Firstly, I have to say that I pleased and extremely flattered by my tutor feedback. Cari has identified strengths in my work that I intend to use as I move forward onto Ideas and Processes:
- Drawing skills
- Eye for composition
- Thoughtful analysis and reflection
- Good use of descriptive language and context-specific vocabulary (for this level)
I have often found things that challenge me actually inspire the most learning. Mirroring this, the areas that Cari has identified as not working are really useful. For example:
“The conceptual weight applied [at this point] which doesn’t appear in the earlier development work.”
Right at the beginning of the project I stated I wanted to pursue a process-led investigation and identified my interest in Formalism above all else. I successfully used printmaking and 3D manipulation to explore pattern generation. Then as if from nowhere, I concluded the project with a Conceptual piece. My sketchbook work drops off suddenly, the empty pages stare blankly as if to illustrate my own bewilderment.
To say ‘as if from nowhere’ is disingenuous, on reflection I would attribute my deviation from the brief to two main factors:
The wording of a “Final Piece” – Early on I could see merits in my sampling and I knew I had some strong pieces, I simply did not know how to develop them into a ‘Final Piece”.
Having spoken to Cari, I realise a “Collection” would have been a more suitable conclusion:
“A series of refined printed designs- a family of patterns which share colour and pattern aesthetic but at different scales and density, exploring layering and density of pattern.”
Here I feel Cari is ‘speaking my language’ -this fills me with excitement -this is me!
I think I brought deeply embedded preconceptions to the term ‘A Final Piece’. Despite my project’s clear concern for design principles, I reverted to my Fine Art experience to justify the Quilt/Cloak. To add value I automatically tried to intellectualise it.
My reading and research: As I read about the Art/Craft debate and researched the implications of Sloppy Craft, I allowed myself to become distracted, falling into what Cari described as a ‘rabbit hole’. She is absolutely right when she says I was: “swayed by external perceptions of value” I have a naïve tendency to believe what I read and I need to be mindful of the sources I am using. For Example: Tate.org has a heavy bias toward art.
Since Textiles straddle Art, Design and Craft, there was nothing inheritantly wrong with my decision to work conceptually; many artists use craft materials and processes in their work. It just wasn’t the right conclusion to the brief I set and the preparatory work I did. I also need to remember why I’m here on a Textiles Course, doing something new.
“Try to ground your reading by considering it against your innate strengths and interests.”
I find it really interesting that my ‘Final Piece’ and the ‘Pseudo Final Piece’ both assumed a flat rectangular form: suitable to be displayed against the wall in a gallery. This seems to be a sort of default setting in me, I need to think more carefully about the context of my work. Think outside of the White Box!
I am keen to move onto my next course but I don’t feel comfortable leaving the project as it stands. I discussed my next steps with Cari:
ACTION PLAN BEFORE ASSESSMENT
- The emotive conceptual reading of the Quilt/Cloak to remain as evidence that I thought about alternative interpretations and contexts.
- Re-evaluate Quilt/Cloak without reference to concept, ie, using formalist principles.
- Fill gaps towards end of sketchbook with regard to Quilt/Cloak.
- Elevate earlier samples through presentation.
- Support samples with photography.
- Re-evaluate pattern-based, process-led samples, consider in appropriate context.
Having reviewed my feedback I have clearer ideas about how the project could have been concluded, I will be adding notes about this also. The extent of this remains unclear and I will reconsider when the work is physically in front of me again.