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Monthly Archives: March 2014

The Escape for One Can, artisan.

The Escape for One Can at artisan: idea skill product. Photography by Christina Waterson.

I’d been given the task by Quench to create a work for the One Can exhibition. Each artist, designer or architect in the exhibition had to make a functional/sculptural/fun object from one standard sized drinking can. While I am well-known for my labour intensive artworks and designs, I decided to make it fun and keep it simple (short and sweet) as I’d spent the last few months burning the midnight oil on other projects that were both mentally and physically challenging. My work for One Can is entitled The Escape.

‘The Escape’ conjures a childhood delight of simple things. As a child I remember long and extremely hot summers where we’d often put soft drinks in the freezer to get them to a perfect slush puppy consistency. Sometimes forgotten, the cans would explode causing a mess. I imagined the cans exploded because the fairies that made the drinks’ bubble were escaping. ‘Sprite’ especially reinforced this because not only was it a drink it was also a word that described a fairy, pixie, elf or imp. ‘The Escape’ captures the moment immediately after the sprite has made its escape from the can. Christina Waterson March 2014

Other practitioners that have made work for the exhibition include Neil Davidson, Matt Dabrowski, Earl of Lunchington, Arkhefield, Damian Thompson, Matt Emerson, Pippin Blackwell, Paul Fairweather, Linsey Rendell, Shane Thompson, Nick Flutter and Michael Lineburg. One Can is on display at artisan in Fortitude Valley, Brisbane until 27 April 2014.

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In this the second instalment of From the Vault I’ve really dug deep and gone back to the early days; showing the diversity and richness of my practice. I’ve sifted through Polaroids, black and white negs, Kodak prints and drawings. Once again the process has been positively affirming. I have included a few descriptions for the harder to place projects and works. Enjoy!

House for Bachelard. Design, drawings and photography by Christina Waterson 1994.

House for Bachelard (1994). Design, models, drawings and photography by Christina Waterson 1994.

This exploratory project, House for Bachelard, was designed while studying Architecture at The University of Queensland in 1994. The 2nd Year Architectural Design Studio was run by Professor John Hockings.

PART 01: ABSTRACTIONS OF HOUSE. On reading The Poetics of Space by Gaston Bachelard, students were asked to communicate its essential concepts via a maquette (concepts such as curved space, corner/huddle, and progression between polar states etc) Through an intensive model making process I explored ‘hidden space’ and tried to capture the feeling of the spaces described in The Poetics of Space. Then in a series of exercises involving the abstraction, duplication and repetition of our original concept model we were challenged to consider the qualities of spaces revealed by this process and match them to the prescribed areas of a brief. The brief was for a weekend house for the author Bachelard.

Abstractions of House study model 1994. Photography by Christina Waterson.

Abstractions of House – Study Model 1 (1994). Photography by Christina Waterson 1994.

Abstractions of House - Study Model 2 (1994). Photography by Christina Waterson 1994.

Abstractions of House – Study Model 2 (1994). Photography by Christina Waterson 1994.

PART 02: HOUSE FOR BACHELARD. My proposition for his ‘house’ was a camp-like structure providing basic necessities for Bachelard’s weekend stays. It was nestled within the landscape of Point Lookout and orientated to minimize oncoming winds. The long landscape wall allowed Gaston to survey the coming weather. It shielded his vegetable garden from the strong winds. The bookshelf was considered as a large ladder that stretched from the cellar, through the reading room and up to Bachelard’s sunny sleeping cone. The cellar lay within the earth and provided a dark cool retreat.

House for Bachelard  - Sectional Project Model (1994). The model was 1.8 meters in length. Photography by Christina Waterson 1994.

House for Bachelard – Sectional Project Model (1994). The model was 1.8 meters in length. The middle and bottom photos are taken from the same view but one shows the ground plane intact while the other reveals in section the cellar below. Photography by Christina Waterson 1994.

Peter Light 2000. Lighting commission for Elision Ensemble's practice space. Photography Christina Waterson 2000.

Peter Light 2000 lighting commission for Elision Ensemble’s practice space, South Brisbane. Photography Christina Waterson 2000.

Raku Test Patterns 2001

Raku Test Patterns 2001. Made during a Ceramic’s Elective while studying Visual Arts at the Queensland University of Technology in 2001. Photography by Christina Waterson.

Ceramic Family of Vessels 2001. For a Ceramic's Elective while studying Visual Arts at the Queensland University of Technology 2001.

Ceramic Family of Vessels 2001. For a Ceramic’s Elective while studying Visual Arts at the Queensland University of Technology in 2001. Photography by Christina Waterson.

Array Study 1 (2007). Polypropylene. Photography David Sandison.

Array Study 01 (2007). Veneer. Photography David Sandison.

Array Study 2 (2007). Polypropylene. Photography David Sandison.

Array Study 02 (2007). Polypropylene. Photography David Sandison.

Fuzzy Dub the concept for reloved Designer stories at the Sysney Powehouse 2010.

Fuzzy Dub (2010) the concept for my reloved – designer stories  piece at the Sydney Powehouse. Concept and drawing by Christina Waterson 2010.

“Once desired and loved but eventually discarded, the essential furniture item – the chair – has a long, rich and often poignant past… Contemporary design and bespoke beauty merge to transform a tired furniture piece into a work of art.” Brief by Sydney Powerhouse 2010.

