New Work: Weighing The Sublime (Photographs l, ll & lll)

Weighing The Sublime Photo l small

Weighing The Sublime Photo ll small

Weighing The Sublime Photo lll small

I blogged recently about a video piece I was working on. As well as the film, I decided to take a series of photographs that show the stages of progression. This series of three photographs is called Weighing The Sublime (Photographs l,ll & lll).

“Another angel came in holding a censer of gold. He took his place at the altar of incense and was given large amounts of incense to deposit on the altar of gold in front of the throne, together with the prayers of all God’s holy ones. From the angel’s hand, the smoke of the incense went up before God, and with it the prayers of God’s people.”
(From the Book of Revelations)

When incense is burnt in Catholic ceremonies it is meant to carry the prayers of the congregation up to heaven. As the incense burns its mass and also weight decreases. The difference in weight from the burnt and unburnt incense therefore correlates to the weight of the prayers. It is an attempt to understand and rationalise religious belief and spirituality.

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My Midlands Art Trail: Damien Hirst, Ron Mueck, Pauline Boty and Shimabuku

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This bank holiday weekend I have been visiting the in-laws in Wolverhampton. On Saturday I was keen to visit the local art gallery as they had the first ever retrospective exhibition of work by Pauline Boty. As a founder of the British Pop art movement, Boty was hugely influential in her day but tragically died young and has since, sadly, been largely forgotten. Her work is now rarely displayed, but I am a huge fan so it was a real treat.

We decided to turn the day into a bit of a West Midlands art trail, visiting three of the areas best galleries; the Wolverhampton Art Gallery, the Ikon Gallery in Birmingham and the New Art Gallery in Walsall. Living in London it is easy to forget about regional galleries. We think of the capital as the centre for all art in Britain but it is just one part. There are fantastic, innovative and important shows happening in art establishments up and down the country. For me, it was a real treat to be able to find out more about the Midlands art scene.

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Amazon Art and what is going on my wishlist…

I recently wrote about the newly launch Amazon Art marketplace (currently only on the US site) for The Metro -

Sotheby's print and ceramic sale

One-click art: How Amazon is changing the art market

Amazon have just launched a fine art marketplace on their US site. Original and limited edition pieces by some of the world’s most famous artists are now available to all, with one click of a button. But what impact will this have on the way we view art?

Many had worried that the launch of Amazon Art would mark the beginning of the end for small galleries. However the business model they have currently adopted means that unlike independent bookshops, our galleries should be safe (for now).

Amazon does not buy the works themselves, in the same way they do with books. Instead they have partnered with a number of commercial galleries who are able to list their art. Amazon then takes a percentage commission on any sales. However, if the art marketplace is a success, Amazon might start to demand price cuts and exclusivity, which could be damaging to smaller businesses.

As is stands now, Amazon Art could actually be a boost for some galleries. They have now been made accessible to a much larger audience. Amazon has millions of customers and a huge PR machine behind them. The potential for promotion is huge.

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Painting Class at The London Academy of Art #3

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At the end of week three and I think my jug might finally be finished. Though, I am not happy with the final drawing, so would happily spend a bit longer on it if I get the chance.

I spent the entire three hours continuing to blend my dark tones and shadows, then building up even more shading to create tones within the darker areas. At the end of the class Chris, our tutor, advised me to bring a canvas to the next lesson – so he might be planning on moving me onto actual paint. However, I suspect that transferring the image onto canvas is also a long process and with only one of my four lessons left, I don’t think I am going to get that far!

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Smoke Portraits by Donato Sansone

I don’t know if it is just because I have been making a video that involves lots of smoke (see my previous post) or because they look so reminiscent  Bacon paintings, but I have become a bit obsessed with these video portraits by Italian artist Donato Sansone. I discovered them via the Huffington Post and they have really stayed with me. Terrifying, haunting yet still strangely beautiful. I love the surreal nightmarish quality they have.

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New Work…

Recently I have been working on a video piece that I am very excited about. Having been in the ‘development’ stage for years I first came up with the concept in university. I have now finally shot it! I won’t go into to many details yet, as it is still being edited, but I wanted to share a still from it, as a sneak preview.

Weighing the Sublime (film still)

Video is a new medium for me, but one that I really love, so I it has been a really fun experiment. And it feel so good to see this idea that has been brewing in my mind for nearly four years finally realised.  I am really pleased with how it is looking and can’t wait to be able to show it properly!

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Painting Class at The London Academy of Art #2

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After my artistic confidence was knocked a little bit last week, I was slightly nervous about returning for my second art class. Last week I struggled to draw a simple still life. I have to say my heart sank a tiny bit when I was told to go and get my same drawing again. I had wanted a fresh bit of paper and the chance to make up for past mistakes.

However, I found this weeks tasks a bit easier and much more satisfying. Chris, the tutor, told me he was going to be teaching me about light and shade. Firstly he had me go over the outlines of my drawing with a charcoal pencil. I thought this would be a good chance to rectify the wonky lip of my jug, but no, it seems to be beyond repair. I tried and tried but I just cannot draw it. I don’t now what is wrong with me!

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