Thursday, February 16, 2012

Artist Spotlight: Lyndi Sales

A while back I stumbled upon the work of South African artist Lyndi Sales, while doing research on paper-cut work for my Exploding Lace installation. As you can see why, I was immediately drawn to the intricacy and meticulousness of her thought provoking, multi-dimensional cut-works in paper, sharing a similar sensibility to the way that I approach working and my own materials and processes. Here is a bit of info about Lyndi, I highly recommend checking out her website for more images of her incredible and extensive body of work.

Lyndi Sales is an artist based in Cape Town, South Africa. For the past couple of years, she has been working on a series of installations and artworks that seek to investigate the circumstances surrounding the controversial Helderberg plane crash. These constructions, made of intricately cut, pinned paper and rubber often shed light on the fragile nature of our existence, temporality and how chance plays a role in our lives.

"All the works I created (below) are a part of the airline crash series. The Helderberg crash happened 20 years ago during the Apartheid era and remains unresolved and is still a controversial issue today in South Africa. At the time of the crash there were political sanctions against our country, there was an arms embargo that prohibited SA from importing any arms or substances used in warfare into the country. It is believed that SA authorities were importing highly flammable substances on passenger Boeings as a result of the embargo. Upon leaving Taipei, turbulence caused by a storm enabled the Ammonia petro chlorate to self ignite causing a fatal fire on board, leading the plane to crash a few hours later. Subsequently there have been a number of cover-ups to hide information such as the black box recordings, paperwork etc."
The work In Transit illustrates many themes surrounding the Helderberg crash including the area of the ocean floor where the wreckage landed. "An image of seaweed was cut into the map and then the negative pieces were re-pinned and arranged to form a contour of the ocean floor. The seaweed is symbolic of bronchial branches (lungs and breath) and suggests that the ocean (and crash site) is alive with the breath of those who died as well as alive with the mystery of what went down."

Flight Path Vortex

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

The Matter Factory

What a great lecture last night! I really enjoyed listening to Andy Brayman's talk, describing his process and the way he looks at data as a form of material for working with.
A couple of the works in the presentation that really stood out to me included his series of cups printed with gold lustre. Each cup is painted with 23k gold or platinum, making use of the material - which is commonly known for its ability to diminish over time with washing and use. Through use and regular wear and tear, the lustrous surface slowly chips away to reveal hidden messages beneath.

I also enjoyed looking at his collaboration with ceramic artist Ayumi Horie, an installation made up of a series of large individual tiles and platters. The installation was made in celebration of Greenwich House Pottery's Centennial and inspired by the ecology of Greenwich Village in 1609, the year Henry Hudson first 'discovered' Manhattan. 
The project consists of 86 porcelain tiles, each tile represents a city block and Washington Square Park, encompassing 165 sq acres of Greenwich Village. The tiles are printed in cobalt with a series of oversize decals, opalescent white glaze and silver lustre; outlining a map that illustrates the twelve different ecosystems and twenty-six different animals that lived in the area in 1609. This project acts to raise ecological awareness and can currently be seen in the office of Greenwich House Pottery, open to the public.

Another intriguing project involves what Brayman calls a “tornado machine.” taking brick and cinder block fragments from the town of Greensburg, Kansas, destroyed in 2007 by a tornado, and putting them in a simple centrifuge machine that turns things to dust “using only spinning air in a metal cone.” He is using the dust made from these construction fragments turning them into glazes for pieces that will ultimately go back to Greensburg.

Greensburg, Kansas after the tornado.

Image - bricks and rubble, before being broken down in the 'tornado machine'

An example of a family of glazes that can be made from the particles re-purposed from the rubble. 
neat stuff!

