Assignment four: Reflection

After concluding my theorisation in A3, I set about using A4 to bring this concept into the public space. This is not only an evolution of formations as a strategy, but also a return to A1, where I presented my notational impulses of photographing shadow patterns which I regard as a form of ephemeral street art. Even now I continue to make notations whenever inspired. Together with my approach to framing shadow patterns within a standardised form of A4 paper before returning a 1:1 scale rendering to its place of creation; a way of seeing has evolved both for interior and exterior spaces which is interconnected in its various forms.

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Reflection: Drafting interventions

Back in May I had the opportunity to finish my time up in Liverpool by putting into practice the theory for my BoW in the public space, before heading to my new pastures of Kuala Lumpur. While this wasn’t completely a now or never situation, my coming 6-12 months will be limited to the domestic space where I could, in theory continue with my formations strategy which is based upon working within the confines of home much like Uta Barth. In addition my accessibility to photo quality printing is not the same as what I had previously in my studio space, making the logistics of the process more inhibiting.

There was a sense of unknown how the ideas would translate outside, however I had undertaken plenty of research beforehand on site-specificity and participation. After a period of getting the technique and process right, I gathered 6 completed interventions on the public space around Liverpool.

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Reflection: Case studies and learnings

As I mentioned in my previous post, I have started working with my ideas of shadowgrams and formations in the public space.

I quickly realised that working with a camera setup was too slow and intrusive. Much like my notations and many of my earlier OCA projects, I drew on the incognito characteristic of the smartphone which allows me greater mobility and dexterity in operating within the public realm. My ‘gear’ was now reduced to a simple A4 wallet which I carried chalk (for dark surfaces and paint stick (for light surfaces) and an A4 card to mark the space. I could then use the wallet for transporting the prints for installation. In a way, the wallet has become part of the “…presence of the artist…” which then “…endows places with a ‘unique’ distinction.” (Kwon, 1997, p.105).

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Reflection: Entering the public space

This case study is grounded in the theory I presented in A3 in a domestic space. While I considered those earlier formations to be a form of visual meditation, the interventions in the public space take on a dynamic course of action akin to street art. The process requires a “fluid mobility” that embraces “…site specificity as a nomadic practice.” (Kwon, 1997, p.100).

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Reflection: A matter of scale

Prior to entering the public space to commence with experimenting for A4, I have had (too much) time to consider how my A4 paper placeholders will be affectively used. Scale becomes a matter of concern in making a coherent formation. Shadows outside are significantly larger outdoors compared to the contained graphic compositions in the image space when working indoors. So if I was to try to create a mosaic of time and light on an exterior surface, I will need to consider the size of the object that the shadow is being cast from.

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Assignment three: Tutor report

As I mentioned in my reflection, I am very satisfied with how the critical thinking has developed in A3. Especially after some of the convoluting of theory in A2. So not only am I pleased to see this rewarded in my tutor report, but also the encouragement to continue to read and take risks in my work. Overall the report was very positive and through my tutorial and follow-up emails with Robert, I was able to find a good balance of theory without creating a referential overload. My thinking has been quite deep for what looks a simple abstraction process, but I think the continued sharing with my tutor and study group peers has helped me to distill this into something much more concise.

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Assignment three: Reflection

The process of A3 has been an interesting development in my BoW. From my initial progression past A2 I was confronted with the great doubt, initially feeling the need to defend my work, or more specifically, the purpose of it. I acknowledged that the personal meditation was not substantial enough as a point of entry and the use of video didn’t quite work. However I remained steadfast in the basic idea, I just needed to more succinctly express what I am doing and why. And so a period of reading and research helped me to articulate the areas of documentation, process, representation and site-specificity.

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Reflection: The Shadowgram antithesis

After catching up on my last experiments with the shadowgram last week. I finally reached a state of being up to date in both BoW and CS for all the work I had carried out. So without having any outstanding works for once I posed myself a quick assessment and mini challenge.

The central idea of the shadowgram strategy is to return the abstract image back to its place of capture; therefore leaving an intervention on the ‘physical space’, while the standardised A4 paper print occupies the ‘image space’. David Campany writes about these spatial considerations saying when we see “What Sander called the “mosaic” of the photographic assembly is an expression of the mosaic nature of bodily and spatial experience.” (Campany, 2018).

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Reflection: Artwork in the public space?

Watching a rerun of a documentary recently on Antony Gormley, What do artists do all day?, I was struck by a couple of initial statements he makes. Gormley, who has an installation Another Place in nearby Crosby says “Sculpture puts something into the world that wasn’t there before.” (What do artists do all day?, Episode 12, 2014). And through this intervention “To that bit of the world, the setting of the world is changed.” I considered in broader terms, isn’t this the case when any artwork enters the world? In the public space, in order to install a piece of art in public, the ownership of the work is relinquished to the space itself. And therefore any further interventions would also be a casualty of the previous expression. It is in this spirit that I enjoy the work of Gormley, together with James Turrell and Richard Serra, that thy evolve sculpture into a kind of experiential placeholder.

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Assignment two: Tutor report

I received the feedback for A2 Shadowgram from my tutor. Here I will break down how I would like to reflect on the input.

Firstly the thing I disagree with is that I haven't explained my ideas in my notes. At the very least I would say that I have been clear in how I came to the creative strategy and developed it. I wrote posts that established the idea, consolidated it through printing, replaced printing with post-production and lastly played with exposure time. I also wrote about how the work of Uta Barth challenged me on how to differentiate my approach photographing light on the interior space.

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Reflection: Projections

As I mentioned in my last post, I have been exploring the impact of time on my initial impulses of my notations.

The two examples I referred to I also set up the camera to record the evolution of the image (like a time-lapse). Time-lapse itself is now a technique used to speed up time to demonstrate the changes of a subject or event. What I see being primarily interested in the still image, is how this sequencing is how we select/deselect images. Likewise how we remember certain memories and disregard others.

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Assignment two: Reflection

I found submitting this assignment an intensely practical challenge which I will outline below. When reflecting on the criteria for BoW I find it important at this juncture to acknowledge a synergy; of consolidated learning from the last module, my initial expectations set out in my artist statement and the presence of mind to engage with peers suggestions, tutor feedback and tangents that come up in research and the course itself.

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Reflection: Exposure vs luminosity

In my first shadowgram study I explored the evolving image from a fixed position like a mindfulness meditation offering a conveyor of images piercing and disappearing from the frame. My second study was an uninterrupted light reflection that gradually moved out of position.

My third experiment with a shadowgram works with the fading of the light source (the sun) at the end of the day in response to a quote by György Kepes, that "Light rays covering an image are able to interpenetrate one another, light increases light, shadow deepens shadow. The result is greater intensity." (Kepes, 1944/2012, p.80). As this intensity depreciates, the shadow pattern is affected in the face of increased exposure times.

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Assignment one: Tutor report

I received my feedback for A1 Shadow and Surface from Robert. I have been reluctant to move too far ahead with my ideas for BoW in order to acknowledge the input.

This assignment was executed only with my smartphone, although I have been carrying out further experiments with my camera in the domestic space. The feedback for the use of the smartphone has been very positive from Robert as in my previous module and his encouragement of the risk element in my work was nice to read. It seems to tap into the impulsiveness of street photography without creating a story. Robert expressed a little concern about me being more interested in form over content, and not to dismiss content but to find a balance. Perhaps I should clarify here a little, it is more that I am not interested in narrative and that abstraction is the direction I am pursuing.

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