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As I build upwards, I smooth the rectangular coils into place. Sometimes I will need to modify the shape fairly drastically, So in one picture I have cut a section where I will be able to insert some more clay. Sometimes I need to do the opposite and remove areas.
After continuing past the neck, I need to make sure the clay is firm enough to support the head. This also affects the shape slightly and how far the jaw protrudes.
With the basic form in place, I let the clay firm up a little before refining the shape and deciding how to proceed with the facial features and details. TBC
I’m a big fan of the artist, Yoshitomo Nara. He is hugely successful and popular in Japan, being treated like a Pop Star rather than an Artist. This is not the reason why I like his work. It is rather because he has created a world that is unique, special and strong. The characters he portrays may seem vulnerable but on inspection they have their own power that can withhold the (sometimes) corrupting influences of the outside world and grown-ups.
Although familiar with his work in print and on the web, (paintings, drawings, acrylic sculpture and ceramics) I think I have only seen one of his sculptures before when visiting the Japan Society in New York. So I was thrilled to see his works at the Dairy Arts Centre in London recently.
This was a major display of his work that included both large and small paintings, bronze sculptures, envelope drawings and detailed graphite drawings. When viewing his paintings and cartoon-esque drawings, I renewed my familiarity with his world, and reminded myself that I do, indeed respect and admire the strength and consistency of his vision. What really stood out for me though, were his graphite pencil drawings that I saw for the first time. These showed another side to his characters’ personalities, by using such a different mark (a fine graphite line) and working the surface intensively, he really adds something new to his rich output.
Many thanks to those who were instrumental in bringing this exhibition to our shores.
There is more information about Nara on Artsy.net here.
Phew! It has been a very busy time for me at Bath Spa University recently. Although the summer holidays are normally quiet, MA students like myself were putting the final touches to their work in time for the Degree Show that ran from Friday 19th to Wednesday 24th September.
I’ve just finished installing the work I completed for the final double masters module at Bath Spa Uni. The work was assessed today and will have to stay in place for a couple of days before the show opens at the end of the week to the public. Between wednesday and friday I expect to be frantically (?) re-arranging things and making extra bits for the evening.
The private view will take place on Friday 19th September from 6-9 pm at Bath Spa University, Sion Hill Campus, BA1 5SF. The official link is here.
Here are two of my large heads, now finished.
On Friday 8th August, my Rogues went on display at The Sri Chinmoy Centre Gallery in Edinburgh (details here). It turned out to be a great event. My gratitude goes to Alan Spence who did a wonderful job of overseeing the programme and Mio Shapley who played the koto and sang beautifully. Here are some photos of the evening.