Apologies for my lack of blogging lately! I am back on track and ready to tell you all about my latest artistic ventures.
So I was kindly invited to a pop-up exhibition back in May by one of the featured photographers, Alex Moldovan, therefore I could not refuse! The exhibition named 'Without Us There Is Only Mud' was organised by The Unpretentious Arts, an Arts House run by a passionate couple, Brian and Antonia Kinlan.
The exhibition explores nine different interpretations by four photographers and five artists, of nine poems written by Brian Kinlan. Initially when I arrived at the event, I was astounded by the amount of people who turned up to see the wonderful artists! This made it difficult to interact with the artists themselves, however I was able to view their work without any knowledge of the poetry which inspired each piece. This approach was refreshing and allowed me to gain my own perspective of each work rather than being influenced by the text which they had interpreted. Even so, I did get a copy of the poetry collection after viewing the work which gave me a better insight into the intentions of the artists/ photographers.
|'Devils in Our Midst' by Caitlin Sagan|
The next set of work interested me greatly with Brian Lewis' drawings which he even admitted to be quite illustrative. The set of drawings were presented in a triptych style; the subject of the images being very open to interpretation. Dark, thick lines gave a comic-strip feel to his work; the bright blue background enhanced this notion.
|Brian Lewis, left, standing in front of his illustrative triptych. Photograph by Alex Taylor.|
I was very pleased to manage to talk to Lewis about his work and view it from the artist's perspective. His illustrations were seemingly created using charcoal, but I was soon corrected and was told of the true media, "woodys". Having never heard of this media before, I was especially impressed by the artist's passion to gain and use such a unique form of material. Lewis then went on to say how his creations were made "in front of the television" and straight from his imagination. This was an admirable quality to have and demonstrated his abilities as an artist. I was given a new perspective of his work when he picked up some of his drawings, turning the pages to allow me to see a variety of imagery within individual pieces. Overall, Lewis was pleasant to speak with and even demonstrated an interest in myself as a budding illustrator, offering advice.
|Briony Sulivan's painting interpreting poem, 'Last of the Mohicans'.|
Photograph by Alex Taylor.
Below, Alex Taylor's eerie yet stunning interpretation of Kinlan's poem 'Forced Eviction'. Focus is immediately drawn to the fallen tree among its structured neighbours relating well with the line 'Movement is strange when used to standing still' from the poem. The nature is personified in relation to the poem giving a sense of life and emotion. Reflections in the river give depth to the image, whilst portraying the image in black and white insinuates there is something dark and unknown within the image.
|Alex Taylor's 'Shore Line', interpretation of poem written by Brian Kinlan|
Moving along the exhibition, Alex Moldovan presented a conceptual piece of photography with the title 'Trapped'.
|'Trapped' by Alex Moldovan|
I love the way the photographer made the arms appear to have the same texture as the bark of the tree as though the branches have taken human form. It is very effective and makes the tree behind the subject (self-portrait) come to life immediately. This reflects one particular line of the poem 'Merchants of Death' by Kinlan - 'Chippings give an aesthetic appeal'. The density of the forest gives a sense of isolation which can reflect the title 'trapped' quite easily, as well as the subject being physically 'trapped' among the 'arms' of the tree. Regardless of the idea of being trapped, the subject does not appear to be resisting; this may be in response to two of the lines in the poem: 'I no longer contain any fight, Or defiance'. Overall, this piece is effective and reflects the chosen poem very well.
|Photograph by Mark Primus|
|Artists in front of Lawrence's contemporary piece.|