A little more about my recent weaving commission, KURUKURU, a result of the brief by Landfill Editions to create a work ‘that referenced in some way Eduardo Paolozzi’s visual maximalism, disorienting juxtapositions and oblique political commentary.’
From ‘Eduardo Paolozzi’ by Diane Kirkpatrick, Studio Vista 1970
‘Perhaps the central unifying concept which has underlaid his work from his student days to the present is the desire to express the quality of mystery, of magic, which he finds present in the ordinary objects and events of the world- what he has called ‘the sublime of everyday life.’
‘More recently this has been joined by the desire to express something of the schizophrenic quality’ of present western urban life.
…he was attracted to work that was intricate and ‘busy’ like the drawings of Durer, Rembrandt, Piero di Cosimo’s paintings, Byzantine and Gothic ivories, and the surfaces of oriental bronzes. In such works he found ‘other ways of handling my own obsession with detail… For me as for Piero di Cosimo, detail is…a world within a world, and then another world within this last world, like a series of boxes in which each box once opened, reveals in turn another box, and then again another box’ (roditi, Dialogues in art).’
What I took from my research of Paolozzi’s process of working that I could in some way relate to my own way of working was his fascination of details, of worlds within worlds and what I admire greatly is his collaging of seemingly disparate elements that by the unifying power of his Self create new worlds unique to him, yet relate so much to us understanding the world as a whole.
‘LOTS OF PICTURES, LOTS OF FUN’ Paolozzi Screen print 1971.
It seemed natural to me to relate to the site of Pick Me Up (Somerset house embankment gallery) firstly because I have a history with the space. Having worked as a gallery assistant following my graduation from Brighton University and return to my hometown I clocked up many hours pacing the floorboards of the embankment galleries, and all the thoughts that follow have become a part of the interior of the space for me. Secondly I find a fascination in the nature of a graphic arts fair, the complexity of so many peoples work, individual ideas and narratives and collectives visions all swirling about each other is very much a collage in itself if we were to assume a birds eye view.
Scan from ‘Japanese family crests’ published by Seigensha
So I was aiming to create a piece that reflected on this nature of Pick Me Up, resulting in a floor plan of sorts of the show, within each section are references of colliding worlds, pick me up exhibitors… somerset house…paolozzi… and my own world.
I am beginning to think about the display of these hangings. It is the process and materials that is exciting about weaving, which is what I want people to understand. I wonder in order to do so it is necessary for people to be able to view them 360 degrees- to treat them as 3d works… to see the reverse, the selvedges and to leave the yarn free at the bottom in order to see the yarns travelling across the structure.
From a child’s perspective, Paolozzi’s elephant.