting but works beautifully as the snow falls or the wind blows. He also had another surprise as with these landscapes he made some films in his studio with the same technique. I’m a big fan of dance, especially tap dancing and there was a fantastic tap dance routine with dancers in his studio where the bodies of the dancers were pulled and pushed together with the different viewpoints. It was like watching paint come together on a canvas before your eyes.

So there you have it, one of the best exhibitions I’ve seen in a while. Definitely worth negotiating the crowds.