I have experimented with glitter, gold and silver leaf and stitching to make my crosses interesting. For my final piece I have decided to use silver leaf because gold leaf is often used for halos and in churches but I felt that silver tied in with my black and white theme better than gold. I have chosen to use only black ink on white paper rather than more colours because I feel that black and white are a powerful contrasting combination. The black represents the darkness of the subject of the death penalty where as the white is the hope that Amnesty International offer. The silver leaf represents the lives that are on death row, the lives we are taking into our own hands when it is not our place.
I used black ink on white paper to create my crosses. I used a technique where I applied the ink then washed it off to make the images more interesting. For others I first wet the paper then applied the ink so that it spread to show the lack of control; we should not try to control life and death.
I chose crosses as a subject to engage with the audience. The exhibition is going to be in a church and I felt that it is likely religious people will visit as it is held in a church, personally I would feel uncomfortable visiting an exhibition in a church as I would feel uncomfortable going into a church. I chose to focus on amnesty internationals work on abolishing the death penalty and after looking into the subject I chose to focus on the cross as asymbol because it ties in with the death penalty as it was a form of capital punishment and it hopefully should engage with my audience as it is a religious symbol. I hope to show that the death penalty is an outdated method of puishment just as much as crucifixion is.
In previous units I have worked on top of book pages for various reasons. In unit 4 I printed photographs onto bible pages because the subject of the photographs was a church, I then bound these pages to make a new book. In The Collection I focused the unit on my favourite books so I chose quotes from the books and worked on top of pages from the books. It had not occured to me to use book pages in this unit until I visited Jake and Dinos Chapman’s Come and See exhibition. The Disease Within The Disease is a series of 100 watercolour and ink drawings on book pages. I experimented with drawing crosses on book pages with a view to turning them into a final piece simialr to the Chapman brothers work. I used pages from Stephen King’s Carrie to try my ideas. I was pleased with the outcome however I had trouble deciding on which book would be most appropriate to work on top of. It was nearing the deadline and I did not know any books about the death penalty, I even visited a massive second hand book store and looked into the crime and politics section. I could not find anything appropriate and considered using bible pages again but decided against it as we intend to exhibit in a church and although I need to engage with the audience I would prefer if I engaged them with my message against the death penalty and promoting amnesty international.
The Right to Childhood Should be Protected.
The photo concepts show both direct and indirect violence against children, via religion, military occupation, healthcare, school shootings, nuclear disasters, sexual tourism (trafficking), and corporate food.
I originally came across these photographs on tumblr. The crucifix symbolism is what initially drew me to them as I am exploring the cross for my project however when I noticed the comments people had made I began to understand the meaning behind the photographs.
The children’s faces are pixelated which I think makes the photographs more powerful because it is not just individual cases, Ravelo is making a statement about society as a whole. Children are being crucified on crosses; the cross of obesity and the cross of sexual abuse and he is bringing it to our attention. As it says on his website with these images: The right to childhood should be protected.
Pen and ink (brown), watercolour (brown and grey), wash on paper
Height: 10.6 cm; Width: 13.8 cm
This piece stood out to me because of the way it is draw and the muted colours. I really like how detailed the drawing is and I feel that the browns and greys used aren’t over powering and let the subject speak. For my own final piece I plan to keep the colours simple, black ink on white paper, because I want people to pay attention to the subect in order to convey my message.
I found a tumblr post of an image of a neon cross with the words ‘each man creates his own god for himself his own heaven his own hell’ with no other information. After a quick google search I found a website where the crucifix is for sale.
‘Each Man Creates His own God’ Neon Sign
Description: A neon crucifix created from words by Edgar Allan Poe. Traditional neon mounted onto black stained salvage timber with transformors and cables concealed behind.
Dimension: 225cm high and 152cm wide
Fixings: Wall mounted
Price: £6000 inc. VAT (excluding installation)
I went on to explore the website further and came across another item I felt linked into the subject I am exploring for this unit.
Hangman Noose – Neon
Description: Hangman Noose in blue neon with mirror polish stainless steel support
Dimension: 140cm high
Fixings: Ceiling or wire mounted
Price: £3500 inc. VAT (excluding installation)
These pieces reminded me of Susie Henderson’s Execution series of neon pieces. I think that neon is an interesting material because it grabs attention as we are so used to it being used for advertising and execution as a subject is quite dark and gruesome but the brightness of the neon contrasts this and almost offers hope.
Morning Star, 2008 (Anodised aluminium, silicon rubber cord, wax work figure, feathers, aluminium, concrete)
Dimensions Variable (approx 4100mm x 6000mm x 7000mm)
Photographs Tessa Angus
I originally found this piece from a post on tumblr. The scale and the subject of the piece grabbed my attention first; I adore large scale artwork that creates an impact and along with the subject this piece is powerful. Morning Star has religious links which I felt was appropriate for my work as I am looking into Christianity. This piece is memorable and while my own final piece will not be haunting I hope I can create an impact on the audience.
I went to Paul Fryer’s wesite and found more of his work from the same year which also caught me eye. In theory we learnt that The Pieta is a subject in Christian art that depicts the Virgin Mary cradling Jesus’ body. I found it interesting that Fryer has placed Jesus in a chair rather than in the Virgin Mary’s arms.
Pieta (bronze study) 2008 (wooden chair, bronze figure)
475mm 362mm x 241mm
Photograph by Tessa Angus