Twist Bend Fold!

Here's the first installment of pictures from my latest adventures in paper sculpting at the Hepworth this week, as we took inspiration from American artist Lynda Benglis' dynamic pleated sculptures and forms.

Twist Bend Fold explores the art of the fold in the new Clore Learning Studio. It continues in May and June. Hope to see you there soon!

Thanks to Hilary, Leslie, Adele and Susie for all their hard work and enthusiasm helping out during busy workshops!

 

Perpetual Paper Play

 

Happy 2015! I entered the new year surrounded by piles of folded paper forms (again!) this week.

 

I've been busy testing out a new camera and the new spotlights in the recently refurbished learning studio at the Hepworth Wakefield over the festive break. I've really enjoyed capturing the amazing ideas and creations people have come up with in my 3D Structures workshop, in response to a large-scale, geometric foot by Toby Ziegler, commissioned as part of the Conflict and Collisions: New Contemporary Sculpture exhibition. The exhibition coincides with WWI commemorations and juxtaposes historical battle scenes with contemporary sculpture, considering themes of war (historical and contemporary), the inter-relation of humans and machines, digital technologies and 3D printing. 

 

I wanted to examine the nature of paper folding as a way to demonstrate geometrical constructions, creating repeat shapes, patterns, positives, negatives, and concrete or abstract 3D forms. Ziegler's sculpture was partly created through machine but finished by hand and it was this interplay I found interesting to question. In the case of the studio workshop, participants explored the art of folding, geometry, symmetry and reflection with various templates or tessellating prints which they could either completely ignore or use as starting points for geometric 3D forms. 

 

Some focused on the theme of war, creating paper sculpted dioramas of war machinery, escape tunnels and air-raid bunkers or strange war-like creatures. Others took a more positive approach and for many children (and adults), their folded forms began to represent mini architectural models for utopian playgrounds, perhaps inspired by the play area outside. In any case, I was blown away by the work created.

 

Start the new year as you mean to go on.

 

My Colourful Pop-Up World

It's the last few days of My Colourful Pop-Up World at Tate Liverpool! We've been responding to the Mondrian and his Studios exhibition as we explore abstraction, colour and geometry in both 2D and 3D. 

Piet Mondrian was one of the first artists to experiment with abstraction when he moved from Holland to Paris in 1911, then London and New York. In each city he moved to he had a studio, which served as a kind of 3D realisation of his gridded, geometric canvases. Mondrian was inspired by architecture and the increasingly built-up landscapes that surrounded his city centre studios.

Taking this theme of abstraction in the real world, participants have been creating gridded viewfinders which can be overlaid onto the windows of Tate Liverpool's Art Dock studio to colour and re-frame the landscape.  Participants are also leaving their colourful strips to be added to an evolving installation in the Family Room. Furthermore, they can experiment with paper manipulation and the art of pop-up as their cuts and folds turn into geometric sculptures and architectural-like models.  Watch this (square!) space for more photos of the Family Room in progress...

 

Paper Trails

I've had a busy week running Artigami at The Hepworth Wakefield: a workshop inspired by Barbara Hepworth's curved, hollow forms and strings, The session is dedicated to constructing and deconstructing the possibilities of paper.

 

We've bean tearing, twisting, folding, punching, pleating, scrunching.... and I have to say I've been blown away by some of the work I've seen. We've had lots of positive comments too, so hopefully we got the balance right between structured activity and free-style paper play!

 

Artigami will run again on September 13th-14th (11am - 4pm) and I'll also be working on creating a new paper workshop which will run at The Hepworth Wakefield in October.

 

Another Dimension

I've just had a fun afternoon in the new Clore Art Studio at Manchester Art Gallery. How time flies! Our installation has been taken down and the space has been re-developed by artist Sarah Bridgland. Sarah exhibited two beautiful artworks in the First Cut exhibition at Manchester Art Gallery in 2012. She has since developed ideas to create a space where people can engage and interact with her process and practice. The work also makes connections to influences within the new neighbouring Sculptural Forms exhibition.

As part of the new installation, plinths of modulated heights are arranged in a grid formation. In the centre of the grid, a table with compartments of different coloured, paper shapes can be taken out by visitors and endlessly placed and composed upon the plinths.

