Making Personal Work

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Rael Lockwood. Dear Diary Series. Hand built ceramic plates. 2016.
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A Letter to a Dress. Stitched silk and a wedding dress. 2016

I have really developed a stronger understanding of my work by examining textiles as a personal and cultural archive. Looking back on past works really established the emphasis I have on the personal aspects of making and how textiles and ceramics has helped that.

I would like to summarize my studio process and work this year a piece from my final paper this term about my work thus far.

“Cloth preserves values and traditions and provides us with connective experiences as we interact with cloth in our material world. My goal is to create lasting relationships with textiles that other people can relate to. I believe that there are traces of ourselves left in materials as we interact with; traces that change them into objects of meaning. I see those traces as hints of the hand that gives the work value. Meaning is established through the process, link social consideration, and personal reflection. Meaning is established through memories. Memories that would be mere ephemera if they did not embed, dare I say weave, themselves into our consciousness; into the cloth and textiles that we surround ourselves with. The textiles that protect us and guide us.”

Rael

An interview with a Fellow Studio mate

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Sometimes we forget to really ask our colleagues difficult questions about their work. I am taking this opportunity to sit down and ask Asma Ismail a few things about the development of her art practice.

Rael: Why ACAD, viagra approved I am always really curious about the origin stories or decisions people make to attend art school.

Asma: honesty, sick it is because I did not know what else to do, and though it was a good foundation for building the potential for a masters later.

Rael: What was the most crucial material/technique that changed or developed your work now? Why

Asma: Natural dyes. Cause synthetic dyes seemed dull and not right. They was no connection to the dyeing process whereas the natural dye process is so demanding of my body, and constantly keeping me engaged and reworking around the unexpected turn of events.

Rael: Have you looked at graduate program yet?

Asma: No, it makes me want to cry.

 

-Rael

 

 

Simplifying Design

I have really refined my floral designs throughout stencil making. I find that stencil cutting allows me to design with clarity and intention. Sketching directly on the stencil paper pushes me to commit to a design and work through the whole stencil. After most of the key components are decided and cut, view I make additions free handed with the Exacto knife. The immediacy is challenging and rewarding.

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This shows the steps of how I star from a cut stencil, capsule then paste onto linen, prostate then once the linen is dyed the paste is washed away to reveal the pattern/

 

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Completed indigo dyed linen sewn into pillows, tea towels, and coasters for the home. As you can see I am a little obsessed with gradient dying. 

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I am hoping to continue working on stenciling throughout the next phase of work I produce.

Rael

Conversations surrounding Early Canadian Weaving

Are hand woven textile objects more than just a document of traditions born from the necessity of survival? How does hand weaving cloth still play a role in contemporary textiles? These questions pertain to my research this year. I have become very interested in the concept of origin and heirloom and how objects provide the importance of the handwoven coverlet as a crucial piece of the textile history of early Canada. Canadian textile Curator Dorothy K. Burnham provides us a foundation for defining the connective thread running from the importance of materials and culture in the past to the present. Immigration plays a key to the social, clinic economical development of cloth production in the home.

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Coverlet for the bed. North America: Waterloo County, Ontario, Canada. C. 1860. L 234 cm x W 184 cm. Cotton and wool. Hand woven, overshot, hand-sewn. From the Textile Museum of Canada Collection.
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Burnham, Dorothy K., Harold B. Burnham. Keep Me Warm One Night: Early handweaving in Eastern Canada. Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1973. Print.
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Photograph from Keep Me Warm One Night Exhibition. Royal Ontario Museum. 1971. Web. 28 Nov. 2016.

In art history my research into early Canadian handweaving lead me to this wonderful book called Keep Me Warm One Night. It goes into great technical detail about the handweaving and  the importance of the coverlet in Canadian homes. This textile object served as a functional item for warmth on the bed, which was thought to be “the center of the home” (Burnham and Burnham 141). Coverlets were also equally beautiful in their craftsmanship often using handspun and hand dyed wool yarns. This cherished textile within the home of so many early Canadian homes serves as a point of entry to investigate identity. This book has opened my eyes to a truly detailed and rich history of weaving in Canada. As I move forward with my work I continue to consider ‘home’ as a key to my own identity and influence in my handwoven work. 

