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In September last year I was asked to create a wall drawing in the Vault Artist Studios members room. I drew this piece, a Fibunacci sequence inspired, planet like layering of regular circles in chalk. The chalk had not been sprayed with fixative, over the weeks and months parts of the drawing had been smudged and worn away as people’s presence marked the passage of time. This became a slow visual metaphor for the studio members’ transient presence in this former technical college.

Vault hosted an excellent Fringe festival on the first and second of June this year, comprising over 100 events and projects happening in the building and the car park. In preparation for this, the exterior of the building and the members room underwent a vibrant redecoration. The first drawing was covered up.

I drew a new site specific piece in a different part of the room using wax crayon:

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The deep indigo background marks a break with monochrome. This drawing plays with imperfect symmetrical forms, incorporating influences from many sources including early arcade game vector graphics, sacred geometry and heavy metal logo typography.

Detail:

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Here in the finished room, the drawing is surprisingly augmented with a rack holding pool cues.

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I

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II

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I set myself the task of having a couple of new drawings ready for Culture Night Belfast on Friday last week. We had an open evening at Cathedral Studios. This is as far as I got with the drawings, the one on the left needs more work.

 

 

 

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I was pleased to be asked to do a wall drawing in the vault artist studios members’ room, formerly the reception area of Tower Street Belfast Met. Pool table, leather sofa and bespoke bar are out of shot.

I’m not certain it is finished, if I work more layers on it I’ll post up the results.

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These are finished in the sense that any art work ever is. I could keep working at them adding more layers but judge it’s time to paint over them and start again.

I

drawing 1

II

Drawing 2

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Blue Whale are thrilled to have moved in to Vault Artist Studios, alongside almost 90 other creative practitioners. I did a bit of decorating of the outside of our space tonight.

 

 

I created this wall drawing by working directly onto the wall of Pollen studios in Belfast. The wall surface was rough and full of character, showing evidence of many past exhibitions in the space.

My performance set-up, utilising both electronic and analogue kit components, a loop station and a Marshall Amplifier remained in the space after my performance on the opening night, as sculptural presences.

Wall Drawing, Pollen Studios.

 

 

 

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I keep returning to this drawing and working over it, an hour or two at a time. I hypothesise that eventually the individual lines will no longer be visible in the general morass of chalk.

Studio Space

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Drawing I

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Drawing II

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These wall drawings were rendered with pencil. It operates in a more subtle, elusive register than chalk. The viewer is forced to look closer and from different angles to discern the complete shape of the work.

I experiment with the inclusion of resonant objects in keeping with drawing. For example, in a recent studio critique I included two small pieces of metal, one a triangle and one a parallelogram placed on the floor. Their forms informed these drawings. I interrogate chosen objects and their exact placement in their environment.

Drawings are ephemeral, planned to be made, rigorously documented and painted over. I do not want to overly prescribe how the works should or should not be read. The work is richer if it invites multiple interpretations. Subtle clues can be given but I find strength through ‘undecidability.’

The photograph below shows two recent wall drawings, created in the weeks leading up to culture night Belfast on the 18th of September. A dark blue bass drum has been placed in front of them.

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Drawing I

triangle drawing

Drawing II

circle drawing

I also made a sound performance piece with Michael O’Halloran that evening, he using guitar and a loop station, and I playing bass drum, hi-hat and snare drum. The rules that governed this were as follows:

‘Loop station Performance’

  • The guitar will be playing within a loop that will repeat after a predetermined amount of time.
  • The tempo and the key will be fixed, and notes will be improvised within a recurring pattern.
  • The pattern will be manipulated with digital effects, but always manipulated as a whole.
  • The drums will follow the pattern established by the guitar.
  • The performance will last ten minutes.

The performance was intended to augment/activate the drawings in a thoughtful way. Just as they were produced by a process of repetition and layering of individual component shapes, the idea was to layer and repeat notes to eventually achieve a complex build up of sound.

 

2 drawings and drum

After culture night I decided to leave the bass drum in front of the drawings. The drum’s form is sculptural, the circular shape echoes the shape of the drawing. It is a resonant object both sonically and symbolically.

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