elenahpowell

Freedom… But not really.

In Edinburgh, Edinburgh College of Art on May 5, 2015 at 2:51 pm

We’re done for the year. That’s very, very scary.

Much has happened. I’ve shown work (in two places simultaneously…), almost caused serious injury weaving a lot in very little time and I don’t know what else.

I finished the work for Stanley Mills the day before, it had to be cut short because I ran out of cotton and time and it was very painful by the end. But it’s about 18 metres long, 2.5″ wide and wove in and out of pillars on the weaving floor. I’m pretty happy really – it looks how I imagined, it supported itself (so I didn’t have to interfere with the fabric of the building – thanks gravity) and it’s not at all separate from the rest of what I’m working on (last time, for Cultybraggan, what I made was so distant from everything else it was awful).

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It now looks like this. If it was comfy I’d use it as a cushion, but it’s pretty dense cotton. So it’s just a thing on the bookshelf of things.

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The other thing was for the first interdisciplinary ECA 3rd year show (bit of a mouthful), in the same place where we had our end of first year interdisciplinary show. Loops and loops.

Fabric from the Dryad loom (I couldn’t save it to continue weaving) and text. I even titled it (rare I know) – Loom of Destiny because I have a terrible sense of humour. I’m going to be a crazy weaving spinster with a lot of cats, and eventually someone will have to cut my last bit of weaving from my loom.

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Theoretically I’m free until September now. Realistically there’s a lot to do. I’ve taken over the living room as a studio (there’s a loom permanently out and three more in the cupboards), it’s quite nice really. Much cosier than the actual studios and I get to look out at trees. I’m catching up on patterns i didn’t get a chance to weave and (once some books arrive) I’m going to attempt to master doubleweave. Which is pretty much two bits of fabric at once. From what I can figure out without having read the books… you can do much more 3D things, and it’s apparently possible to weave something double the width of the loom. Which would be REALLY useful – that’d be about 30″ wide! Assuming that a) I can  understand how to do it and b) somehow translate that into my own patterns. We’ll see.

This is the last thing I did, it’s only small but it’s the most complicated pattern. There’s no repeats in the warp and each weft repeat is 111 threads. So this is one repeat, which with the wool I was using is about 28x13cm.

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The numbers are from when I was weaving the pieces for Stanley, every 10cm I’d write down the length and time. So this is all the data from weaving from 6m piece of fabric. And then when I do a full length bit of this (a couple of metres) I can take the measurements and times from that and make something else and something else and something else… In fact if I can’t figure out how to get doubleweave to work with my patterns, I can do the same thing with that. Weave a beautiful bit of ‘traditional’ fabric and then do the data from the bit of fabric and have them together.

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Post its of data.

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One repeat.

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I got distracted from the ‘everything else I’m meant to be doing’ part. I’ve sorted started dissertation research already, might as well use the next four months… I think I’ve decided to go for the longer, extra credit option (when I get it right, my essay grades are more reliable than studio grades and if I’m planning on applying for the MPhil course – more later – a longer thing will be more useful). I’m going to have to go through my essay from last semester (the object biography that went well) and pick some things from there, but I think it’ll be thread related. I’m looking for a very, very, very small ‘gap in existing’ knowledge that I can dig out. Also applying for things, I sent off an application for Selected 2015 this morning (I’ll be amazed if that ends well, but worth a shot).

I…think I’m going to apply for the art MPhil, to start either the September or January after I graduate. (No, not entirely because I don’t know what I want to do with my life…). In some ways it’s the best time to do it (because I’m here, I’d still have somewhere to live, if I find a nice little gap in my dissertation I can go wild with that), and in some ways not – I’d be going straight from undergrad to postgrad with four months gap in between (hence maybe January). We’ll see how that goes anyway. All the funding application deadlines are early next year, so I’ll have to have applied by the end of December at the latest to be able to apply for those. Advantage of having four months semi-freedom, I can start preparing now… (I’m not kidding, the application guidance notes are printed and stuck to the fridge). So that’s that. Lots of researching to do.

We found time to see some art though… Where Language Ends was really, really, really beautiful.

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