Rael

Beauty in Simplicity

I have been trying to develop my hand sewing further into ideas for garments. My interest in slow cloth and slow fashion .After studying fashion design my interest in garment making never completely left. Though I often find myself caught up in the negativity surrounding the fashion industry due to its negative social and environmental impacts, dosage  I now see clothing as having great potential for growth and development. Clothing is a necessity, and it can impact every home and every person. My love of handsewn garments and handmade cloth is driven by choice to slow down, to meditate, and to appreciate beauty in simplicity.

These feelings I have towards cloth and fashion are the inspiration for my a few of my final pieces that will incorporate small stencils and applique on linen tunics. There will be more about this project soon.

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Stenciled scsrves and samples, indigo dyed.
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Sketching Development for garment series.

Rael

Stencil Making Progress

 

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Rael Lockwood. Bisque slip cast porcelain with lace burnout. 2016.

I have been seduced by clay within the last year and I am constantly looking for connections, stuff possibilities, herbal and relationships to textiles and fibre. I have found that there are many connections in processes,materials. Last year I did some research into slip casting and burning out textiles leaving ghost like fabric impressions (left image).

 

 

 

 

 

I recently found this small group of artists that form Atelier Murmur. Wang Zhuo, Jiang Xinhe, Sun Jinjin work collectively from Hangzhou, China. Their ceramics are who found a clever way to use fabric dying and combine it with slip casting. Instead of traditional glaze application, they dye textiles with mineral pigments then incorporate them right into the slip casting process.  I love the subtle dye-like impressions left from the textiles. The play on soft textile and hard porcelain surfaces is really unique.


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Atelier Murmur. Ceramics and Dying. 2012. Kaolin clay, Yixing black clay, red clay, sand, mineral pigments. Web. 26 Sept. 2016 <http://www.handmadeinhangzhou.com/details.php?id=19&xilieId=39>

 

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 ceramic2

For more info check out:

http://www.ateliermurmur.fr/index.php?/works/ceramics-and-dyeing/

http://www.handmadeinhangzhou.com/details.php?id=19&xilieId=39

-Rael

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The lovely geraniums at Thiels Greenhouses.

A lot of my inspiration has always come from nature. This past summer working in a greenhouse I had the opportunity not only work with plants but also enjoy the beauty nature truly can offer. I have been playing with photos of geraniums and using them as the subjects for katagami stencils this year.

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After steaming the dough for paste
After steaming the dough for paste

My understanding of stencil design and proper execution is still in progress. I am hoping that by committing to it for a full year that I can dramatically improve my skills. There are definite challenges that I recently encountered prepping the nori paste for stenciling. Making nori sounds easy, health
but mixing it takes alot of commitment. Just picture mixing the tackiest glue you can think of until you arms are so tired they want to fall off.

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Dipping in indigo.

Also, about it
when you are working with a tiny vat, pill
you have to get really creative with hangers.

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-Rael

Currently…

This post is an update on one of my projects this semester. I have been documenting the process of preparing yarn for an ikat inspired weaving which will later serve as yardage for a set of cushions and a throw/runner. Here are a few photos showing the first few phases of the work. It’s a been a slow developing piece, approved but so far worth it. Dying yarn for weaving is a serious time investment. I will post more about this project when it is completed.

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Tying Ikat on the warp.
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The lovely and long process of hand washing yarn that has been dyed in indigo.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Threading.
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The weaving so far.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

-Rael

The Practice of Care

Last year I took a huge leap out of my comfort zone and enrolled in 3 ceramic courses at ACAD ceramic courses. At the time I was looking for a challenge, more about I left as if I had become too comfortable in my textile work and was no longer feeling a need to push and develop ideas. I was lucky enough to have Katrina Chaytor as my Introduction to Handbuilding instructor, and Robin Dupont as my Introduction to wheel throwing instructor. I remember my very first throwing class feeling as if I would never be able to move a 1 pound of clay into anything resembling a vessel, but still managed to accept the challenge it presented.

