A new semester began at FHSU this past Monday and I returned to the studio to resurrect the play set and prepare it for firing. In spite of 6 weeks dry time and constant careful attention it cracked in several places. Part of the reason for this was the massive walls of the “rock” body vs the very delicate interior of the space. I used my favorite recipe for fire able fixes: 200 clay slip from summit brick (its primarily fire clay with lots of grog) Karo syrup and toilet paper. This gets me great consistent results in stoneware clays with little follow up needed.
This piece is intended to serve as a prop in my next video project to be installed on You Tube. As the project has taken its sweet time to be ready to fire It has allowed the concept for the work to evolve. While I still intend to base the production of the video off toy commercials of the 80’s, I have increasingly wanted to say something real about work and employment based on my experience dealing with the twists and turns of my job over the last year. The goal for this piece is to make a video and an object that on first glance is light and funny, but carries the human content and meaning that I need my work to contain. Stay tuned, it goes in the kiln this morning.
My overall goals for the semester are to continue to search for the particular direction I want my thesis show to take. I am confident video will be a strong component of the body of work and that the content will pull from the deepest artistic past in the ephemeral media of the present. How that will look however has yet to be seen.
This semester art history will play a large part of that development. Over the summer I took a painting class with Leland Powers, the chair of the art department at FHSU. The research and paintings from the class became one of my most compelling projects yet in the grad school experience. Here you see pictured 10 prehistoric art images, ranging in age from aprox. 38,000 years old to 5,000 years. They are painted on 8″ x 8″ canvas’. I am taking this interest into a readings class where I will focus on some of the older pieces coming from the Gravettian period in europe from 24,000 to 22,000 bce. I am enthusiastic to see where this research leads my work