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Monday, 18 July 2011

Artist's Statement – What to Write?

I need to submit my Artist's Statement today that will be used in the exhibition at the New Brewery Arts called the Art of Childsplay that opens this Saturday the 23rd of July and I will have a selection of my work exhibited amongst other fantastic artists.

I’ve been trying to write my artist's statement now for a while. I’ve cut and pasted various sentences from different ‘about me’ sections of my website etc. but I don’t think I still got it right. What is an artist’s statement?

Am I suppose to state what I do and why I do it? Are readers interested in my background or more of how I created any particular object? Are people really reading all these in an exhibition?

Maybe the statements are like a good story: crab people's attention right at the beginning and maybe you have a chance them reading the whole story.

I suppose my trouble is that I still don’t consider my self as an artist and therefore I have never really looked at my work from an artist point of you. I’ve always thought of myself as a maker. Someone who creates by making something solid.

I very rarely sit down and think first as what I am about to make. In fact I never do that! I never think of a message that I am trying to convey to the others. I just simply make and I love it. I love the process of making. Call it fiddling, I can fiddle for hours without any reason at all! Is that good enough bases for an artist’s statement? Probably not....

Then there are the materials and colours, should I have a reason better than I just think the materials and colours work on my items?!
I haven’t been on a search for different techniques or materials. I haven’t tried to find anything new and ground braking. I just make things from what I like at the time.

Now having written all that down and have read it back I realized that it is not all true. I suppose I do think a bit as what I do. I chose to use the woollen fabrics because they are local and I love the quality of it all. I love going to the mill and see what they have, what wonderful ends of rolls they have pulled out this time.

I realized I often buy fabric because I like it not because it is for something particular. In fact the fabric often tells me what it want to be made into. For example, I bought bright yellow fabric not even liking yellow that much, but I just had to have it. I tried to think as what to do with it to justify the cost, but I couldn’t think anything at all. Of course I bought it feeling a little guilty, but then much later on the light bulb switched on and I exclaimed: “lions”. That is what the fabric will be used for!

I’ve also have fabric waiting to be made into a frog and another into a Kingfisher, but I haven’t got that far yet.

And when it comes to the Bears I simply go through my fabrics until I find something that crabs my attention on that day. After the Bear is made I think of the accessories. What would this Bear like to wear today....? And right in the end I name the Bear and that is when my work is done.

I suppose now I have to get all this into much shorter form....

Nearly finished... 

Monday, 4 July 2011

Time Flies

Wow – the last posting was written last November! Where did the seven months disappear?!!!

So much has happened since then and I vaguely remember thinking that I must post a proper update and then it would be easier to write about other things when the 'basic info' has been dealt with.
But then more and more happened and eventually this simple task of recording the changes became daunting and only now I am willing to face it.

Sad really since the last half a year or so has been absolutely incredible and it would have been nice to share it with those that ever wonder here to my pages. Now all I may offer is bullet points...... Or is that cheating? All I can say that if I embark on the journey of telling you every detail you'll be here for a very long time and in fact you will probably never return since it was such a painfull experience. Nobody of course are forced to read on, but just in case you did.

So here is the bullet point list of what has been going on in my life and to make it a little easier I have tried to illustrate every point with a picture.

December 2010
* Christmas sales were incredible and I had a lovely time in Selvedge Christmas Fair.
* I got my second order from Liberty through.
* Very exciting, but a tiring month.

January 2011
* I moved my studio to Cirencester to the New Brewery Arts.
What I thought would fit into max. two Volvo car fulls took at least six goes and then lots and lots of other journeys with more and more bits and bobs.
* Very stressful, but very exciting times. I meant to document it all, but now I don't even have a photo to illustrate the whole move!

* We would have hoped to find a new place to live, but failed miserably. Luckily a friend of hours let us to stay at hers whilst the search for home continued.
* The Country Living Magazine featured my little brown mouse and The Gardens Illustrated featured my Blackbirds and Mouse and the sales rocketed.
* Very confusing month, but I was getting settled in my new studio and was very busy with orders.
* I decided to take our dog in and she took upon herself to bark at every single person who came in. Very annoying.

* The search for a new home continued and we grew even more stressed out and tired, but the business was going well.
* The dog carried on her barking and I think there was a mutiny on the way against her since her barking echoed everywhere! Plus the better I knew the person, the more she barked.

* We found a new home and moved.
* The whole month seemed to whizz by with the move. How did that happen?
* I started making girl bears inspired by a new commission.

* Mirjami Design took part in the Stroud International Textile Fair and Open Studio Trail was great fun.
* The fifth Liberty order was in the making and the new summer range made from Liberty fabrics was finally done.
* Horrid cold/flu took its toll and things were falling behind.
* The Dog stop barking!!!!! I forgot how quiet Brewery Arts can be.

* I started developing new animals: fox, frog, mole, elephant etc. were forming in my mind and then on the paper followed by numerous misshapen creatures that are still in making.
* The mid summer came and went and my thoughts turned to Cxxxxxxxs (won't dare to say the word aloud...)

And now we are in July!!! So there you are, not too painful :)