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Katrina Chaytor. Cups and Saucers. Hand-built Earthenware with slip, glazes and iron transfers. Web. 19 Oct 2016.
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Robin Dupont. Soda Fired Plates. 2012. Web. 19 Oct 2016.

What I learned in that semester was not only a multitude of skills and practices that I will carry throughout my life, but also the to practice care. To do the things you care about, to cherish new obstacles as an opportunity to grow as an artist and a person. I think what I learned the most is that the work I care about most is the work that doesn’t sit on a wall in a gallery, it is the work that I get to touch, use and cherish every day. Art can be enjoyed not only intellectually and visual but also physically. As I seek to develop more functional work for the use in the home exemplifying care has become an essential part of my practice.

Visit Katrina’s site here

And Robin’s here

-Rael

Weaving and plant Dying for Luxury Home goods

We all know how difficult it is to produce work that is for sale, public health and keep it marketable and priced at a salable price. It is hard to balance production technique with hand finishing every little detail. I often find myself making work that is either so detail oriented and labour intensive that it is impossible to sell or work or work that I feel I have to make too many compromises on to sell at an appropriate price. Sometimes it is difficult to remember that there is a place for both kinds of work, it’s a matter of choosing, or balancing both.

It is always encouraging to find other artists that have found ways keep the processes and ethical material sourcing as the most integral part of the work. One of my favourite examples is a brand called Matson+Palmer. Christy Maston and Jane Palmer work as a pair in Los Angeles. Jane is a natural dyer and Christy a weaver. Together they create luxury hand-made blankets and pillows. They are able to incorporated hand work at every stage of production in their work which makes their work distinct and beautiful.

They are one of my favourite examples of contemporary makers/designers who are working at a luxury goods price point.

 

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Matson, Christy and Jane Palmer. Blanket. 2016. Plant dyed and hand woven cashmere. Matson+Palmer. Web. 7 Oct. 2016.
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Matson, Christy and Jane Palmer. Pillows. 2016. Plant dyed and hand woven cashmere. Matson+Palmer. Web. 7 Oct. 2016.
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Matson, Christy and Jane Palmer. Pillows. 2016. Plant dyed and hand woven cashmere. Matson+Palmer. Web. 7 Oct. 2016.

For more info visit their site matsonpalmer

or instagram @matsonplamer

-Rael

When Ceramics and Fabric Dying collide

 

farbic10
Rael Lockwood. Bisque slip cast porcelain with lace burnout. 2016.

I was re-introduced to clay last year and fell in love. I am constantly looking for connections, tadalafil possibilities, advice and relationships clay has to textiles and fibre. I have found that there many similarities in processes, help materials, surfaces. Last year I did some research into slip casting and burning out textiles leaving ghost like fabric impressions (left image).

I recently found this small group of artists that form Atelier Murmur. Wang Zhuo, Jiang Xinhe, Sun Jinjin work collectively from Hangzhou, China. Their ceramics are who found a clever way to use fabric dying and combine it with slip casting. Instead of traditional glaze application, they dye textiles with mineral pigments then incorporate them right into the slip casting process.  I love the subtle dye-like impressions and fabric texture left behind in the finished ceramic work.


ceramics3
Atelier Murmur. Ceramics and Dying. 2012. Kaolin clay, Yixing black clay, red clay, sand, mineral pigments. Web. 26 Sept. 2016 <http://www.handmadeinhangzhou.com/details.php?id=19&xilieId=39>
ceramic1

 ceramic2

For more info check out:

http://www.ateliermurmur.fr/index.php?/works/ceramics-and-dyeing/

http://www.handmadeinhangzhou.com/details.php?id=19&xilieId=39

-Rael