28 June 2008

Glass and architecture

A new gallery specialising in architecture and art has just opened round the corner from where I live. Very interesting. A nice happy private view at which 2 chaps I already knew were exhibiting and others whose work I had seen but didn't know. I hope the gallery is a success: it's great to have something like this on one's doorstep.

27 June 2008

Painting and drawing

I am still experimenting with 'painting' with glass. But am I getting anywhere with this? I don't think I am. Three more in a kiln as we 'speak' but I'm told only one of them has survived intact. I suppose that must mean the other two have broken. I don't think I've got the right temperament for all these kiln failures. Carried on with the life classes while the pieces were in the kiln. Do you need to be able to draw to paint in glass? I think, yes. This drawing - and all my other ones - got thrown away by locker-room clearer-outers, along with some expensive kiln paper. I understand how this happened -- they need to clear the decks -- but it felt like a metaphor for how things are for me at the moment.

26 June 2008

Art machine

This was produced on an art machine by some schoolboys using 'shoot-the-paint' guns at a computer screen and generating a range of patterns - possibly based on fractals. This one looks like a poppy. I thought it was good amunition for the art and chance theories I am developing for my final bit of academic writing for the end of my MA.

22 June 2008

Glass and science

Had a very interesting time at the Herstmonceux Science Park where there were distortion lenses, refracting mirrors and prisms as well as much else. V interesting - and not just because of the different uses of glass. Bottom left is one of the earliest (huge) refracting telescope mirrors - only a tiny bit of miror silvering left on its face - cast from pyrex at Corning in 1911 and a ton of ground glass removed from its face to create the lens curve. Stephen is planning to make a 6" version. Then on to Glyndebourne with a fabulous picnic.

16 June 2008

Artists' talks at ZeST

I called the talk I gave 'Serendipity and happy accident', which is my theme song at the moment. I said how making glass jewellery for this show came about by a series of happy accidents. Also said how the four bowls on display came about, and -- now I am doubting myself here, but it was corroborated later -- the owner said of the top one that he had been in glass a long time and this was one of the most beautiful, painterly bowls he had ever seen. If only someone else would think that enought to buy it! Although I really want to keep it myself, the affirmation of a stranger stumping up real money would mean such a lot.
This one has lots of potential for optical effects. Can't wait to try this again, but where and how?

12 June 2008

Dem bones

There are some MA life drawing classes for the next 5 weeks -- hurrah for whoever organised that! When I say 'life', that's a bit of a misnomer for this one - but very useful for me to spend a day looking closely at bones. What hard work, though - I kept losing count of vertebrae. Left femur isn't long enough; right too long - it's suddenly obvious with the drawing and the 'model' side-by-side. Very useful exercise and some good feedback at the end of the session.

06 June 2008

Coutts Guide

In today's Evening Standard, the Coutts London Jewellery Week Guide dropped out and here's the 'Contemporary Trail' spread, with my image yet again largest on the page. It really is odd the way this picture is getting taken up. I wish I understood how it happens. Of course, it is rather nice. And so serendipitous the way it all came about. I actually took off the necklace I was wearing at a PV so the gallerista could photograph it. I think it's her photograph the press likes, not the piece. And it's useful if you want to have a black page.

05 June 2008

Tosca's flowers

Some people will do anything to make glass relevent to whatever they do. I was going to juxtapose these flowers - made of glass (by the Blaschkas) with a picture of Tosca's flowers from Act 1 last night - which I had been given to take home, but left behind at the Royal Opera House. I had the most exciting night for just the longest time. I sat back stage and saw the whole opera from the wings. I also had my debut at the Garden - I played the sheep's bells in Act 3. Yes, I did. Such huge fun. Expertly stage-managed (me as well as the whole performance) by my lovely daughter.

Actually, there is a little MA glass connection. An opera idea seems to be flowering.

04 June 2008

Bolsover Street presentation

I gave a presentation to the visioning team responsible for the interior of the new outpatients wing in Bolsover Street and there was fulsome enthusiasm for this design -- I took in 3 samples to show more graphically what it would be like, and was fortunate in that there was perfect lighting to demonstrate how the rondels would throw coloured shadows onto the wall behind. The head honcho of the architectural firm was called in to see, and he too was effusive. Original, he said. There's many a slip, and all that, but I feel this is getting close to becoming a real commission. The NHS Trustees are onside, so the final push now is to tighten it all up in order to get the stamp of approval. If it could all dovetail into my MA final project, that would be the icing on the cake.