30 March 2011
29 March 2011
28 March 2011
The final idea took as its starting point the Goa stones being seen as a panacea in their time, and regarded as foolish magical thinking from our point of view today, when we have drugs to target specific ailments. Do we have any ideas about contemporary panaceas, and what kind of ailments would they be particularly useful for? Well, there's money - if anything goes wrong, throwing money at it usually helps. And of course there are lots of things wrong with contemporary society. So I developed the idea of "a panacea for society's ills" - a medieval-looking moneybag, sumptuous on the outside (like the fancy cases the stones were kept in) and with the "ills" written inside.
The "soft money" was a non-starter; and the metal coins looked silly and crude - but the glass and stones that I came across while rooting around made me think of something else -
After making a list of society's ills (a long list!) I chose some and screenprinted them onto silk, using the puff binder to give the words a slightly sticky feel -
Out to the Parkland Walk to gather some smooth, round stones (wasn't sure how many I might need...) -
And here are the first of the moneybags - two are velvet, the third was the prototype; one more to make, to replace the prototype -
The contents - easter eggs??! -
Just one stone is much better -
I'd like to write "THROW ME" on the stones - a futile gesture, isn't it....
26 March 2011
25 March 2011
We would have liked to see some books post-1993 (the book was published in 1994 and republished, with an "author's preface to the new edition", unchanged in 2004 - about which there was some speculation), and had some questions of who these books were directed at - preaching to the converted? Do such books become historical artefacts; where can they be found (they're hardly mainstream) and what sort of effect does this invisibility give them - indeed, how would you use an artist's book to have a social effect? would you have to be subversive, to pamphleteer -- and how would you compete with other media? who would be interested, anyway? how would you catch their interest, perhaps by relating to their lives a bit...
Fabric with words printed in puffer-paste (more of this later, there'll be no avoiding it) ... and once those were done, back to the "journey lines" on paper. The grey-yellow-white combination has long been one of my favourites - note to self: Use it more -
The final print for the day (dark bit on the left) - backing sheets and papers all layered up, and some of the masking (to protect the red area) already removed -
One task for the weekend is to go through the sheets already printed to see if some can be regarded as "finished". On many of them, small areas are left unprinted - originally my intention was to leave these "open" but I seem to be losing sight of that, and the project is evolving in a different way, into lots of small areas of different colours, along with "accidental" overlaps. Also, it was meant to be random, and I find myself being very careful with what goes where. Are there rules, or aren't there rules??
"The effect is calm, meditative, otherworldly — as if McCall is expertly manipulating moonbeams, or somehow tethering the Northern Lights within a gallery.
"All four works, presented in the UK for the first time, were made since 2004, shortly after McCall — who was recently commissioned by the Arts Council to create Column, a twisting spiral of cloud that will rise above the River Mersey as part of the 2012 Cultural Olympiad — began producing art again after a hiatus of two decades." says this article.