NEO:Artists – Artist in Residence: Day 15

Day Fifteen – 29th March, 2017:

Good evening!
It’s been a fairly relaxed and slow day today, similar routine to the usual. Breakfast, which is now actually yoghurt with honey and maple & pecan granola (it’s delicious).  Had an early start, around 8:00AM and the weather was miserable, overcast and raining. Naomi and I arrived at the studios for 9:30AM. Naomi began her revision and I began cutting into my failed screen prints from Monday’s printing session.
Here’s a flick of a work in progress, there’s more to come with this for sure:

I have begun to create new architectural forms from the failed prints. I intend on giving these sculptural, three-dimensional prints an element of organic origin, or in essence, a sense of movement and fluidity that could be represented as organic forms.

The Urban & Natural Landscape

As I mentioned in the previous post I am interested in both the urban and the natural landscapes. I believe this is due to spending a lot of my time in both opposing landscapes. I am currently undertaking an MA at the University of Arts, London (U.A.L), Camberwell, UK and I originate from Banbury, Oxfordshire.
I spend half on my week in either London or Banbury and commute by car or train between the two. Switching between these two vastly different ecosystems, ‘The City’ and ‘The Countryside’, has allowed my understandings of the urban and natural landscape to develop with regards to architecture, space and a newly found interest in development with regards humans thirst for growth. Spending an equal time in both the natural and urban landscape has allowed for a rift to form within my contextual understanding of my creative practice. I am still very much attached to both sides of what I am beginning to understand as a battle between nature and man. It would appear that within the urban landscape you are greeted by the hard, stark architectural forms, intricate spaces, changing perspectives and the fast moving organism of man, whereas in the natural landscape there are wide open expanses of space and natural forms giving an overwhelming sense of freedom.
In the city, it seems that nature is cast aside or sometimes even treasured in small pockets of this new architectural concrete jungle. I feel at times this can be seen as a neglect or disrespect for what is pure in this world. I traverse for over an hour and a half through London and I am greeted by grey architectural forms and encaged natural environments, trees being confined to their 2 x 2 meter squares, imprisoned in their own soil. It appears to me that as a race we are expanding and growing and giving little concern to what is our true home, planet Earth.
This leads me on to the other side of this ongoing battle between the two forces, Earth – the natural landscape, the purity in this planet, the untouched. It appears we are provoking our provider, draining Earth of its blood (oil), devastating its lungs (rainforests/ deforestation/ contamination of the sea), encrusting its skin with metal and concrete (architectural forms) and barricading it in with a wall of floating metal in the stratosphere (satellites). Earth has already begun to retaliate, ‘since 1990, natural disasters have affected about 217 million people each year and there were three times as many natural disasters between 2000 and 2009 compared to 1980-1989.’[1] It is here in this understanding that we cannot escape our fate, we bite the hand that feeds us, we cannot expect to get away with the way we are treating our home. In essence, no matter how much we try to encage nature, we will always be confined by it.

Detail of Etching and Offset Embossing, 2017

Here you can see my representation of my interest in the urban and natural landscape. An embodiment of architecture confined to an organic form. Mary Iverson has a similar vision and interest with regards to humans interaction with the planet. She focuses mainly within the shipping industry and it’s effects on the environment. Kristin Farr from Juxtapoz Magazine wrote in the  August 2015 edition:

“Mary Iverson is an exquisite landscape painter with a razor-sharp contemporary edge. On the surface, we see activism, her collages and paintings warning us of a dystopic future existence. But the truth is, this apocalpyse is happening now. Through her paintings of rogue shipping containers invading precious, untouched vistas, she uncovers the gross excess and collateral damages of the shipping industry, and untimately, commercialism.”

I admire her use of architectural lines and simplistic use of colour which underpins her concern for our environments regarding its current state of affairs.
Here is, View from Esalen, oil on canvas, 30 x 30 inches:

I hope you have enjoyed reading today’s post! It’s not all doom and gloom though, I promise! I’m off, Over and Out! x