Monday, May 30, 2011

Ai Weiwei Circle of Animals.

I got to see Ai Weiwei's Circle of Animals Zodiac Heads, his new sculptural installation at Somerset House, last week.
It is an installation of 12 bronze sculptures of animal heads, the animals being the traditional animals of the Chinese Zodiac including, dragon, horse, monkey and rabbit. Ai Weiwei based his sculptures on traditional Chinese designs and they are quite striking in the courtyard of Somerset House.

It is a political shame that Ai Weiwei has been arrested and is in custody in China now, for apparent tax evasion. He has been an outspoken critic of China's regime for many years, it is testimony to the power of the arts I suppose that artists like Ai Weiwei are targeted by their country in an attempt to silence their views.
I hope international pressure is brought to bear more and more strongly on the Chinese for the release of Ai Weiwei.

The regular fountains are on again for the summer, with their sequence of rising and falling jets, I couldn't quite make up my mind whether they enhanced or detracted from the installation. I did enjoy taking a few photos of them through the water though.

Saturday, May 07, 2011

E17 Designers Market this week.

I have been busy getting work ready for the E17 Designers market on this Friday at the Asian Centre, 18a Orford road, E17 9LN May 13th 7-10pm. link to site and more info here The craft markets have a really good range of products and do showcase what skilled designers we have in the area. There is also live music, wine and soft drinks and goody bags to be won, so a good evening out if you can make it
E17 Designers has a new website with more information about the designers here
I am taking my new individual collages as cards, I'm enjoying collecting all the material and making up the compositions, though the sorting of material for easy use is a bit daunting.

I'm also working on some larger collages as well, some of which will have more political comment in them
Part of my interest in collage has come from the political Agit Prop work from the 1930's onwards.
Today artist Peter Kennard carries on the tradition. Good article here about his work and his own website here.
Photographers working with a collage element also interest me, such as the recent work by John Stezaker at the Whitechapel gallery link to his work here. I have started a few photographic collage pieces over the years but haven't made up a body of work with them yet. I like both the digital and more hand made aspects of collage but my photoshop skills are not great at the moment.