First week back and I’m early, really early, because the timetable is wrong. However, I was lucky that Dr Natasha Mayo (ceramics lecturer) was in super early too. Our conversation became like an impromptu tutorial. Her research is about the domestic and we discussed the difficulties of maintaining a practice alongside parenting. She encouraged me to see the things that I did during my time as a mother, that maintained my creativity with, artistic value. Her friend, Claire Loder, is involved with a community garden and she now sees this as her practice. Natasha also suggested I look at Grant Kester and Nicholas Bourriaud to help me think about an artistic practice in new ways. I tell her about “The Re-enchantment of Art” and she hasn’t heard of it. I haven’t finished reading “The Re-enchantment of Art” yet and I am sure I will re read it because I have learnt a great deal from it and will continue to do so. It is helping me to look at the different aspects of my work and re-evaluate them in relation to artistic practice. She was encouraging when I told her about my planned project of weaving with plastics on a peg loom saying she thought I was heading in the right direction or that I’d got it covered? Something like that.
The actual lecturer for the session arrived and the conversation shifted. Natasha had just popped in to welcome everyone back after the Christmas break. The rest of the students arrive. Julie and Chris from Global Design sat with me, and my group sit at the back.
Sarah Smith is talking to us about Future thinking – Creative Entrepreneurship. She asks the group to define “Entrepreneurship”. No one mentions money and she is pleased saying we are her favourite group. “to initiate an idea, to start something.” “..creative ideal, about how our ideas can be applied in the world. To find new and innovative ways to apply them.” “Sharing ideas and answers to the public.”
Sarah provided lots of tools for helping us to place our focus into context and hone down our area of concern. Take the lake and turn it into a puddle not a well.
We were shown a diagram that had been devised by an academic research group that identifies the issues of our time. I chose ‘Mitigating Environmental and ecological Damage’, ‘Civic Disaffection’ and ‘Void of vision and foresight’ as my areas of focus and these corresponded with ‘Environmental Sustainability’ from another list created by “nesta” and “Pearson.”
How do we define ‘Value’ and value creation? Why would people want to engage with my work? We need to find “the Hook”.
We were then given a formula for mapping out the entrepreneurial canvas.
D x V x F > R
Dissatisfaction with the past (X) Vision for the future (X) First steps must be greater than the Resistance to change.
I am dissatisfied by our disregard for the finite resource of our planet. Over consumption, inequality, and waste.
My Vision is of a sustainable future which considers future generations and is based on equity and well being.
First steps, create a project that will bring people together to highlight waste and find ways to utilise waste using ancient skills to start a dialogue about how the old can inform the new.
There will be a resistance to the idea of going backward instead of forwards and a belief that I want people to reject “progressive” technologies. There will be an issue with time, efficiency, and commercial viability.
I found all this very useful, and it is giving me confidence in my project and tools which will help me to sell the project.
A couple of people shared their research areas. Hali is looking at women and trees and how both have been reduced to commodity, and Rowan is looking at the role of class in the fashion industry and how teaching sewing in schools could break down the barriers around class and gender that he has faced entering fashion. Both such interesting projects.
My project is weaving with silage wrap and bailing twine on a peg loom. I am hoping to develop a more domestic version of this idea using single use plastics and maybe cables, I don’t know yet. I am going to have to experiment more. But the silage wrap/baling twine can be done alongside traditional wool weaving to bring the sheep farmers and the price of wool into the mix, as it is a much undervalued and useful resource.
It was lovely to see the MA gang and involved lots of hugs. I got my display up in the studio. Having the bottle top tendrils on chains makes them much better to handle and I am much happier with the central sculpture. My final job that I did in the studio was to make small mushrooms so that the tendrils then turned into mycelium.
So glad to be back. Grateful to find my little caravan was relatively dry and looking forward to more Context and Methodologies lectures.
I got my portfolio in early. I decided to add a couple (4) of photos of the Celf o Gwmpas Stiwdio gallery/shop at the end after Andre was really vague about whether I should or not. “Yes, include if appropriate.” No idea if I’ve got it right but I will soon find out. I think we should have our results/marks on 20th Jan. which is also the day I do two Rhos pasture lantern making workshops with local school. Next job is to put together an instruction leaflet for that.
Stiwdio Celf o Gwmpas Gallery/Shop