We're a mean lot at AA2A! Where some organisations have an expensive website built for them, we've always used 'Open source' software and employed clever techy people to adapt it for us. Although Dotbiz can be a bit clunky, this approach has saved us a fortune over the years. However it was starting to look a bit dated. Our current 'Web Guru' Robin will be trying out some of our ideas for visual improvements over the next few weeks, so you may see a few changes, some of which we'll keep. We won't move things around too much as we know that our dyslexic artists in particular, find that an real headache. The biggest change you'll notice is that we're looking at a different version of the 'sidebar' (on the left hand side of the homepage) because it can really slow down the loading of the page.
Wish us luck and do let us know if something looks awful e.g. overlapping text, images etc
Well, I have finally figured out that the chromatography idea was to do with identity, having the chromatographs as a kind of DNA profile of the colours and linking this to ideas around disability, identity and culture. So, much research to be undertaken of articles/key texts about disability, culture and identity, now I have my Uni log on. I have decided that the work will consist of three elements; the chromatographs printed onto fabric to hang on the wall, and the printed fabric cut up and roughly attached to clothing bought in charity shops, and a triptych painting in the appropriate colour. The number three kept coming up so I decided I will choose three colours, one each from magenta, cyan and yellow. This does mean that I can't do purple, my favourite colour, but never mind. I have a pack of chromatography paper at home so will be eperimenting with different colour paints, and then when I have chosen the colours will get the chromatography done by a proper lab. I plan to be in Chester next Thursday, November 24th, and will be wandering around aimlessly formulating weird ideas in my head.
The first few weeks have flown by and our 5 Artists are settling in well to the scheme and initial feedback is very positive. It was very useful having a lunchtime session for Artists to meet each other and get a full tour of the facilities and this is something we will do again next year. There is an exhibition coming up in December for the 2015/16 Artists so it will be good for the new Artists to see what can be achieved from the Scheme at first hand.
Well, I suppose any new endeavour seems daunting when you first start it, but then, where would we be without trying new things? That, at least is the rationale for my having a go at the bloggersphere, so, here goes. I hope to be able to share my thoughts and experience of talking to and observing the lovely artists who have joined aa2a this year. Mainly, I am heartened by how 'creatives' for want of a better word, across all kinds of disciplines, are both completely self-assured and not-so-sure about their practice, at the same time. It is a relief.
It is a great feeling when you're in a state of flow, and know what to spend you time doing - whether it works or not. The worst bits (for me), are the foggy bits when what you are doing seems a bit....er, vague.
I hope to be able to share the insights and experiences of the artists as they go through their journey of making and presenting. And, hope also, to share my practice as I learn more about fitting my performance background into a fine art context.
The one thing I know for sure, is, I'm loving it.
With fellow AA2A artists Matt Evans & Caitriona Dunnett, we`ve decided to make a bit of an impact with the Coventry students. What better than to stage an exhibition in the University`s Glass Box Gallery. How do you make the impact ? Easy, the show`s called "BOO !"
Its viewable 24 hours a day in Earl Street, from 16th to 29th November.
This is my second year as a student rep for AA2A (the perks of the part-time life). Last year my obsession was balloons. I collected balloons, I drew balloons, I painted balloons. In fact I lived, breathed and dreamed balloons. I blogged about balloons. I was infamous for a while as the 'lady who collects balloons'. I finally made them in bronze. I loved my balloons.
This year, I've turned my attention to something a little more abstract and a little less tangible than the colourful rubber remains I collected off the streets of Shrewsbury and Wolverhampton: repetition.
I've thought a lot about repetition. I've read a lot about it too. There is a huge amount of repetition in our lives, in all sorts of ways: in literature, poetry, art, routine, life choices and food choices. This turned out to be a vast subject.
I devised the #FreeRepublicofRepetition and spread the word amongst my friends and acquitances on social media.
I'm not sure where this project is going yet, but I have become quite obsessed already with the concept. Everything is repeating
I have created a website: www.freerepublicofrepetition.com.
If you happen to find yourself on the 7th Floor of the Wolverhampton School of Art you will see some of my posters. Someone is taking them down. I keep putting more up. The ideas keep flowing. They are repeating, like gremlins.
Repetition. Repetition. Repetition.
The first few weeks of my beong on the AA2A scheme has coincided with the launch of Lady of Situations piece which I have developed by collaborating with Seni Seniveratne, a writer based in Sheffield. The piece has enabled me to explore issues such as containment, power, disaffection and gender through the use of photogrpahy, video, music, words and live performance> Collaboration has been at the core of the piece and as it has been funded through Arts Council England and supported through Sheffield's own Off the Shelf Festival of Words, it has meant that other srtists from Sheffield and the Peak District have been commissioned to produce specific artworks for both the exhibition and performances.Working in this way is what interests me most - being able to build a piece that has the involvement and expertise of a number of different artists, musicians, sculptors, fine art pefumier, actors, theatre Director and writer has ensured an exciting and diverse approach to what I consider, important and contemporary issues that resonate within a global, political landscape.
The piece was launched at Theatre Delicatessen, in Sheffield to an almost packed venue - we have received very welcome comments and a lot of love from people who came to see the piece. There's still time to catch the performance and exhibition as it moves from bank Street Arts, where it is currently to Exchange Place Studios where I am based as a practitioner and producer.
Exhibition - Monday 21 November to Friday 2 December, Exchange Place Studios, Exchange Place, Sheffield S2 5SZ
Performance – Friday 25 November, Exchange Place Studios, Exchange Place, Sheffield S2 5SZ
Please see vanitasarts.co.uk for more details and extracts from the piece
This year at Plymouth University the AA2A has welcomed three local artists to the residency including Andrew Meredith, Llyr Davies and myself (Francesca Hawkesworth). Our aim is to create new bodies of work, pushing and testing the boundaries within our practices through workshops and studio time. The AA2A gives us a platform to also build up a relationship engaging with students and university staff to create a wider network of artists.
Please explore our websites and watch this space for updates!