T. was born on 14 May and the past two weeks have been something of a dream... Time is measured according to his age in days and returning now to my blog – to life and thoughts before Day 0 – is quite a jolt.
I'd spent the day before his birth in the studio, experimenting with my pyramid maquettes. Work was difficult, having to sit down to take photographs; slow and clumsy manoeuvring my props. The few images I shot are perhaps more like documents of sculptural / installation pieces than video stills – the projections and surface textures are hard to capture on camera and it seems important to be able to move around the objects to view their different facets. (I think of Sinta Werner's large format slide works Broken bits of pieces.) Or perhaps they are assemblages to be filmed, miniature sets to explore with a roving lens rather than a static camera. (I think of Charlotte Moth's Study for a 16mm Film)...
Expansive landscapes rendered faintly over raw linen are analysed and contemplated by a language of geometric forms that cast a reticle over the painted space, optimistically charting its return to a paradise lost.
Alex Virji's quietly romantic paintings currently on show at Man & Eve describe imagined or remembered landscapes in sketchy, fleeting marks. With graphite and set square the artist-cartographer traces delicate contours over these shadowy places (mountainous, fluvial, forested) – fractioning the frame like viewfinder grids; drawing provisional maps, or scores, for future (fictional?) journeys. The canvases call to mind Peter Greenaway's early works on paper (at once meticulously cartographic and beautifully painterly); the dreamy, improbable vision of René Daumal's Mount Analogue; and of course Ballard's Crystal World...
What is called into question is the nature of the viewer and their intentions on the landscape, as the lines transecting the picture plane measure and attempt to quantify it ... It may be that this tense, but active relationship between found structure and imposed form is simply a reflection of the retinal battle between an individual observer and the world they try to navigate and locate themselves within. Essay by Fin Cullum
Yesterday marked the halfway point of my time with Reside. Three months have passed incredibly quickly and my baby is now due in just over a fortnight. Before then I'm hoping to have tried projecting my 8mm footage through these tetrahedron maquettes – roughly constructed for now in mirror card and acetate – and to have commissioned some real, hinged pyramids in glass...
Meanwhile... group show Discernible continues at Zeitgeist Arts Projects until 11 May. Here are some installation shots:
Michaela Nettell is an artist and filmmaker based in London.
I work across moving image, photography and installation, creating works that explore the potential of projection and collage techniques to affect relations of space, optics and memory.
Recent and current works explore relationships between man-made and natural forms, particularly in the urban environment. My ongoing 1964 Series documents incidences of non-orthogonal structures in post-war city architectures, making reference to Frank Lloyd Wright's 'organic architecture' and the hexagonal plan. Colours and patterns of beehives and the honeycomb recur in my work and I often limit my palette to black, white, yellow and blue – Austrian ethologist Karl von Frisch's Colours inside an apiary.
- Reside Blog: Maribel Mas
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