Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Mixed Media Class at the Wanaka Autumn Arts School 2016

Gelli print by Claire
I was thrilled to return to teach at the  Autumn Arts School in Wanaka for a week of print based mixed media explorations.  The aim was to be involved in pursuing individual artistic vision through reinterpreting traditional methods of working, considering ways to structure a project/theme and seeing ourselves as artist inventors/experimenters. Sometimes it is easier to take a risk and make discoveries in a workshop situation!

One of our first activities was offering up work we had previously made that we considered a 'failure'. Everything was up for grabs and students could take whatever they wanted to create a new artwork. It can be less threatening and easier to be more objective about someone else's work.  Having a wide selection of visual source material makes the reinterpreting/collating/design process hands on and full of choice and the interventions of what was offered combined with what participants brought to the work was very interesting. 

Participants brought art 'fails' with them
Ann's Collage

One of the initial solutions 

Prue's collage relating to her
 quatrefoil research

We did make art journals but rather than aiming to make a finished product over the week we got into a variety of interventions on paper and fabric towards creating a collection of layered surfaces, textures and experimental samples. We used printmaking techniques that lend themselves towards abstract and painterly effects through mono printing, rusting, collagraph and gelli prints. Some collagraph plates were gorgeous in their own right.

Belinda's collagraph plate

Rusting & Gesso

Claire's interventions of rust and print

Gesso texture through plastic lace by Jahn

One of the most fluid ways of working was, rather than making a collagraph plate where materials are glued down and sealed,  to print things directly from an inked up flat of colour.  Janet's threads form a perfect example of this.

plate on left, print on right

We made relief and intaglio solar prints as a way to process  graphic, photographic and text plates. 

Belinda exposing a solar plate in the sun
Kay's relief solar print from a photo

Vic's solar print
The same image which Vic is now stitching into
 the lining of a jacket.
More stitching....

Jahn's beautiful stitched response to a vintage pattern.

A stitched /dyed muslin page in Karen's art journal. 
Printed and stitched leaves by Corry
Reverse of Corry's stitching - the embossing is visible
Ann - printed stitching. India theme.

Here we are at work. Someone came in and described our room as the Industrial Revolution and indeed it was always abuzz. Printing! Stitching! Glueing!  Thinking! I wanted t cry when we had to pack up and finish - we all wanted to keep going .

Karen at her desk
 Sandy re purposing scrapbooking tools 
(We were lucky to have access to Barbara MacKenzie's
Big Shot and Jenny Sutherland's industrial AccuCut and dies.)  

Sandy using the die cut 'negative' as frames over prints

Some more lovely examples from the week....

Kay's moth - print,chine colle and walnut ink

Art journals by Megan
Claire's blue grey palette of gelli prints

Corry's art journal
Corry's solar print of Mt Aspiring

Pam's dressmaking themed work
Pam's work - on her second theme of hiking

Janet's stitching 
Vic's ratty - combining the abject with  beautiful lace
Rolled music - Janet

A clever idea -  don't you love this as a way to store and travel with your paintbrushes.

Somehow we still fitted in time for bubbles and I got treated to a most delicious, memorable breakfast from Megan, Ulva and Janet before driving home on Saturday.


Yum - thank you - loved the pancakes Megan!

Special thanks to The Upper Clutha Community Arts Council, Robyn van Reenen, Dennis and Susan Manson (check out her business Fully Wooly below)