- Any new work or works in progress to review
- Evidence of your developing exhibition plan, including your press release, e-flyer and any other promotional material.
- A short written self assessment (400-500 words) of your current body of work and your progress for preparing for public exhibition.
- Any other material relevant to your exhibition, for example your revised timetable, provisional budget.
Any new work or works in progress to review
With a much clearer idea about my shows identity, with a focus on the material aspects of making charcoal in connection with my willow, I have continued to experiment with developing my charcoal making and resultant trace drawings. I am also developing my work around Plantation- I have planted new cuttings so I can produce my own source for charcoal making in each of the varieties, and also started to process samples of the 18 varieties into charcoal. My intention is that I will be able to include a selection of the associated trace drawings (I am currently thinking it will be 3), along with the corresponding living willow sculpture and possibly the charcoal sample produced. I have also been exploring frames as a means of protecting these pieces as they are made, given the very delicate nature of their surface. I have framed a piece made- ‘Trace drawing: two spheres’, and it seems to have worked well. I have used a photographic detail from this piece for my promotional material and on my website. I intend to include this piece in my show. I have charted links to the related blog posts below-
- More Charcoal.
- Double Exposure.
- Trace drawing with 2 Spheres.
- Developing Plantation.
- Experimenting further with the charcoal making process.
In addition to my willow/charcoal work, and my decision to perhaps hold back from using my video work in this show I have been really fortunate to have been able to spend some time developing my skills and knowledge relating to the use of digital media through a local project- I have written about in my post- taking opportunities as they come. I have a further artist surgery booked, relating to the use of digital media in my practice, in 2 weeks time. Following the Artlab I feel much more able to target what I want to concentrate on- in particular video editing and the addition of audio, but perhaps also talking about the presentation of moving image work. This opportunity has also afforded me new knowledge and insights, along with the space to reflect more deeply about if this is the way I want my practice to develop. It is an area difficult to totally ignore today, but I definitely feel that is useful to explore just to have a sense of the possibilities, and may be something that would work well in collaboration with someone who has a greater knowledge and skill set relating to the digital side of things.
Evidence of your developing exhibition plan, including your press release, e-flyer and any other promotional material.
It does now feel like things are coming together. I have booked a space, decided on the show identity and have ordered promotional flyers. I have described these in the posts listed below-
- Making a link with a space and booking platform.
- Thinking about an online showcase.
- Thinking about budgets, including pricing out works and artist fees.
- It’s starting to feel more real.
Draft Press Release.
I have written a draft press release. In addition to the guidance in the course book I referred to the piece, ‘For immediate release’, by Bryan on the WeAreOCA blog which proved useful. I have written it out as he describes for you to look at. I have also added a response I got from my sister-in law (a journalist) who I asked to cast an eye over it. She seemed to raise some good points, so I thought it might be useful for you to see, before I make any changes to my original piece.
For immediate release/ or For release on whateverdate.
Artist Sue Gilmore has produced a group of works- painting, drawing and photography, which have come out of a period of exploration of the material properties of willow. Sue will be showing this work in an exhibition, ‘In the Time of Absence’, at For Every Cloud Gallery, Langport from the 1st June to the 11th June.
Sue was born in Somerset, and grew up in a location looking out across the Somerset levels towards Burrow Hill. She has lived in London, Suffolk and Brighton, and has travelled widely, but returned to Somerset in 1995, where she has lived and worked since.
Sue’s early career was in Health Care, but she is now in the final stages of completing a BA (Hons) Degree in Painting with The Open College of the Arts. Drawing and Painting are the focus of her practice, but through her intuitive and experimental approach she has come to explore other media that include photography, video and 3 dimensional work.
‘My current practice has evolved out of spending a period of intensive work in my own garden that included working with willow, whilst exploring ways to develop my practice. This initially involved making drawings that might be worked into paintings, but this interest in Willow has evolved so that the growing and nurturing of my living willow sculptures has become integral to my work.
Working with living material brings with it a direct physical connection to the natural flux’s of nature and concepts like Time, Change and Uncertainty.
I have come to consider there are different phases to my work- a time of presence- when the willow comes to life in spring through to autumn, and –a time of absence- when the leaves drop in autumn through the winter.
My current works have evolved through the discovery that the process- pyrolysis- required to transform Willow to Charcoal requires heat in the absence of oxygen. This connection with absence has made it my chosen media with which to explore- a time of absence. The charcoal used in these works has been made by myself and can be seen as part of the process.’
Reply from Alice.
Sorry for the delay. I read the release straight away and wrote a response but I really wanted to think about it as I changed quite a bit and then I realised what I had done was read your press release and then written an article for a newspaper based on it which wasn’t really the point so I didn’t know what to do then! I think your press release is really well written and it has all the information needed for them to put together an article (seeing as I was able to do one pretty quickly which is what they are looking for). I would say that the information at the bottom of the release needs to have your contact details on so they can call you up to check something, rather than the number of the gallery. Also to rearrange this info so they know if the number is the gallery’s or your number. And, as you said, the website needs to be up to date and with lots of images as I am pretty sure they will do straight on to that. I added that you have attached a high res image of one of your pieces of artwork as that would be very attractive for a journalist as they could stick that in to the what’s on page very easily and then you would get a nice bit of publicity.
I would also put an opening heading as I have done below. I wondered too if it would be good to get in early that you are a local artist and also the fact you make and use your own charcoal is really very interesting and perhaps needs to be higher up, as I have done in the article. I think the press release could be verging on being too in depth about your work – they might need it simplified a bit so they can understand it quickly and not have to re-read it to understand what it is all about. Hopefully I have done that a little in my article but I wouldn’t worry too much and perhaps see what your tutor thinks as I am no expert on art and you have written it well. Also, I added a bit more background about you (did I get it right, mental health nurse and Headway – hope you don’t mind. Of course take it out if you would rather not have it in, or if I have got it wrong!)
Sorry, I hope I am not confusing you by sending over an article. I have never written a press release, I have only read a lot of them and turned them into articles. Do get back to me if you have any questions – it is lovely to be asked for advice even if I am not as helpful as I would have liked!
Really looking forward to seeing your exhibition. Hope you have fun in Bristol.
Lots of love xxx
Here is what I wrote:
For immediate release
Local willow artist holds new exhibition
Somerset-born artist Sue Gilmore is holding an exhibition In the Time of Absence at the For Every Cloud Gallery in Langport from June 1st to 11th. The work, which features paintings, drawings and photography, is inspired by Sue’s own willow structures and uses charcoal she has made herself from pieces of willow.
“My artwork evolved from spending a period of intensive work in my own garden that included working with willow,” said Sue, who lives and works near Chard in Somerset.
“As I grew and nurtured my living willow sculptures, I began exploring different ways to use them in my drawing and painting. Working with living material brings with it a direct physical connection to the natural fluxes of nature and the concepts of time, change and uncertainty. Because of this my work has different phases – a time of presence, when the willow comes to life in spring through to autumn and a time of absence, when the leaves drop in autumn through the winter.”
PICTURE HERE OF ARTWORK
Sue was born in Somerset. She has lived in London, Suffolk and Brighton, and travelled widely before returning to Somerset in 1995, where she has lived and worked since.
Sue’s early career was in healthcare, working as a mental health nurse and for the brain injury charity Headway. She is now in the final stages of completing a BA (Hons) Degree in Painting with The Open College of the Arts. Her main focus is drawing and painting but through her intuitive and experimental approach she has come to explore other media including photography, video and three-dimensional work.
“My current works have evolved through the discovery that the process called pyrolysis which transforms willow to charcoal requires heat in the absence of oxygen. This connection with absence has led me to focus on this concept – a time of absence – and is the inspiration behind the exhibition.”
Sue Gilmore: Exhibition – ‘In the Time of Absence’
1st June – 11th June Wednesday – Friday 9am – 4pm, Saturday 9am – 2pm.
Meet the artist: Saturday 4th June 12 – 2pm
For Every Cloud Gallery, Bow Street, Langport, TA10 9RP, 01458 251475,
For more information, please contact Sue on xxxxxx or by email xxxxx. Website: www.sue-gilmore.com
Please find attached a high resolution image of xxxxx by Sue Gilmore
A short written self assessment (400-500 words) of your current body of work and your progress for preparing for public exhibition.
As I have alluded to above I do now have a sense of things coming together and seeming more real. I have a much better sense of the shows identity which helps in identifying work to develop for the exhibition. It has also helped me feel more comfortable about works that I submitted for assessment for major project, which I have now decided not to present in this exhibition.
So, currently the body of work that I envisage will make up my exhibition include-
- The 11 paintings that make up, ‘That’s just how it is’.
- 6 framed photographs, which document the 3 large trace drawings and 3 relating floor works that I submitted for assessment.
- 2 framed photo-collages- ‘being with willow 1’ and ‘being with willow 2’.
- ‘Trace drawing: two spheres’.
These have been framed and are ready to hang.
As I described above I am working on a series of trace drawing relating to Plantation- I hope to include some of these in the exhibition, probably 3, as when the other work is hung there will be a limitation on space. I would like to show the relating willow sculpture alongside them.
I would also like to include one of my larger willow sculptures into the exhibition if possible, to make that connection between the willow and the charcoal.
My intention, also, is to include at exhibition some of my sketchbooks and some of the artefacts from my experimentation as objects of interest.
Having works that have already been framed and ready to hang has helped me to feel more comfortable about my preparations. I have also received several boxes of A5 flyers which I designed in consultation with the gallery owner. I will start to distribute these at the beginning of April- that’s 8 weeks before the show. I will order business cards when I have sorted out my email address connecting to my website. I have joined SAA in order that I able to meet with insurance requirements relating to the show. With everything in place I have been able to submit details to be included in the listings of the Evolver magazine for their May/June edition- I am really pleased about this as it is specifically an arts magazine that covers virtually the whole South West- Devon, Somerset, Dorset, Wiltshire, including Bristol and Bath. I have also made a list of other local newspapers which I intend to contact.
Any other material relevant to your exhibition, for example your revised timetable, provisional budget.
With a date booked for June it feels a little like things have speeded up, but actually it means I may be able to complete the required assignments in time to be able to submit for assessment in November which would be a year from when Major Project and contextual Studies were assessed. I am, however sending this slightly earlier that your suggested date so you can feedback prior to my making contact with local media for promotional means which I will need to do quite soon. I then image that it may be useful to submit assignment 4 perhaps a week or two before the exhibition, so that you can comment on my final preparations.
Be prepared to send your final set of paintings for exhibition with assignment 4, by what ever means you have agreed with your tutor.
As I have described above the timescale between assignments and exhibition are now becoming limited which would make sending physical work impractical. I will include digital images of the new works with my submission for assignment 4, and hope this is satisfactory.