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

OCC Craft Talk: Andy Brayman

Tonight OCAD will be hosting a free Craft Talk by ceramic artist Andy Brayman, Here is a little more information about the talk and a video of his process:

Pragmatism and Decadence through Applied Research


Artworks by Andy Brayman and the Matter Factory

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

OCAD University, 100 McCaul St., Toronto.
Room 230 (second floor)
6:30 - 7:30 pm

Free to attend!
Brayman will describe his working process and discuss the resulting objects, which are born through a unique mixture of science and art. Specifically, his research into robotic fabrication and porcelain production will be presented.
"My current work comes from research into new technologies coupled with my long-standing interest in utility. While the forms are largely defined by conventions of function, the specifics of these forms and their surfaces are born from digital tools: software and hardware."
Andy Brayman holds a BA in sociology and a BFA in ceramics from the University of Kansas (1996) and an MFA in ceramics from Alfred University (1998). His work is a combination of traditional craft, industrial processes, and contemporary art strategies. At their best, his pots demonstrate an object’s potential to be both beautiful and cerebral. In 2005, Andy founded The Matter Factory in Kansas City. It is part artist studio, part laboratory, and part factory. In addition to producing objects of his design, the company contains a collaborative element. Guest designers and artists are invited to develop objects for production, which might otherwise have trouble finding an eager manufacturer.

GH and Firefly - Spraying Color from andy brayman on Vimeo.

Friday, February 3, 2012

Exploding Lace View

My installation Exploding lace view is now currently up in the exhibition LOOKout at Harbourfront Centre. The show will be on until April 15th, if you are interested in checking it out!
I managed to talk my wonderful boyfriend into taking some photos for me during the opening, and will be photographing the rest of the work in the gallery shortly to post about. Here is a brief artist statement and some images from the installation.

Exploding Lace View

Manipulating photographs of her own textile work, Aston expands on these predetermined patterns. By altering line, shape, volume, repetition and scale she deconstructs these formal patterns in unexpected ways and creates three-dimensional, large-scale works.

Installation in progress... painters tape an nails

detailed shot

talking about the work

enjoying the cast shadows

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

TIDF & DO West Design

Saturday afternoon turned out to be a jam packed day as I wandered across the blustering city to the various design events, lectures and openings that TIDF had to offer.
Beginning at Harbourfront Centre with the Innovators and Ideas Lecture Series, I was introduced to the work of former artist-in-residence and incredibly talented jeweler Karen Konzuk. Made up of stainless steel and concrete, her architecture-inspired jewelery is currently on display at Harbourfront in the southernmost vitrines in an exhibition entitled Aggregate. more on kon zuk later...

January is traditionally the time of year when Harbourfront Centre focuses on contemporary craft, with exhibitions - such as the current craft biennial LOOKout, and the Viva Voce lectures put on by senior craft artists in residence. This years speakers included my studio mate Shuyu Lu as well as Clayton Haigh, Deborah Freeman and Adriana McNeeley.
Year after year, I have found this lecture series to be one of the most inspiring and introspective talks presented by Harbourfront. I love hearing all the stories that have lead to the making of such inspired careers and bodies work.


After Harbourfront Centre, I headed on down to Dundas st. to pop by the public opening reception for Radiant Dark: the Devil is in the Details, to take some pics and get a closer look at some of the work I had missed from before. Here are a couple images from the show:

Evan Bare - Toffel (slipper chair)

Yvonne Ip - And miles to go before i sleep (hall runner)
wet felted, by a process of pacing back and forth across the wool.

Jen Kneulman being inquisitive

Our Malbec table - made of concrete and walnut, acid etched with red wine...

Annie Tung & Brad Turner - Shadow (Chandalier)


Along the drift further down Dundas st. we stopped to take a picture at Saving Grace with Amanda McCavour's spirograph installation, before hitting up capacity:

Capacity @ Bev Hisey's studio

Unfortunately, I only got a chance to peek at some of the work and snap a couple quick shots while I was juggling my broken backpack, camera and umbrella while shoulder to shoulder with people in the crowd! Here are a couple pics from the show:

I really love the lines in this smocked canopy by Maiwenn Castellan:

Mountain of cushions installation by Bev Hisey (detail shot):

Bettie Cott & Lauren Reed's - Modern Hangups


Finally ended up at the Associates exhibition at the new Cooper Cole Gallery, to see some late night installations and goings on.

I really loved these lamps reminiscent of necklace pendants:

Felt topographies: