Category Archives: Research and Reflection

Parallel Project. Found Images – Sculptures 1


As i started to look back and think how to get everything together, improve or rework some of the works for assignments i came to conclusion that apart from all the changes i need to make the work cohesive and somehow make it all work as one unit.

One of the works i am looking at is the part 4 “installation” – one reason is to take into account my tutors recommendations of how best to present the work as well as making better images. I am thinking of making a printed images that would work as one – triptych of front and side views.

Along side i’m continuing the research and incidentally came across an old documentary ( on BBC 4) about Barbara Hepworth sculptures. I have came across her works before and have seen some of her drawings in the gallery couple of years ago. The documentary ewoke my interest in developing drawing into a more solid 3D image – using materials i have around me. This sort of direction i used in my previous course and decided to go along with my instinct and let it work out. This goes along with the Parallel Project – found images and intuitive application.

Using Assignment 4 as inspiration, in particular the drawing of a horse by Leonardo da Vinci, i began implementing the idea using materials i had.

I feel that wire in a way replicates the line but in solid form – tactile but still quite light and can be used to recreate variety of marks/lines/curves etc.

The overall idea is to use already made drawings/paintings and “Find” images/forms that can be constructed into a solid structure.

Using wood cuts as base and variety of wire i had at hand i started to make a form inspired by the drawing of the horse and research about Barbara Hepworth sculptures. The idea here is to use the drawing but make a form that is more abstract and evolves itself.

Originally i started the sculpture that had two “legs” just as the 2d drawing. During the process i came upon a problem – it was not stable and kept collapsing or moving too much. I do like that wire creates movement in sculpture and perhaps can implement the form later by using a stronger materials and soldering iron – but i do not have it at this point.

Also i would like to mention that i am working on a small scale – i would like to imagine this works being larger, perhaps 20-30 feet tall …. again i have no means of doing this, and working on smaller scale is the only way. I do hope that it is possible to imagine how these works could look perhaps in a large field working with the landscape around it,  and on a scale that would allow people to walk amongst them.

I haven’t done this before and came across a few problems but the main thing i am finding ways of overcoming them and learning so much along the way.

Materials i have at hand at the moment – newspapers, shredded paper, old cloth, plaster and wire.

Using paper and tape i started by adding more “flesh” to the wire – here i found out that as i added materials the structure started changing and/or collapsing, especially when i started to add plaster.  The solution  here was to attach a long wire to the ceiling and use it as a support for the structure while plaster is drying. I am adding/covering the structure slowly part by part moving upwards trying to balance the weight.

I want the sculpture to be white at the end, so some of the ideas how to achieve this – use plaster of Paris at the later stage, paint it over with white etc. Why? Because i want to use the structure and light to create shadows on the space around it. This will be done later.

Below is the sculpture number one in progress, a smaller one that it developing itself along side and a third one that is based on assignment 1 drawing ( enlarged forms of mushrooms and plants).


summary: I’m hoping to create a few sculptures that will be inspired by works created during the course but will grow out of “found” images/lines within those works , hence creating a new work of it’s own but together they and drawings will create a cohesive “organism” that will be presented as an Installation that will include Parallel project and course work as one.


Partly the idea was inspired by works of Barbara Hepworth and Antony Gormley.

B. Hepworth used nature and places she visited to create sketches that later became solid forms that fitted naturally into the environment. Her sculptures feel organic even though she used quite hard materials – stone, metal, wood. This was achieved by (in my opinion) really connecting with the space prior to making – i can see how she replicated and implied the natural curves and textures into her sculptures. I tried to use this idea in my sculptures – even though the shapes are quite abstract i have tried to use nature as inspiration for shapes and forms. I also love the idea of the viewer to be able to look through the sculpture and see the space around it as if from a window or a frame , this creates a personal experience and connection with the work and space.

Works of A. Gormley (some) on the other hand to some extend overtake the space they occupy , still very organically and as if they belong there but mostly they appear to invade it , make it their own. Saying that i find his sculptures and the scale very inspirational and would love to visit the locations to experience this power of man-made over nature. While B. Hepworth found inspiration and shapes in nature A.Gormley finds his forms by using his own body, but both indeniably combine the world and imagination to create a new form of life in solid form.  At the moment i haven’t got resources and space to create something on such scale but as an idea i have superimposed the imagery onto landscape to get a feeling how my work might look on a large scale.








Parallel project. Abstract intuitive painting – Day and Night

Initially i used bright colours to cover the canvass later i got inspired by my garden and Californian poppies that bring joy and colour even on a  grey summer day. So the imagery found it’s way intuitively through process.


I kept voice notes during making of this piece as well as a few other, as i worked on a few projects at the same time. This one got finished first. I also written about it in Part 5 Project 4 Time and the viewer.


  1. Paint was applied using pallet knives, brushes and other tools i had to make marks and create textured underpainting .
  2. In a few days – I used charcoal to add some flowers, it was not the initial idea but it found it’s way in i suppose because of the colours used and the garden itself.
  3. Using diluted paint i applied darker colours trying to leave some of the flowers uncovered. Then i used white spirit ( i really like this technique) to create textures, following by plastic over the top.
  4. I was pleased that some of the flowers retained initial colour and was really happy with the texture that was created around.
  5. White chalk was used to add more shapes – then i stopped and decided to add white paint using brush and stippling technique to paint the negative space.
  6. As i progressed the decision worked out – in order not to make it completely covered like a mosaic i found a new solution – only cover half to create contrast and interest . Diagonal was chosen – i believe it works here as a curtain, or a mountain or a division between “Dark and Light” , “Day and Night” and creates a more dinamic composition.

I’m happy with it , the only thing is i might add more silver paint to the white area ( just as i did in the bottom left corner) – it brightens up the white and takes away the dullness of the opacity of it.


Some of the techniques and working ideas were inspired by the artist i have came across earlier in this course – Gina Stepaniuk. She uses world around her to find inspiration and “finds” imagery (composition, end result etc.) through direct engagement with the process. In the video below one can see some of her working methods and techniques. She also talk about her painting process and how she comes to the finished work by finding her way through chaos and being an alchemist that creates magic through connection with materials ( paraphrasing).

Gina Stepaniuk




Parallel project. Abstract intuitive painting – ongoing works

Some of the works that are almost done or waiting for a next step.

  1. Flowing (Flowers)  – here i’m using real petals from my garden Tulips. I’ve collected them just before they have fallen off and attached them to canvass using acrylic binder. It is very interesting to see how the colour have changed during a few month,. The only problem is as my PC stopped working i have managed to find just 2 pictures , but they are some of the first just after a few days of drying. I have also attached some dried forget-me-not stems and then using an ink pen added a few outlines that later were softened using water.


2.  This piece started out as sheet of paper  covered with frozen paint  cubes, variety of natural objects, and other materials. It was done during  Part 3 (physicality and gesture)

this is how it started ( after the ice melted)

As I was doing the sorting out on the shelf , i found this sheet after many month and decided that it might work for the parallel project. I had it pinned to the board for a few days, turning and trying to find something that would jump out. And it did, figuratively speaking ))

To my eye there was a shape of the dog or something, i used a pencil to add a few lines first then slowly found another “dog” or a “cow” …. or a giraffe… It does make me smile, which is important especially on a rainy overcast day .. Anyway, I’ve found the shapes, added some shadows and lines and  here it is at the moment – “happy chappies” . Interestingly they remind me my dogs – one is always after anything that moves, and another likes to look at me with his big pretty eyes and hypnotise until i give in and get them a biscuit))) Of course it is just my imagination..

I think some darker areas could be added or something .. i’m not sure at the moment. But as a part of the project – the image definitely was found intuitively and is a part of the whole. And it’s ok that that it is more figurative than abstract – some things just can’t stay hidden ))


Second Piece is a drawing using dip pen and ink on the second sheet of watercolour paper that was used in the project above. It had various staines and drips from paint and after looking at it for a while i started to develop them into an abstract “forest”


Next work was developed over quite a long period of time. At a starting point i have “found” my shadow on canvass and decided to capture it using watered down acrylic paints. I tried to move and change shapes as i so them appear, without thinking and tried to let loose.

Over a few sessions other shapes and mark were added using various tools and materials ( pastels, paints, charcoal, ink etc)

It is a work in progress but as well can be called finished for now. Personally i feel connected to this piece because during the process i was engaged with capturing my own shadows and mood at that moment.


To some extend this work (shadows) was inspired by works and techniques of Robert Motherwell. He used gesture and various tools to express himself through line and colour. He combines bold gestural marks with controlled elements. I find his work very engaging and visually complex , even ones where he use minimum of colour and line. The spatial relationships he creates on support balances between soft ovoid forms and hard edges  as well as explosion of contrast between bold colours and free flowing marks. He also used to create many collages and i used this as inspiration for 2 dimensional collage through line – capturing my shadow outline in sessions to create a linear collage of shapes and marks.

In my work i have tried to explore this idea of gesture and  contrast but in my own interpretation and using smaller format as well as tools.








Contextual focus point : Frank Auerbach’s portraiture


Frank Auerbach’s approach to portraiture is legendary and through it he makes some very interesting points about the nature of portraiture and of drawing. Research what makes Frank Auerbach’s portraits unique, and how he used the passage of time in them. Think about why he might have done that and make notes about how working from life differs from working from a photograph in terms of the way we experience the time spent.


Frank Auerbach was born in Berlin but at the age of just 7 was relocated to London during the WW2 as part of the kinder transport, he never saw his parents again. At a very young age he experienced a great loss and reality of bombed out London – the ruins, fire, devastation, rubble. All this has a profound effect on him as a person as well as an artist. Broken lines, thick paint. textured surface and unfinished lines. On first impression i felt that his work is a continuous replica of visual reality and inner experiences through the manner of paint application and the use of line – he is trying to capture the changing world as it goes by in a series of overlapped marks and textures.

Auerbach is a prolific painter – he paints every day and produces a great number of works but his subjects are mainly the same – part of North London near his studio and a small number of close friend and family , for example he has been painting his wife for over 60 years. Each work is a continued process of revision and reworking – corrections, more paint, scraping off the previous attempts , changes of an angle and so on. Due to this way of working  most of his work takes a very long time to complete. While in earlier works he over-painted previous attempts his practice changed later, now he scrapes everything off and works anew.

His drawings are a collection  of dancing marks that create a visual vibration – the way he created volume and shape on his portraits reminded me of “blind drawings”  where the mark on support is created while the other hand explores the surface of the face, working together to express touch through line. In his case the marks created in direct coordination with what he sees during the time spent with the sitter.

So why did he choose to paint this way?   It seems to me that through continuous takes of the same features he is trying to “find” the real persona. His choice of poses – not usual but rather observed from a distance – tell me that it is not the likeness of features to be captured but the movement and changes that occurs to the sitter. His work is not planned or visualised in advance but is build during the time spent – his marks and immediacy of application, even reworked, is like a process of capturing time and a fleeting moment.

The complexity of his painting demand a closer look and lead to many questions – the more you look at the painting the more you can see. Time he spends on one work, sometimes hundreds of hours, accumulates in very strong images that to some extend can be compared to a movie or many photographs that overlaid in one one still shot.

I feel that working in this way allows him to become one with the subject and inserts a piece of himself in the work. Spending a lot of time with his sitters helps him to dig deeper and reveal the real person – not just a flesh but feel below the surface, reveal and capture experience they share and bring the portrait to life.

Comparing this method to working with a photograph demonstrates the difference in total experience during the process and the connection that can arouse between the sitter and the artist. It is not possible to capture all the conversations and experiences that happened during the process but allows the artist to become one with the sitter and explore the changes that occur between the takes. The result is not just a picture you saw but the accumulation of time, connection, experiences and emotions between two individuals.

On a personal note, I have come across his work before, a few years back, and can see how my perception changed. I feel that now i understand a lot more of what artist wants to say through his work and found a closer connection with the process as well as the final portraits. While personally i prefer his drawings because i am drawn to the line and marks he makes I can not stop looking at his painting. They feel alive and even though some stir  uneasy feelings in me upon viewing, i appreciate the time that went into the making of each as well as undeniable feeling of movement and presence of captured time in each.

Below are a few of his works:


Self Portrait Frank Auerbach, self portrait 1994-2002;


Frank Auerbach, portrait of David Landau;

Head of Catherine Lampert, 2003–2004

Frank Auerbach., Head of Catherine Lampert;

Frank Auerbach, Portrait of Julia;

Frank auerbach, Head of Gerda Boehm;







Frank Auerbach




Project 3 A finer focus. research point

Gwen Hardie – born an educated in Scotland. She uses oil paint and spends no more than a day on her large scale paintings of magnifications of skin lit by a natural light that resemble the light effect found in landscape. She uses the canvass and oil paint to create an illusion of three dimensional space that appears to moves and resembles the outer skin layer.

  image sourse:

Here is one of the videos where her work can be seen on display

I definitely can relate to the idea of magnification – i found it interesting how she explores the same subject in different formats and as a series ( from pores to medical skin conditions etc).  It would be great to see her work close up to get a better understanding of her techniques and experience the “movement” she trying to portray.


