contextual framework

 

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What informs my work is the link between the personal experience and the subject that I research. Land and the human, how the human is affected from this bond, how the human uses/destroys/works on/cultivates/manipulates/loves the land. How this bond has changed through the years, its different forms. At the same time the human has been and will be dependent and connected with the land. Our experiences are informed by our immediate environment, the society, the place that we live and the history. I explore ideas linked with time, space and memory/historical time line. I research on theoretical and political ideas, I usually support my work with a text based on my readings, and try to inform my work however to an extent that is understandable to the viewer.

 

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Exploratory project /week 1: further research on the almonds project

  • Women making lace work, as a break from the collection of the almonds or during periods when the collection has finished and they are waiting for the next season.
  • Patiently waiting for the next collection day or season.
  • As means of concentration/ thinking/ relaxation.
  • At the same time making something useful (to wear) or decorative (for their house).
  • I will try to create ink sketches resembling the lace image.
  • Collecting almonds vs. making lace / “important” work vs. “unappreciated” work
  • Definition of negative space (and time) – shading the dark parts and creating the shapes using the ink pens.
  • Attributing importance to an aspect of the main activity/situation/subject matter which is not visible at first glance, that has a secondary role, but at the same time has a contributing role.

an interview with Mary

seminar task: Duncan as the interviewer, Mary as the interviewee, me taking notes

I was impressed by Mary’s dedication and motivation to proceed with her solo show as part of her degree (something which was not compulsory to do), following a hand injury. She had to change the materials she was using as these were too heavy, and chose to use cloths instead. She must be very confident in working with a variety of different  materials.  Also, this means that she had researched her project very well, she must have had a strong basis in order to be able to switch from one  material to another.

mapping the research territory

I was thinking a way to approach this task, how to present it, what to include in this, images or not, just text, just a rough sketch. Because I wanted to create something that could be expanded in the future (this was an idea mentioned by Kirsty which I thought it was very interesting) I came up with idea of folded pieces of paper so that I could attach on them further pieces of paper in the future, with new approaches on my research. I did  not like the way this idea was developing, it is too structured, so I will attempt to create a sketch and  see how this one goes.

Notes on a past work / Les Bicknell workshop

The economic crisis in Greece and Cyprus was the mainspring for the collapse of Cyprus Laiki Bank.  The haircut of all deposits over Euro 100.000 of Laiki (also known as the Cyprus Popular Bank) and the final absorption of the bank’s operations by the Bank of Cyprus, have had a major negative impact upon the social/economic system, reflecting the false sense of stability that preceded the crisis in Cyprus.  Newly enacted laws introduced a new era of socio-economic norms in Cyprus through the imposition of very harsh special levies on all property owners, companies and sharp decreases in pensions and public sector salaries.

My Laiki bank credit card, that became invalid on 30th September 2014, is used as a direct reference to economic crisis in Cyprus as the issuing bank’s name is directly linked with the collapse of social/economic system in Cyprus. The card image reflects the unsecured stability that preceded the crisis in Cyprus and its catastrophic consequences that followed. I wished the work to have a direct link to Cyprus as a representation of the effects of the actions by the decision making political parties/politicians/financial bodies had on the majority of the Cypriots. Laiki, which in the eyes of Cypriots seemed solid  but which was actually rotten, was used as a medium representing the overall collapse of society as we knew it up to then.

This work was made specifically for the show It is the political economy, stupid (10th Oct-6th Dec 2014, Limassol, Cyprus). My research and bibliography was mainly focused on media articles, press announcements by Laiki Bank and legislation. The work is made of a plexi-glass box 80x60x20. On the front of the box I printed the Greek flag made out of images of my bank card. This is a reference to the investment in Greek bonds, this being one of the factors leading to the collapse in Cyprus. The number on the card was replaced by the numbers of the newly enacted laws that were passed by the Cyprus Parliament as a result of the crisis.  On the back of the box I printed quotes included in announcements by Laiki Bank aiming to convince customers and potential investors of the bank’s sustainability, eg.: 

The bank caters for individuals, small business and large organizations with services in International banking, foreign exchange and treasury, electronic banking, factoring, finance and leasing, insurance, investment and find management. Its international awards, technological leadership, customer-oriented approach and anthropocentric philosophy make Laiki Bank more than a Bank! (Nicosia, Cyprus, 31st  January, 2013) 

It is noted that the implementation of the Restructuring Plan, which commenced on an operational level in August 2012, is already contributing to the further enhancement of the efficiency and competitiveness of the Bank and with the Bank’s anticipated full recapitalisation, is expected to create conditions for a new era of growth for Laiki Bank Group, that would benefit both the Cyprus Economy and Cyprus as a whole.  (Nicosia, Cyprus, 12th  March 2013)

 

The History of Art

 

(artworks: http.katiehollandlewis.com, Cezanne’s Bathers)

Thinking about history of art, to my mind everything is interconnected. Picasso, Matisse and Kandinsky were influenced by Cezanne. Picasso was also influenced by African art and masks. Cezanne was influenced by Rembrandt, Poussin and Delacroix, admiring his use of colour as well as Monet’s. Renoir was also influenced by Delacroix and from his visits to North Africa and orientalistic works like Women of Algeria. Delacroix admired David’s work (although at the time the then media were supporting a rivalry between the two, use of colour vs use of line). Delacroix was influenced by Guerin, Gericault, Rubens and Michelangelo and by English artists like Lawrence. The ancient Roman and Greek art formed the basis for the representation of a flawless body during the Renaissance. So there is a continuous back and forth in time, with several more connections to be made, and although we can identify movements and styles and place them chronologically, the interconnection between them is what I consider being more striking. That is why in my sketches I have avoided a hierarchy or a central point, with the interconnecting lines as references to the influences from one artist to the other, influences from the nature and the human body when considering ancient arts.

Reading: J. Elkins, Stories of Art, Abingdon, Routledge (2002) pp 1-38