Camberwell Cameo Submission

 

Hi All

I’m Alasdair

This is my Camberwell Cameo

My journey started with enrolment in the MA Fine Art Digital course at Camberwell College of Arts in September 2015.

I started at a roundabout.

Ever driven round a roundabout several times while trying to decide which exit to take? Well, that was me then.

But through the increasing dizziness emerged an exit.

There was something else on the London roundabout.

It was Brown.

He was born 300 years ago in 1716.

“Follow me, help me to be great again.” He said.  So, I did.

I grabbed my EOS 600D Cannon and drove West, North and South following the tracks of Brown on his horse.

From Alnwick

to Harwood

to Chatsworth

Chatsworth

to Burghley

to Blenheim

to Charlecote

to Croome

to Hampton Court Palace

And many others, some many times, walking and photographing iconic “Capability” landscapes across England as underlined in red on the map.

Then, back in the studio, I created photographic and cyanotype prints to celebrate the tercentenary of Lancelot Brown’s birth for exhibitions at Croome in Warwickshire, St Mary’s Church in Barnes London and, taking place now, in the Camberwell MA Summer Show 2017.  These celebration prints have Brown in the top left corner and the churches where he was born (Kirkhale in Northumbria), married (Stowe in Buckinghamshire) and buried (Fenstanton in Cambridgeshire) clockwise in the remaining three corners.

So, guess what?  I’m at the London roundabout again.

But this time, the centre of the roundabout is full of my work.

Look.

My boots are missing my legs.My dyslexic IMac is looping a five-minute Brown video.

My prints are on the floor.

My disabled ergonomic chair is turning around without me.

Dizziness haunts me again.

Stop the truck.

Save me!

‘Like’ this Cameo if you can.

Sign the book in Room G03 (above) in Wilson Road SE5 8PD before 20th July.

And I will do another Cameo about Lancelot Brown’s use of Hogarth’s serpentine line of beauty to shape his Ha-Has, ha-ha, ha-ha, ha-ha.

Thanks for viewing my Cameo.

 

Critical Evaluation

I set myself ambitious objectives at the beginning of the MA a fine art digital course in September 2015. These included (1) building on my painting practice following graduation from Camberwell in 2014; (2) seeing my work exhibited outside the academic environment; and (3) reaching that destination as soon as possible”.

With these objectives in mind, I chose to create digital collages of the life and work of Lancelot Brown to celebrate the forthcoming tercentenary in 2016 of Brown’s birth in 1716 as part of the course. The Landscape Institute, on seeing a prototype of my collages, encouraged me to develop a portfolio of work for an exhibition of contemporary photographs of Brown’s work planned at Somerset House. Somerset House subsequently declined to host the exhibition and I was obliged to look elsewhere for an exhibition host. The National Trust offered me the Temple Greenhouse at Croome, Worcestershire, in April 2016. The cornice and then the floor of the Temple Greenhouse collapsed during the summer. I then considered the Church at Croome as an alternative exhibition space but further constraints on the location and duration of the proposed exhibition required him to withdraw from Croome. Happily, the Friends of St Mary’s Barnes London undertook to stage an exhibition of my work in their church and I am very much indebted to them for doing so.

My journey was long and arduous with many ups and downs.  This included aborted excursions into cyanotype printing, where my work appeared on an University web site https://alasdairssite.wordpress.com/2015/12/12/cyanotype-prints/ , and the use of light boxes. I travelled extensively to take original photographs of iconic scenes at stately homes throughout England reaching Alnwick in Northumbria a second time after a snow dump had stopped my first attempt in January 2016.  On this second visit in August 2016 I visited Brown’s birthplace and attended a thanksgiving service for him at Kirkhale. I went as far West as Herefordshire to spend a day at Berrington one of the last properties build by Brown. I visited 20 properties taking maybe 40 photographs at each location, sometimes re-visiting many times to take the best photograph and to negotiate exhibition possibilities at Blenheim Palace, Claremont Gardens, Strawberry House, Hogarth House and many others.

I built on my previous exposure to digital painting to develop photographic prints. This required major advances in my ability to use and manage industry standard software and contemporary digital facilities for printing, mounting,  framing and showing pictures.

My ambitious objectives were achieved when I and my work were launched with my 40-minute presentation on Brown and first time solo exhibition of my photographic prints at St Mary’s Barnes, London SW13 9HL. Since that time, I have been extending my two-dimension practice into time and audio based art producing videos with the potential to lead into better video film making.

I have done my best to achieve my objectives notwithstanding registration by UAL as dyslexic and disabled in 2014. I have been handicapped by health and the  management of it,  but I have completed tasks that I would never have undertaken without enrolment on the course creating the motivation for me to do.  My Brown project serves as a prototype for further celebrations of the life and work of others including close contemporaries. I expect to be doing this while continuing my personal development following completion of the course in July.

I am most grateful to the course leader and his associates for their instruction and with the opportunity to undertake the MA Fine Art Digital course.

TERM SIX TUTORIAL

I had a tutorial with Jonathan today, Monday 12 June 2017, during which we discussed several issues relating to my online activity, Unit 2 assessment and, most importantly, my contribution to the final show now approaching fast.

We talked through the material that I had posted for the year end show on my blog and on the site provided for it.  There had been some comment on my proposal to place a table and chair near the display of my Capability Brown pictures during the online final show chat on the previous Thursday during which it had been suggested that a wall mounted screen with head phone might be better.

Jonathan suggested that perhaps the most interesting thing for many people about my Bown project was the journey that I took to make it and that perhaps this could be brought out by curating a table placed before the picture display on which not only the screen (probably one the course’s imac) and headphone would placed, but also a series og objects reflecting the work and journey.  These might include, for example, the boots that I wore, a map of the destinations I reached, post its and emails drawing attention to major events such as being stuck in snow, bitten by a dog and shown off the stately home premises.

All this would be capped by the egonomic chair, that UAL had provided for me, placed before it reflecting my disabled and dyslexic status.

Jonathan explained that it was common that the artist or individual would not see themselves in the same way that others might. There was often great interest in the personality of the artist additional to the artwork itself.

I thanked Jonathan for his comment say that I would give this approach additional thought and looked to undertake something appropriate at the end of the month.

Terry at Work 2

 

IMG_2476

Here I am again, except this time I have my own Cannon EOS 600D DSLR camera with which to photograph Terry – an upgrade from my Iphone.  This time too, we are in the Camberwell Studios, a professional facility open 7 days a week and where they have two studio to rent by the day.  This is a big step up on my studio and Terry has also taken a big step up by persuading two actors, a camera man, the script writer director and myself to be in attendance for most of the day.  A very interesting day and an introduction to film making for me.  Like everyday a book could be written about it.

Terry, of course, was for ever busy with the apparatus. This time the binaural head features eclipsing part of Terry’s head.  This mannequin has a mic in each year which supposed to take sound from stereo into 3 and 4 D sourcing and projection.  Interesting stuff.