Richard Wright – born in London, best known for his large scale intricate drawing on walls , glass and buildings. His work sometimes only lasts during the exhibition , temporary art, and then is painted over. His work explores and changes the space it occupies during the installation. He incorporates gold leaf into his work and uses old master techniques as well as intricately designed geometric patterns.

In his interview he mentions that he often looks for a “problem” area ( difficult) and tries to find the solution how his work will change it ( paraphrasing here) – i quite like this incite into how the artist picks his spaces, i can see how this process of changing/modifying the “canvass” works as important part of the whole.


Greyson Perry – British artist , work in a variety of media , well known for his ceramics with scenery/themed drawings. He enjoys “doodling” and tries to do it as often as possible for “fun” and generation of ideas. I find “doodling” very helpful, relaxing and feel that it can help to loosen up, lead to unexpected results and be very helpful in generating a starting point.

Paul Noble – British sculptor and draughtsman, best know for his extended over 15 years project “Nobson Newtown” – a series of drawings where he acted as an engineer, creator, architect to portray an imaginary city. His work is very detail and i was really impressed with the sheer number of elements that can be found ones i started looking closer. In the video below some of the works can be seen ( i used a pause button) as well as a short incite into artists working process.


Stephen Walter – Londoner that captures his native city’s life, events and history in mapped drawings. His work is highly detailed and annotated using words, symbols and keys. The symbols are not as those one can find in a usual map but personalised and sometimes humorous – from “areas to avoid because of dangerous dogs” to ” great palaces to have a quiet drink” (paraphrasing here). As he explained in his interview (link below) it took him around 1.5 years to complete. Starting with a projection of old city maps the drawing progressed through careful research online, books and personal visits to many places. His maps are record of historical events that happened to the place as well as his personal experiences.. He said in the video ” it is a map of shared history and the piece that acts as a mirror onto the viewer” – i can see how individual the response can be because we all experience different emotions and get involved into different activities in the same place. .

The level of detail in such a drawing leads to a more careful exploration, involvement with the work on deeper level and physical engagement creating a unique experience of discovery.

in Video below he explains about his London map









Project 2 An Artist’s book, research point

Research artist’s books as a form of artistic practice.


Hans Peter Feldmann – German visual artist. He collects images, items and creates various books to represent an idea, time or experience. A lot of his books do not contain any text apart from the title – this in a way makes work speak for itself and allows the viewer to experience visual imagery as they see it. This books do not form a basis for a further exploration/work but are works in  themselves. Here are some of the works he has created throughout the years–photography–monographs–feldmann–hans-peter.html


Wolfgang Tillmans – is a fine art photographer. He creates full room photo installations, video notes as well as books that contain imagery on a particular subject or idea. Such as architecture and how it changes according to space we take over to fit our needs; global changes and how things change over the period of time. His work on changes of car headlines – becoming more angular,  suggests a rise in competitiveness and predatory tactics to gain what we want. What i liked about his work is that it allows the viewer to  experience ordinary imagery on our own level but see closer and perhaps find angles/connections with subject that were not noticed or overlooked before.


Sol de Witt – well know for his geometric patterns, lines, curves and collaborations where other people create works that he initiated. He also is one of the pioneers  in the artist’s book being recognised as an art form in itself. His works were organised into books where one would explore variety of lines, arcs, patterns,colours etc.

Sol Lewitt. Artist’s Books

Eileen Hogan – English painter and book artist. She uses her interest in lettering as drawings and uses words as a connection between imagery and words. Her book tell a story of a particular subject or an event, through a collection of related images – such as sketches/painting over a period of time or during a making of a painting. she also created digital books where one can scroll through the images on screen rather than by flipping the pages, along with the sounds and videos that generate personal experience for the viewer. I found this quite an interesting idea ( combination of image and sound) – it makes one see for themselves but also get an incite from the artist.


Henry Matisse‘s book “Jazz” was created/started when he became ill. The book contains of his cut outs, collages and notes made by the artist. He used different techniques ( screen printing, stencelling eyc) to create his images for the book. In the video below on the 40th minute the curator shows and talks a bit about the book.

