Friday, March 28, 2008

Candy + Code

The Textile Futures Research Group Salon on 17th March was titled Candy + Code after the work of the first speaker Rachel Beth Egenhoefer.

On the right is part of one of her installations, comprising rows of lollipops inserted directly into a wall (22' x 14'). Due to the high humidity levels at the time the lollipops gradually melted producing an ever changing series of sticky, multicoloured, puddles on the gallery floor.

Candy Residue on paper (left) is another example of her work with sweets (candy) but is rather more commercial in nature.

Rachel Beth is also interested in the representation of codes in her work. Chocolates is an installation of a table with rows of paper cases containing chocolates. The viewers are invited to eat the chocolates and a linked computer monitor shows a realtime display of the full and empty cases as a binary code with the empty cases as 0's and the full ones as 1's.Her current work involves research into the relationship between textiles, technology and the body which she is developing as motion tracking of knitting needles.

Handscape is an installation by Dr Barbara Rauch based on the digital mapping of hands. Her work is primarily concerned with personality and identity and she collaborates with programming specialists to produce digital projections questioning what we are and what we think we are. Examples of her video work can be seen at

Nicola Naismith is concerned with exploring the nature of everyday objects such as work shirts and sewing needles. These objects are investigated, documented and presented offering ambiguous yet familiar images.
Bulk, 2007, is a giclee print 100 x 80cm in a limited edition of 4 plus 1 artist's proof retailing at £750. It shows the eye end of a bulk packet of sewing needles, not a sight that is often seen even by the most ardent needleworkers, especially at this magnification. Other works include video projections of hands threading sewing needles and the relationships between body and computer concentrating on the void between the two.

Saturday, March 1, 2008

Fields of Gold

The mild climate means that spring comes early in Cornwall, the first daffodils are picked in January and by mid February many of the fields are a rich golden yellow. The blooms that are picked to be sold are in tight bud, the ones that are seen flowering in the fields are those that come out after the field has been cropped. Daffodil picking sounds like a wonderfully romantic way to earn a living but the reality is that it's a cold, slimy often wet and utterly miserable process often undertaken by migrant workers.
It's still too early for bluebells but the hedges are fully of Ransoms, wild garlic, which emits its pungent odour if it is crushed.
In the gardens the Camellia's are in full bloom and absolutely stunning, as are the early deep pink Magnolia's.