Archives for posts with tag: visual art

Our final group blog post is from Ceramicist Jen Smith who worked with The Women’s Creative Company.  If you missed the chance to view their work at South Block then read on for a teaser of where to see it next! 

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As a ceramicist, I usually start a piece of work with a clear image in my mind of what it will be, right down the curve of a handle or the flashes of colour across the surface; this project was entirely different and liberatingly so.

Coming into an established group as welcoming, enthusiastic,  and outspoken as the Women’s Creative Company has been a total joy. It was clear very early on from our discussions and clay maquettes that there were several ideas that we wanted to communicate through our statue so talk turned to the best methods of using all of these sources without confusing our message.

I proposed a collaged surface which allows separate images to find new context through placement and association. We workshopped ideas by making test collages and reflected on how the meanings developed in ways we could use on our statue.

Through this organic method of working we found a shared voice and it became clear to have a woman in a wheelchair who represents every woman. Her feet are her roots with historical imagery of slavery and the suffrage movement, the plants and leaves growing there are wilting and stifled.

Her torso is collaged with photos of the many women who deserve statues in Glasgow surrounded with blooming flowers, their names embroidered alongside them – a nod to the textile industry in the Merchant City and to ‘women’s work’.

Her face lists the many professions and achievements of the women she represents alongside common derogatory words women often have to endure on their way to those respected positions. Her face is purposefully looking to somewhere in the distance, an acknowledgment that there is still somewhere more to go.

It is a celebration of what women have achieved and have yet to achieve; as colourful, glorious and diverse as the wonderful women who helped to make her.

Our statue will also be used as part of the Merchant City Festival performance by A Moment’s Peace Theatre working with Terra Inconita Arts so you can get a closer look there!

Jen

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Date & Times for Hidden Footprints at Merchant City Festival

  • SAT 29 JUL 201712.00PM – 1.00PM
  • SAT 29 JUL 20172.30PM – 3.30PM
  • SAT 29 JUL 20174.30PM – 5.30PM
  • SUN 30 JUL 201712.00PM – 1.00PM
  • SUN 30 JUL 20172.30PM – 3.30PM
  • SUN 30 JUL 20174.30PM – 5.30PM

We return to Govan Community Project this week to hear from Artist and Illustrator Alice Dansey Wright.  She fills us in on the progress the group have made in such a short space of time!  

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Rosie and I have been working with two groups within Govan Community Project- the Homework Group for kids on a Monday night and the Men’s Group on a Friday night. Both groups meet in the community flat in Cardonald, which is a normal flat that has been converted in to a series of community rooms and a kitchen. The Men’s group meet to play football, make new friends and eat a meal together. The group has a facilitator who is helped by two local volunteers- a university student and an S5 pupil.

Over the course of two 2-hour workshops with the men’s group we met four men in addition to the facilitator and volunteers. The men keep in touch using a WhatsApp group and the atmosphere is very relaxed and friendly, centered around the preparing, cooking and sharing of a meal (which Rosie and I were lucky enough to get a plate of too). Due to the relaxed atmosphere, slower pace and language ability of the group we were able to introduce the project in a more developed way which started with us discussing images and information about a series of existing Glasgow statues.

IMG_3342The men shared their insights and knowledge about Glasgow and overall were in agreement that representation of different cultures in public sculpture is important, alongside information about Glasgow’s industrial past such as the ship building trade. We also discussed protest, rebellion and activism – looking at the rallies, talks and gatherings around George Square and La Pasionaria, the statue of communist politician Dolores Ibarruri which commemorates the 534 British volunteers who joined the fight against Franco’s regime in the Spanish Civil War. The slogan ‘People Make Glasgow’ was brought up as one of the men had seen it all over the city and didn’t understand what it was for/what it meant. After discussing this we felt that the slogan reflected our ideas for the As I See It project well.

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The men were invited to develop a series of symbols that represented them as well as symbols that could represent Glasgow (which was a slight development on what we did with the Homework group). Despite some protestations about not being able to draw all of the group produced interesting drawings that were subsequently turned in to blocks and symbols for the statue making activity.

On the 2nd of June we held our big workshop/making day at Kinning Park Complex. Along with volunteers and staff from GCP both the men’s group and the kids from the Homework Group came together to collaboratively block print and paint a selection of t-shirts and a large piece of fabric which will be turned into our statue.

Alice

As I See It: Missing Statues culminates with a special event at South Block on Saturday 17th June where the statues will be unveiled. They will then be exhibited at South Block from 19th – 23rd June. For more info visit the Facebook event page.

It’s time to hear from Charlotte Duffy Scott – a cardboard artist who has been working with a group of visually impaired adults who meet regularly as part of the wider As I See It project.  Lets see what they have been up to!

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Working with the As I See It group challenged the way I thought about not just the act of making but the role and responsibility public art has to be truly accessible to everyone in the public. Sight still is the most depended upon sense when it comes to experiencing and consuming a lot of art; statues, paintings, sculptures, video installation – so much of it relies on a foundation of seeing what’s there in front of you but also the presumption that every one who looks at it will be able to see it in the same way as the artist did. We class so much as ‘visual art’ with little thought as to what means to those who are visually impaired.

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The piece we have created is collaborative in a way that I didn’t know was possible, the entire process has been an act of sharing and borrowing skills, views, experiences and opinions from one another in order to create something that, hopefully, can be appreciated through sound, or through touch, or through far away sight or close up sight. In each different way that it can be experienced a different story is told but with a shared foundation in expressing a different point of view.

IMG_20170503_151740Emmanuel has made the most intricate model of a plane. It is small but incredibly detailed and the viewer can see through the windows to the rows of tiny chairs inside, the propellers even spin when you blow on them.  My hands made this piece however it is entirely Emmanuel’s – each week he has described to me every single element he envisions from how many wheels it should have to the specific wingspan it needed. He drew imaginary lines with his fingers for where every cut and every join had to be. He told me off when it felt as though I hadn’t done exactly hat he had asked. We’ve made something together but he is the artist and I was a tool to achieve the image he had in his head.

On first meeting this group all told me of how they’d never made anything out of cardboard before and I replied that we were in the same boat because I’d never made anything without relying on my sight so we could learn together and make our own ways of doing things and representing things. And we truly have.

Charlotte

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As I See It: Missing Statues culminates with a special event at South Block on Saturday 17th June where the statues will be unveiled. They will then be exhibited at South Block from 19th – 23rd June. For more info visit the Facebook event page.

This week’s blog is from Drama Artist Rosie Reid.  Roise is working with Artist and Illustrator Alice Dansey Wright to create a statue with refugees in Govan.  Over to Rosie….

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Girls having fun at the Homework club with paint!

We have been invited into the Homework Club at the Govan Community Project as part of Terra Incognita’s project As I See It: Missing Statues. The Homework Club takes place from 4pm-6pmevery Monday and Wednesday at a ground floor flat, where most of the young residents of the block come down to help one another with their homework. There is lots of peer learning and activities going on and when we first arrived, Alice and I were swept away by the energy and community spirit within the club. 

We have been asking the young people a lot of questions, like what represents you? What are your ingredients? What makes you who you are? Through printmaking we have been creating our own symbols that represent who we are and what we care about. The group have been enjoying getting their hands dirty and pretending to be statues. The next time we meet we will be making our statue together. Creating an umbrella for which all of our symbols and all of our identities will be brought together.

Rosie

As I See It: Missing Statues culminates with a special event at South Block on Saturday 17th June where the statues will be unveiled. They will then be exhibited at South Block from 19th – 23rd June. For more info visit the Facebook event page.