INITIAL IDEAS – ROOM 131 EXHIBITION

THE EXHIBITION

“Initial Ideas” was the third exhibition based in a home environment that I have been a part of. However, it was also shown online and this is the first time ROOM 131 have done this. Using the Facebook events page we had set up for the physical event on the 20th February; we also hosted the online side of the exhibition. The main appeal for this was for those who were unable to make it or lived further afield and could not attend the exhibition in person.

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For the future, I’d like to find a different site for hosting the online side of the exhibition. I feel it’s an important part of the exhibition, especially within today’s society. I also feel it’s time to try out different places for exhibiting. At first, exhibiting in a home was a challenge because it was new, but now I feel I’m becoming too comfortable with it and believe it is time to push the boundaries more. So lots of new ideas to develop into the next exhibition.

THE WORK

I found it useful to get all my recent work together and to look at how it all relates to each other as a whole. It had been a while since I had done an exhibition that involved more than two or three pieces of work (the ROOM 131 exhibition at the bear, September 2014) so I had 5 months worth of ideas and work to sort through in an attempt to organise it into something that made sense to myself as well as to the visitors.

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There were studies from before I made paintings, prints that had developed into paintings and prints that had developed from paintings, in the end they all worked well together, having initial sketches and ideas along side more developed pieces allowed for a more in-depth story to be told within the work and hopefully a greater understanding. This exhibition is the first one that I have felt I’ve had a body of work that I can continue to develop and continue to show together.

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MARLENE DUMAS @ THE TATE MODERN

I first became really interested in the works of Marlene Dumas when studying for my dissertation. I had found myself looking at quite obviously, idealised images of children however Dumas was expressing broader opinions on the subject. Within her works there was an element of truth, of reality … as well as those ‘sweet moments’.

From this research, I had developed the quote:

A Child Has The Ability To Do Evil, They Are A Lifetime Commitment & Demand A Lot Of Time & A Lot Of Work. It’s Not All Sunshine & Rainbows…

Which I have considered in the making and developing of my recent works.

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Both of the above paintings were created working from the same photograph of her young daughter sleeping. “You change the colour of something and everything changes (especially if you’re a painter).” Dumas

In the same room as the two paintings above was this huge painting of the artists Daughter, called ‘The Painter’

Painting as a practice of pleasure,

And the painting as an object of pleasure,

Her Hands dripped into paint, she does not need

a brush – she uses her hands to paint.

A purely physical pleasure of touch and gesture.

The body pursues its own ideas.

Historically painting was seen as female but, the

males were the painters, and the females the models.

Now the female (the daughter) takes the main role.

She paints herself.

The model becomes the artist. She creates herself.

She is not there to please you. She pleases herself.

The question is note ‘Who is she,’ but ‘Who are you?’

- Marlene Dumas, ‘The Artist as a Painter’ 2007

The Painter

“The young child is so sensual and gentle at times that it scares me. My daughter shows me her body without posing to please. She shows me the cruelty and magic of innocence.”

- Marlene Dumas, 1994

“She shows me the cruelty and magic of innocence” leads interestingly to the piece ‘Give the people what they want’ 1992, which is shown on the right of these two pieces.

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Here, Dumas speaks about representation.

There’s a crisis with regard to representation.

They are looking for meaning as if it was a thing

as if it was a girl, required to take her panties off.

as if she would want to do so, as soon as 

the true interpreter comes along. 

As if there was something to take off.

- Marlene Dumas, ‘The Artwork as Misunderstanding’ 1992

OUR FIRST ONLINE EXHIBITION

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VISIT OUR NEXT EXHIBITION FROM THE COMFORT OF YOUR OWN HOME.

We are very excited to announce our FIRST EVER online exhibition.
On Friday 20th of February, between 6pm and 10pm, we will be LIVE on THIS EVENTS PAGE. We will be posting updates and descriptions about our most recent works and we will be available to interact and answer any of your questions.

Influenced by the likes of Tom O’dell & Imagine Dragons who have hosted online acoustic sessions for their audiences, we have decided to do something very similar for our next exhibition.
With followers from all around the world it can make it very hard to put on an exhibition and have it reach those of you who have shown a real interest in what we are doing. We hope by doing an exhibition this way it will give you the chance to see our work and tell us what you really think about it.

You will be able to tell us that you like a piece by simply hitting the like button from the comfort of your own sofa, at home … also, if you don’t like a piece, then comment and tell us why.

THE EXHIBITION WILL BE OPEN FOR THE PUBLIC TO VISIT, so if you find yourself south of the river on Friday 20th February then make sure you come and say hello. Just look out for the sign posts around Tooting Broadway Tube Station for directions to the venue.

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A LITTLE UPDATE

Following Florence’s Post Yesterday On The ROOM 131 Website, I’m Going To Give You A Brief Update On Where I Am With My Work In Preparation For Our First ONLINE Exhibition On Friday 20th February.

A Child Has The Ability To Do Evil, They Are A Lifetime Commitment & Demand A Lot Of Time & A Lot Of Work. It’s Not All Sunshine & Rainbows…

The research I was doing for my dissertation led me to look at images of children throughout my family history. All the drawings I did were completed on A4 tracing paper and were small, keepsake like portraits to avoid any subjectivity of the children and for representing the idyllic qualities often shown within childhood portraiture.

