To see more art, that is the plan – Part I

I have been a bit rubbish at getting myself into gear to see as many exhibitions as I would have like in the last year. I pretty much always enjoy it when I do, it’s just making the time. It’s something that makes me happy, so I will do more of it. There is nothing like seeing a piece of art that you really relate to. There are obviously times where you see things that aren’t your cup of tea but I think that reminds you how great the things you like, really are. I have seen two exhibitions recently that I have thoroughly enjoyed. Here is the first:

Sarah Browne – How to Use Fool’s Gold, Ikon Gallery Birmingham

I haven’t written about art for a long time however I found the exhibition to be exciting and thought provoking. It was also extremely aesthetic and spoke a language me and my family understood. It spoke about people, industry and the obselete technology. I think my favourite piece was ‘Common Knowlege’, wild flowers pressed in different books that were written about ‘traditional feminine craft and an intellectual enquiry into amateurism, economics and mass cultural production’. For example ‘May 2010: Bluebells in Glenn Adamson’s Thinking Through Craft, 2009.’ I thought they were beautiful and I loved the relationship with what they were pressed in.

In the book ‘How to Use Fool’s Gold’ I spied the below piece of work called ‘The Gift’ which wasn’t in the exhibition but it is right up my street! The sofa’s were sourced by the artist and then re-upholstered using patterns created out of Irish potato bags and articles from the Irish constitution about the home. They were then given away, as gifts to various members of the Irish community (Including a man living in a council flat who had previously been homeless). They were asked in exchange, to document the sofa in their home. I wonder if the sofa became a talking point for their guests, and was treated as an art object and looked after with extra care. Is it now part of their furniture, a member of their family or prehaps living with a new owner? Could it be that it got tired and was discarded alongside it’s DFS equivalents?  The reappropriation of an object like the sofa is fascinating and these sofa’s have an extra couple of chapters to their story.

Gifts Galore

The week before last I was given so many weird and wonderful gifts. Thank you Phil (Water bottle and envelope dobber), Grandma (homemade bear and necklace) and Stevie (Dee Dee’s paper clips, embroidery apparatus and treasury tags).


This weekend I stayed at my friend Laura’s house in London (It was so lovely!). I was sat on her wonderfully comfortable sofa when out of the corner of my eye I saw on the book shelf the words ‘100 chairs’. I leapt up and almost jumped for joy as I saw it was the book ‘100 Chairs in 100 Days in 10 Ways’ I had previously discovered last week. What an amazingly great coincidence! I sat and perused it with a lovely cup of tea. Great end to a great weekend!

Breakfast time

I have been working on a new piece based on the most important meal of the day, breakfast. I decided to start by hollowing two eggs which is a lot harder than it sounds. A bit like blowing up a balloon that just wont budge. I then wrapped string around the first one for the length it takes to cook a hard boiled egg and the second for a soft boiled egg. And last but not least, you can’t have a breakfast without a cup of tea!

I would really like to exhibit this work on a white shelf at the height of a kitchen work surface.

A wall of vinyl

I had a really good time at the opening of Exit Through the Record Shop! There were so many different styles of record. As you walked in you were faced with a wall of vinyl and I had a great time nosing around. I think I walked round at least four times and each time spotted something new to look at. They were all for sale and we bought one for the now Mr and Mrs Young for a wedding gift. It had a painting of a Mexican wrestler on it, which is a whole different story.

This was amazing, made with many records and screws!

There was also this beautiful cassette light!

One of my pieces ‘The Perfect Pop Song’ was mounted on the wall and the other, ‘The Average Record’ was displayed with other sculptural objects. I really enjoyed exhibiting again and it was good to have a theme to work towards.

Keyboard catastrophe

What kind of musical magic was played on this keyboard before its unfortunate demise? I like to think there was a Ross from Friends type character who played it to death to find their ‘musical gift’.

String wrapped objects

I am really looking forward to wrapping objects in string for a length of time that relates to their use/purpose! I have wrapped this hollow egg (which was inspired by my Mum Ali and decorated Easter eggs) for the amount of time it takes to boil a soft boiled egg.

Coming soon, the perfect pop song, a bus journey and a cup of tea!

A clock without hands

At Nottingham train station they have a clock with no hands. I thought this was a particularly peculiar place to have such an object as most of the people there would be waiting for a time to arrive. The clock would never provide the time and so people could just keep on waiting. (If by a freak occurrence no-one there owned watches or mobile phones!)

A clock without arms is surely just a circle or is it a symbol for the lack of time we feel we have, or don’t have. I liked it. It made me feel calm. Time wasn’t flying by. I was departing and had no-one to meet, so time was washing over me. I think more clocks should just be circles. It would make for a less pressured environment.

In a past office job of mine there used to be two clocks at either end of a corridor, both stopped still. One stated home time and the other stated lunch time. It was cruel, as my mind would always register them even though I knew they were broken and wrong. This corridor showed the time you wanted it to be but it was only right twice a day. On reflection I should have made them handless.

Discarded electrical goods

I think there is something sad about seeing electrical goods outside in the cold, wet weather. Any life left in them is slowly being weathered away. I think it’s fair to say that the chances are that the items are already broken, past it, has beens, but surely there is something they could be used for? Katie and I have had many a conversation about this and I think there is part of us that just wants to give them more life and to recognise their worth.

TV Graveyard

A Hoover and a DVD player

Baked Goat's

Went to Ripple in Sherwood with some friend and saw ‘Baked Goat’s’ on the receipt. Hilarious!