T1-MMT-P2-p1-e2 Joining straight edges with a gap – post 1

Rather than following the precise sequence suggested in the course notes, I’ve started this exercise by thinking of clusters and similarities in joins. My start-the-session sketching was reminding myself of works where the join with a gap is very loose, responding (or not) to gravity, the join itself a major feature.

Colour pencils on A3 cartridge paper

Colour pencils on A3 cartridge paper

All the works drawn are on my pinterest page (link). Clockwise from top left, artists and direct links:

  • Alicia Scardetta Melted (2014, http://ascardetta.com/new-work). I love the exuberant colour and fall of the wrapped wefts, contained within a traditional weaving format.
  • Eva Hesse Metronomic Irregularity I (1966, a href=”https://www.brooklynmuseum.org/eascfa/feminist_art_base/gallery/eva_hesse.php?i=1701″>https://www.brooklynmuseum.org/eascfa/feminist_art_base/gallery/eva_hesse.php?i=1701). The relative sizes of board and gap is wrong. This work defies gravity, with the tangle of lines the result of the nature of the material.
  • Paula do Prado Almas Gemelas/Twin Souls (http://www.pauladoprado.net/twin-souls.html. This is a conceptually based work, considering issues such as identity. While experimenting with materials and techniques I don’t want to lose sight of meaning, here people joined yet individual.
  • Diem Chau Sisters (http://www.diemchau.com/plates24.html). I saw this artist’s work on the OCA pinterest site (https://www.pinterest.com/opencollegearts/textiles/). As well as the conceptual join, this work uses a glued join of organza to ceramic which is very effective. More on Diem Chau’s technique on her blog http://tinyhaus.blogspot.com.au/2010/03/embroidery-faq-part-1.html
  • Michele Elliot hemispheres, drawn to you, still (2011, http://rmitgallery.com/2012/02/10/behind-the-scenes-of-sensorial-loop/). This work accepts – uses – gravity, but with a level of control and order also imposed. It is materials and process led, recreated at each venue of a travelling exhibition.
  • Sample p2-6

    Sample p2-6 In progress

    Sample p2-6 In progress

    My first sample is similar in layout to Hesse’s work, but I decided to push the exuberance with colour. The material being joined is a plastic latchhook canvas, with the joining “threads” plastic drawn with the 3D pen. Both these materials are fairly rigid – one of my sub-thoughts is the mix of rigid and soft materials, and the impact of the combination in a join.

    Sample p2-6 Top view

    Sample p2-6 Top view


    The result has energy and colour. I photographed it flat on the table, but also tried pinning it on the wall and it protruded and defied gravity in a pleasing way.

    Sample p2-6 Detail view

    Sample p2-6 Detail view


    There is too much detail and I don’t know where to look. I’d like to try for a better balance with some control or constraint. Looking back, Hesse’s work has the subtle grid of the boards and the clear divisions of boards and gap providing a structure and sense of order. My grid is effectively invisible against the white background, and simply colouring it probably wouldn’t help – I think it is too coarse and would only become yet more lines.

    I didn’t intend the blobby attachment areas and have thought of a few ways to avoid them, but decided I quite like a bit of solidity or density with all those fine lines.

    The comments above were written when first looking at and photographing the result. The sample had too much information, too much complexity, nowhere to rest the eyes. I found it difficult.

    Sample p2-6 Side view

    Sample p2-6 Side view

    A few hours later, writing this post, I see it differently. Pottering around the workroom the blobby attachment areas become the focus, with the lines above a lacework that changes in colour and shape as I move around. Static, there is too much and I can see nothing. Moving around, the base provides stability and interest with a haze of colour constantly shifting above. The result is bright, cheerful, lively, and the colour haze fascinating. I would like to find ways to reproduce that on different scales, and in a more permanent way. Unfortunately the actual join is light and brittle, and I’m sure with a sharp pull I could separated the two parts.

    Sample p2-7
    Wanting to make a feature of gravity, next I made three bundles of rayon machine embroidery threads, each bundle a different length. I used them together with thumbtacks to join two pieces of acrylic felt acoustic panel – a soft join between two rigid materials.

    Sample p2-7a Straight join

    Sample p2-7a Straight join


    A simple straight join shows the thread more lively than I anticipated.

    Sample p2-7b Lower panel suspended

    Sample p2-7b Lower panel suspended


    The lower panel is supported only by the threads.

    Sample p2-7c angles panels

    Sample p2-7c angles panels


    Angled panels and wider spacing looks like an ineffective trouser closing.

    Sample p2-7c Detail

    Sample p2-7c Detail


    On closer look I am beginning to appreciate the liveliness of the threads.

    Sample p2-7d Another uneven join

    Sample p2-7d Another uneven join


    Another uneven join looks like a bizarre clown smile in the cropped photo. The three bundles are much more integrated here, creating a field of movement.

    Sample p2-7e Intertwined

    Sample p2-7e Intertwined


    Some interaction, with the bundles crossing. It loses the individuality of the threads, getting more the smooth stream that I envisaged at the beginning. I like the geometry that’s beginning to appear.

    Sample p2-7f Offset

    Sample p2-7f Offset


    Offset. The threads create lovely fluid shapes.

    Sample p2-7g Plait - showing dimensionality

    Sample p2-7g Plait – showing dimensionality


    This started as a plait. The photograph was taken at an angle to capture the dimensional effect that is appearing.

    There are lots of possibilities still to be explored here. I would like to try at a larger scale – number of threads, number of bundles, possibly size of thread (20/2 silk could make a beautiful show).

    T1-MMT-P2-p1-e2 Joining straight edges with a gap – post 1
    Textiles 1 – Mixed Media for Textiles
    Part 2: Joining and wrapping
    Project 1: Joining
    Exercise 2: Joining straight edges with a gap

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