Doreen (Kendall) McCrorie Print

However, I was also developing a small experimental piece where I heavily diluted the oil paints with linseed oil to see how the oil would change the piece over time. Painting was something I had always loved but hadn’t had chance to do for about 3 years.

I continued the same technique with a larger piece that was made for an exhibition in Brick Lane. This time I completed the painting from images of birth photography. After previously looking at the idealised image of children within my dissertation and the drawings, I wanted to get a representation of the reality across within this piece, showing that a child is not a cute ‘pamper baby’ there is a lot of work involved and they’re a lifetime commitment. This physical commitment begins from birth; therefore I chose to portray the baby’s first, of many, cries.

This painting was shown with the two, smaller sentimental pieces either side of it.

The Cult House, September 2014

For my most recent painting I completed a few initial sketches.

Reducing existing images down to pencil has been extremely important to me for a while and is one thing I’d always want to keep present within my work. Originally an oil painting, a pastel work and a quick sketch; I created them all in pencil so they can be looked at for their subject and not for their media or place in the history of art.

There are 386 years between the portrait by Reni and the painting I’m working on, there are still many similarities that can be pulled out from these portraits and this is what interests me most.

When the child reaches for its mother this initiates a response from the mother where she reaches to support and take hold of her child. They depict a circular connection, an eternal, everlasting connection. Direct eye contact is another important aspect of these portraits; the sitters are turned away from the viewer with their focus dedicated purely to the child.


                           Reni    Mary Cassat    Starbucks

WHO ARE YOU…?

I spent my New Years Day watching the GRAYSON PERRY series on Channel 4. It was done as a collaborative project with the National Portrait Gallery.

It left me really thinking about what it means to make a portrait of someone. Through each of the three episodes I found that Grayson Perry would come out with things that I couldn’t help but relate to. Creating a portrait of someone isn’t purely about recreating their image, it’s about searching for a part of their identity. A portrait can be a way of celebrating someone, whether it’s a wedding, a birth or a depiction of someone who’s well known within the general public. It can also bring out the Psychologist within the Artist, becoming a detective and wanting to learn more about your subject.

Our identity is something that many of us find hard to explain, but each of us will hold something that we can pull out and say “this is a big part of me, this is how I would help define who I am”

As I began thinking about how all this relates to my own work I actually found myself going backwards and looking at the work I had previously created. Identity has always been a huge part of my work, whether I had noticed it or not. I’ve often drawn, photographed or painted those who I feel have a story to tell. There’s David Bowie with all his different personas, Jared Leto who’s formed an almost Cult like, activist fan base around both his acting and music & there’s Peaches Geldof, who’s portrait I’ve posted below.

Within Peaches’ portrait I had tried to represent her family identity. The images in the background are of her family (her partner and two sons) as well as images of her with her parents, all cut ups from newspapers talking of her life in the week of her death. These images are collaged behind one of the most iconic photographs of Peaches when she was just 3 years old, drawn on delicate tracing paper, helping to reveal her past and the accusations towards her death that were, and still are, held against her.

This is something I’m going to continue to explore, an area that I feel has no limitations & can result in almost anything.

EXHIBITION @ THE CULT HOUSE (BRICK LANE)

CULTTT HOUSECUCOME ALONG TO THE CULT HOUSE POP UP SHOW THIS WEEKEND!

KATE BRITTAIN AND FLO THOMAS WILL BE EXHIBITING, TO FIND OUT MORE VISIT THE CULT HOUSE FACEBOOK PAGE …https://www.facebook.com/theculthouse.co.uk …. OR WEBSITE….http://theculthouse.co.uk/

MOTHERHOOD

I’m A 21 Year Old Female & I Would Be Lying If I Said I Hadn’t Thought About The Day That I Will Become A Mother. I’m Aware It’s Not For Everyone, But Children Are Something That Have Fascinated Me For A Long Time Now, Not Only With The Relationship Between The Mother & Child, But The Psychological Development Of A Child & The History Of Their Role Within Society.

However, Something I’ve Come To Notice Recently Is How Everyone Else Around Me Seems To Think That They Know Better Than I Do About When I Should Be Ready To Have A Child. I Find This Quite A Interesting Concept, When People Are Talking To Me About Motherhood They’re TELLING Me What The Right Thing To Do Is In Their OPINION, Of Course. They’re Not Offering Me Advice They’re Presuming Their OPINION To Be FACT With Little, If Any, Consideration For My Own Opinion…

Below Is A Few Of The Comments People Have Said To Me In The Past When I’ve Mentioned Motherhood To Them, I Was Shocked That As I Wrote One Down It Triggered The Memory Of Another. A Lot Of The Comments Have A Negative Outlook On The Topic & People Bring My Future Plans Into The Present Tense Very Quickly.

“Don’t Be Stupid!”

“You Wouldn’t Keep It, Would You?”

“Now Just Isn’t The Right Time!!” (Is It Ever The Right Time?)

“Not Yet.”

“It’ll Ruin Your Future.”

“Really?”

“What About Your Education?”

“You Don’t Want Children, Do You?”

“You Couldn’t Have A Child Whilst Being Here.”

“How Would You Fund It?”

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The Mother & Child That’s Loved By The World