Dayanta Singh – a photographer, mainly working in black and white. What i liked about her work and idea is that she wants to change space with her images, be able to influence the experience and be part of it rather than it being static. She creates her books/installations and moves them around each time creating a new set up/experience and impact. She says in the video ” the book is a tactile, very private experience” and i so agree with her, nothing can take away the feeling of going through the pages, feeling the weight and listening to pages turned..


I’ve researched further into the variations of artist’s book and was really surprised at the vast variety and formats that there are. It really opened up my thinking of how works could be displayed, collected, stored, presented, experienced, viewed and so on. The ingenuity and craftsmanship of some artists/craftsmen is just mind blowing. This is something to explore further and enjoy as the time goes by – what can be better that looking through something you’ve made yourself and re-experiencing works that may have been just pushed under the cupboard.

Also the artist book is not just a sketchbook or a collection of images it is a work in itself, depending on the subject/inserts the book can tel it’s own story to each individual person viewing it. They can be purely imagery or contain a few words, or only words and perhaps just the blank pages but the time that went into making one will talk through the pages and grant a different experience every time.

ome of the articles about artist’s books and the divercity








Project 3 Research point:

Research point:

“Many artists use installative drawings and what these artists are doing positions the viewer or audience member in a totally different way to someone viewing a work on the wall contained within a frame.

Using the link below, look at the work curated for On Line, an exhibition of contemporary drawing held in Edinburgh in 2010. Look particularly at the section entitled ‘line extension’ which discusses the work of Robert Rauschenberg, Cy Twombly, Ellsworth Kelly, Karel Malich, Edward Krasinski and Pierrette Bloch:”

Line extension section presented works that use line to extend beyond flat surface of support into the 3D space we occupy.

I am familiar with some of the artists and their work that feature in this exhibition.

Personally i’m quite a fan of Alexander Calder’s wire works – he uses linear qualities of wire to place the drawing into the space away/out of the flat surface of paper. Added movement creates visual interest and in a way makes line appear as if it is in a process of being constantly drawn/changing.

A Calder,  Calder room at National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C.

Ellsworth Kelly – uses automatism and gesture often while not looking at the support – this creates lively markings , to my eye they resemble moving branches that could be seen on a large tree or grasses in the wind. Spontaneity and unpredictability of resulted marks appear still moving. In a way his use of gesture is similar to the Way Pollock used paint while immersed in the process of creating his canvasses.

some works by E. Kelly


Robert Rauschenberg – his work quite close to me personally , especially the idea of using “found” or recycled materials. His pioneering Technics of combining painting/drawing with performance art , as example where he used car to draw it’s tire marks, opened up new possibilities and doors into the idea  “we can do anything” in a name of art.

Automobile tire print :

Edward Krasinsky – his work was new to me but i found it exiting, as the idea of “leaving” the plain of the flat surface is quite similar to what i’m exploring at the moment.

Pierette Bloch (June 16, 1928 – July 7, 2017, french), . Why is she described as using “poor materials” and what do you think her materials lend to her subject matter?

Looking at her work makes me think she was very much interested in mark making and expressing the qualities of line by using materials that mimic it’s qualities. Why to use “poor”materials ? Sometimes the simplicity of material can capture momentum and imply the moment our eye sees the object , we can make out everything else later. I think her background in textiles led to the use of singular strands of horse hair, wire, thread, inks, paper – they found life of their own out of the whole piece delivering “simple” but striking result at the same time. Also she is being referred to as a modest person, as example she mostly signed her works on the back, and this perhaps was her way of relating to works produced.

image source

Her works are mostly in black and white, linear and appear moving in space while remaining static at the same time. I particularly liked Horse hair and wire pieces – i can imagine that the hair move as the viewer comes close or walks by. The elegant twirls and knots create ever changing line that in it’s simplicity takes over the space it’s occupying.

Some of her work reminded me of works by Russian installation artist Dmitri Gutov, in particular work where he uses fishing line. In an example below he used line attached to walls with dust particles tied to them.  I found this project fascinating and it captivated my imagination when i heard of it.

To what extent would you say that this piece by Louise Bourgeois is a drawing?”

( i could not find the image that is in the course materials, but the one below is similar)

image source:

She uses theme of spiders throughout and has a lot of drawings using hard media to very fluid paint. Also she has produced a series of sculptures where she plays with scale and materials. To me , the answer to the question is – i think it is a sculptured drawing that found it’s way from flat 2D support and emerged as a 3D object that fills the space and interacts with the viewer on a different level. I feel that material and the linear qualities play role of drawing in space/air rather than being on a paper surface.