Studio Saturdays invites different artists such as myself to pop in and create an intervention which relates to our own interests and practice. My intervention (pictured above) is mirrored shapes and cameras and I'm particularly interested in how this can alter the way people arrange their compositions and also document them, as the mirror opens up a new world of reflections, symmetry and oppositions. The mirror also provides further opportunities for the imagination as younger visitors place it in their composition as a portal to a mirror-image world. In this world, things may seem alike, although appearances can be deceptive! 

Imagine: Paper Cuts in Black and White - Manchester Art Gallery

 It's catch-up time!

This weekend I worked with families taking inspiration from artist Andy Singleton's beautiful paper-cut icicle, currently suspended in the atrium at Manchester Art Gallery, as part of the 'First Cut' exhibition. Families worked together in the atrium, focusing on shapes, patterns and forms inspired by the space and artwork around them.

The display grew over the weekend to take over the windows of the atrium, creating an interesting way to frame viewpoints overlooking Princess Street.

Links:

http://andysingleton.co.uk/

http://www.manchestergalleries.org/whats-on/exhibitions/index.php?itemID=92

http://www.facebook.com/ManchesterArtGallery

http://www.flickr.com/photos/manchester_city_galleries/collections/72157606686346575/

Just So Festival 2012: Away with the Fairies, The Tent of Surprise

After a long and lovely weekend working at the Just So festival at Rode Hall Parkland Cheshire, I've finally found some time to load up a few pictures.

Hidden in enchanted woodland, 'Away with the Fairies', my Tent of Surprise revealed a paper forest (literally!) growing inside the tent. With baskets filled with surprises to rummage through, families were able to explore objects through all the senses. Torches revealed paper-cut shadows and bugs (both imaginary and real!), pots of perfumes or potions conjured up responses, emotions and memories, children listened out for noises and the feely basket was full of surprises - including a real frog that had accidentally landed in there and gone to sleep! Perhaps it was the fairy queen who had been out casting spells...

Links:

http://www.justsofestival.org.uk/

http://www.justsofestival.org.uk/away-with-the-fairies-at-a-glance/

http://www.facebook.com/justsofestival

 

Playing with Paper: The Hepworth Wakefield

Here are some lovely pictures taken from weekend 2 of my paper workshop at the Hepworth this weekend, working alongside sculptor Liz Pontin:

Artigami! Enjoy!

Links:

http://lizpontin.com/

http://www.hepworthwakefield.org/

Paper Sculptures - The Hepworth Wakefield

Here are some photos taken this weekend at my new paper construction workshop 'Arti-gami' at The Hepworth Wakefield. Sculptor Liz Pontin and I worked together to develop a new workshop which encourages people to play with paper and try out new paper sculpting techniques, drawing inspiration from Barbara Hepworth's sculptures.

Families are invited to build their own interpretations of Hepworth's sculptures and maquettes. They are also invited to play more open-endedly with paper to find different ways to form and manipulate it. Taking the idea of Barbara Hepworth's sculpture garden, families can add their paper sculptures to make the garden grow. They can also explore the shadows of their paper constructions.

Arti-Garmi runs from 11am - 4pm on the following dates this summer: 4th, 5th, 13th - 17th August and 8th, 9th September:

http://www.hepworthwakefield.org/whatson?page=3&month=&year=&category=&audience=

Just So Festival - Rode Hall Parkland, Cheshire - 17th-19th August 2012 (save the date!)

 

Time flies... and I'm starting to gather my ideas and materials to fill a tent full of magical surprises at the Just So Festival this August!

The Just So Festival is a quirky, creative, boutique festival aimed at children, young people and their families. Originally based in Shropshire, it has moved this year to Rode Hall Parkland in Cheshire for a weekend of camping and creativity in the woods. It will be a treat to spend some time doing my creative thing outdoors surrounded by trees, natural light and sunbeams (fingers crossed!)

Just So aims to be more than just a family festival - featuring some of the best UK arts activity. There'll be lots of story-telling, dancing, visual arts, lights, magic and mayhem in the woods!

I will be hiding in a tent 'Away with the Fairies' (I'm already there), creating a world of papery delights - the rest is a secret, so I will keep 'schtum' for now....

For more information about the festival visit the site at: http://www.justsofestival.org.uk/

For a plan of the festival site, please view the map and click on the different areas: http://www.justsofestival.org.uk/2012-programme-2/

I'm very, very excited!