Sunday 31 January 2016

After Eden - Unquiet Dreams

Work made for Sculpture Network Brunch 2016
Theme - Nature as Material for Art
Host Susan Wiliams MRBS

Carrier - a wheelbarrow

After Eden - Unquiet Dreams
Carole Miles

We lie in an uneasy embrace with nature, 

our relationship is thorny or balance precarious.

Coupled yet separate

Together yet apart

Textile wrapping, rose thorns, flurecent acrylic sheet.

Copper fabrication - Michael Miles

Wednesday 27 January 2016

The Last of Autumn

After sewing the dry oak leaf bowl for the Miles and Dacombe Flavour Exchange walk intervention in Birmingham I have been collecting other dry leaves without a clear idea of what i might do with them. 

Whilst in Paris last August I noticed how dry the city was, the fountains were still, the leaves seemed to have fallen very early. I collected some large grey green leaves and left them to dry in my shed.

In September, whilst exploring Totness I collected in a church a larger number of leaves, delighted and intrigued by the vast choice of colours, flame red, green/red, grey/green, toasty brown, gold, ochre, some already crispy, others softy and supple. I wondered how long they would retain their colour. 

So far my collecting had given me leaves of a similar type - the theme continued as i tryed to collect some of the tiny deep red Acer leaves from my garden - they crisped and crumpled away to practically nothing. However, whilst working in Northampton there were heaps of a different leaf shape (you can see how I am now dodging naming the exact trees, my leaf identification skills are pretty poor). These leaves were string, flat, rounded and came in a good range of colours, so I scooped up a bagful and took them home, still not really knowing why.

I had a thought about adding lights and putting them inside a glass dome, but during my kitchen studio antics for the NYB16 "Nature as a material for art" I broke the dome and decided that whole idea was pretty clichéd, so left that. As I am still trying to make things from things I already have rather than accumulate more things I cannot store I decided to repurpose the stands that had been used in a Brampton Valley intervention. I found some copper wire and decided that instead of sewing another bowl or embellishing a garment (done, done, done) I though I would use the aspects that made them hard to sew together - their dryness and the long, tough yet elegant stems.

I wanted to try an capture that sense of falling
I wanted to enjoy the colours,

the textures and the fragility of the leaves.

wrapped with wire, embraced by wire,
reflected in acrylic and supported on plum wood.

I had to be gentle working with a material that could be so easily crushed and destroyed, I ha to be careful not to do too much, just let the leaves decide on their shape and form, then wrap quickly in the copper wire. I like the sense that at any moment, wind or motion could alter or undo the leaves resting places and yet somehow they also remained strong. I liked the interplay of impermanence, strength and fragility, that they were an avenue of not trees. The colours were disappearing but there were faint traces of their autumn fire. All the bases should be in the same orientation, but one has been moved, I have just noticed this and it bothers me. I can't go back in time and change it, put it right, I have to accept that memory and actuality differ, are imperfect. 

This piece is about time and place, 
lightly caught and held.

The Last of Autumn - Jan 2016
Carole Miles - NYB 2016
Artspace, Kettering

Sunday 24 January 2016

NYB16 - Artspace - Kettering

Carlos de Gredos

Graham Keddie

Susan Williams

Helen Frankland

Gloria Ceballos 

Carlos de Gredos

Carole Miles

Liam Hadjipetrou

Kate Dyer AKA Soup Dragon

Beetroot and Horseradish, Spicy Squash, Minestrone

Friday 22 January 2016

Installation Day NYB16

I spent a long and happy day at Artspace with Susan Williams, Gareth Williams, Hellen Frankland and Carlos de Gredos The theme was  'Nature as a material for art'  All exhibitors are asked to present their artworks in a wheelbarrow or send photos of their works for presentation in the studio.

Carlos de Gredos

Helen Frankland 

one of my pieces in progress

Susan and Gareth

Tuesday 19 January 2016

Preparing for NYB16

Preparing work for the Sculpture Network 
New Year Brunch

in the kitchen and alleyway 

in a wheelbarrow

in the frost - challenging!

Monday 18 January 2016

The International Postcard Show 2016

Surface Gallery welcomed back the International Postcard Show. A vibrant, long-running exhibition including hundreds of original artworks from established and aspiring artists from all over the world. All submissions were included, from painting and print through to textiles and illustration, creating a wonderfully eclectic mix of artwork. All artworks were priced at £15, if the work doesn't sell it can be swapped randomly with other work in the exhibition.

I sent these

looking forward to receiving my swaps!

Saturday 9 January 2016

Natural Dyes - Ruth Singer

Natural dyes workshop at the NCCD with Ruth Singer
during her wonderful Narrative Threads Exhibition

Dying with tea and iron

steaming wrapped bundles containing natural dye stuffs
saffron, beetroot, blueberries, leaves

Bundles removed from the steamer

Unwrapped results

Stamping and doodling on dyed fabrics.

Afterthoughts - very interesting process but hard just to dip into and I am left with a bundle of things that may or may not become something. As someone who enjoys using vibrant colours working with such a subtle range of colours was a challenge. It is something I feel I might revisit as my garden is full of plants that could yield colour for dyeing. Loved the exhibition and had a thought provoking day in good company.