Tuesday, 17 September 2013

First finished piece!

 I'm so happy to say that I've now finished one canvas, and I am so pleased with how it has turned out. It has been titled "Mud", for obvious reasons!
Embroidering the canvas last night was a messy job, due to the amount of dirt of the surface, but it was absolutely worthwhile. The weathering is so clear here, and I'm still amazed by how quickly it happened. This is exactly the kind of result I wanted all along, so I'm very satisfied with this piece. In Iceland I've been working on a smaller scale than usual, due to time constraints, and I think this has also helped to speed up the process.
I love that there is balance between areas that are built up and intense, and areas such as the forehead that are less blemished, I think that really works in this piece. I also love that the dampness of the environment has caused to chalk to spread and drip in some places, that wasn't a result I was expecting but I think it works in contrast with the bolder aspects of the work.
 This piece has really confirmed for me that bringing my practice out here for a time was the best decision, I've accomplished what was not possible in London. When I originally conceived this idea, about a year ago, this was the kind of effect I was imagining and hoping for. I had to go a lot further than I expected to manage this, but I'm really satisfied now.
However, unfortunately yesterday I found that the piece in the rockpool has been washed away. This really doesn't surprise me, as in the past few days the sea has been very choppy, the waves have been even more violent than they were last week. with the waves being so big I would probably have drowned if I'd gone down to check the painting over the weekend.
It's a shame, but an occupational hazard if I choose to work in this way. I'm glad that I was at least able to document the weathering process with images and film, even though there is no work at the end of it. It has highlighted that I perhaps need to be even more
careful when it comes to securing the works, so  I'm keeping a very close eye on the piece that is still outside.
I am considering bringing it inside today, as it is already scratched, and this morning I had to climb along the rocks to retrieve it, as the winds last night had blown it further down the cliffs, along with the rock it is tied to. I obviously knew that the weather conditions would be more dramatic here, but I didn't understand just how extreme it could be. It's completely unpredictable, and whilst that it great for the weathering process I'm having to work a lot harder just to make sure that I do actually have some pieces left!
Even if the remaining works don't go to plan I'm so happy with this painting, and will be exhibiting it in London next month for sure. Yesterday I also placed a couple more paper experiments outside, and I'm also planning to try out a piece on wood, to see if and how this differs from weathering canvas. I'm so excited about the possibilities here!

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