Find a chair, relove it and tell a story. My response to this brief explored the origins of my own creative spark. The first chairs I distinctly remember were our school chairs and at that time I was heavily into craft especially making pom poms. I playfully combined these two memories together to make Fuzzy Dub for the exhibition. By taking two discarded and outgrown school chairs and binding them with recycled materials (including fishing nets and fabric strips) they were reused to make a large-scale pom pom. The exhibition was held at Sydney Powerhouse as part of the 2010 Sydney Design Festival. It included reloved chairs by Andrew Simpson (Industrial Design), Liesl Hazelton (Jewellery), and Adam Goodrum (Industrial Design).

Fuzzy Dub the process, 2010. Photography by Jon Linkins.

Fuzzy Dub the process (2010). Photography by Jon Linkins.

My finished Fuzzy Dub, 2010. Every time I looked at it it made me laugh! Photography by Jon Linkins.

My complete Fuzzy Dub (2010). Every time I look at Fuzzy Dub it makes me laugh! Pretty fun and out there! Photography by Jon Linkins.

 All works by Christina Waterson. If you would like to check out From the Vault 01, the previous post in this series, click on this link.

 

Tracemetal 2014

Tracemetal 2014. Photography Christina Waterson.

I am excited to announce the launch of TRACEMETAL – a special edition of Tracelet made in stainless steel infused with bronze.

TRACEMETAL’s unique form originates from a set of sculptural studies that extend my woven Komodo Series, released in 2008. Its faceted surface was made by imagining a draped soft material or skin over the bones of these original weavings. These were ‘traced’ and drawn at a bracelet scale, though could be realised at multiple scales and have different functions. Using the latest in 3D technology TRACEMETAL was then made in the Netherlands.

TRACEMETAL’s different colours Umber, Flint and Bronze are achieved through patinas applied to the surface of each bracelet.

Tracemetal 2014

Tracemetal 2014. Photography Christina Waterson.

Tracemetal 2014. Photography Christina Waterson.

Tracemetal 2014 Detail. Clockwise from left to right – Tracemetal colours Bronze, Flint and Umber. Photography Christina Waterson.

While Tracelet can only be personally given to people I meet, the special edition bracelet TRACEMETAL is available for purchase exclusively in Queensland through the inspirational fashion designer and creative force Gail Sorronda, at Gail Sorronda Concept Store, James St Fortitude Valley.

Stay tuned for special exclusive stockists near you!

Tracelet (Limited 777) Editions 1 (Salmon - Lemon Aqua) and 2 (Scarlet - Vanilla - Baby Blue) released in 2012.

Tracelet (Limited 777) Editions 1 (Salmon – Lemon – Aqua) and 2 (Scarlet – Vanilla – Baby Blue) released in 2012.

With some exciting news to be announced in regards to Tracelet this week I thought I would REPOST about the Tracelet Project.

It’s been just over a year since the Tracelet Project (777 Limited) was launched at Brisbane’s Saturday in Design 2012 (SID). Over that time two colour editions have been released and I have personally given more than 700 Tracelet sets to people in Brisbane, Sydney, Melbourne, London, Hong Kong and Singapore.

That’s a lot when you think each time I give a set I also share the story behind the inspiration, the maker and the process. Tracelet can only be given in this way.

Sharing the story of the Tracelet Project at SID Melbourne 2012.

Sharing the story of the Tracelet Project at SID Melbourne 2012. Photo James Braund.

Something quite magical happens each time. Tracelet ceases to be a bracelet made of Injection moulded food grade plastic and instead becomes a talisman about the gift of sharing knowledge.

Tracelet has travelled all across the globe and found homes with inspired individuals. Sometimes they run into each other while wearing Tracelet and say ‘You must have met Christina!’. Such beautiful stories keep flowing in from all over the world.

Beautiful messages, images and thank yous continue to keep me inspired!

Beautiful messages, images and thank yous continue to keep me inspired!

I have received hundreds of thank you emails accompanied by images of people loving their Tracelets; wearing them for special events or in their everyday, or finding new ways to use them (drawing patterns or playing with them as earrings and crowns).

Thank you and stay tuned!

Celestial Analogue (Stellar) 2013 - 14. Recycled cardboard and Pigment Paint.

Celestial Analogue (Stellar) 2013 – 14 (recycled cardboard, pigment paint). Photography Christina Waterson.

My latest work, Celestial Analogue, records the ideal geometry of an immeasurable physical experience.

While recently hosting some visiting international friends who had never experienced a clear view of the night sky I rediscovered my own deep memories of the Milky Way. My friends normally live in London where the Milky Way has not been visible since the Industrial Revolution; due to pollution and compounded by big city light spill. Growing up in rural Queensland with a glorious view of the Milky Way I had perhaps taken this familiar sight for granted.

On attempting to explain something so unimaginable, immense and elusive as the Milky Way to my friends who had never witnessed it directly, I realised that it was nigh impossible to communicate the experience. Even images fell short. A visit to a remote location was undertaken to let them experience it directly for themselves.

Detail

Detail from the right side approach. Photography Christina Waterson.

Detail

Zooming into the detail – so close yet so far away. Photography Christina Waterson.

Celestial Analogue emerged from these encounters. Though also very beautiful Celestial Analogue is an ideal representation of this immeasurable physical experience. Repetition of the reduced elements create a sense of movement across the work’s surface. With an ever shifting pattern and spatial rhythm it remains illusive when experienced from different moments and positions.

The Process.

Pieces patiently masked, painted, scribed and cut. Photography Christina Waterson.

Celestial Analogue was patiently assembled from hand cut, painted and folded recycled cardboard. It meaningfully extends my previous collections of work including The Bloom Series 2009, Taking Flight 2010 and Scale Screen 2012.

Celestial Analogue Detail.

Celestial Analogue (Stellar) 2013- 14 view from the left side approach. Photography Christina Waterson.

PS I must admit it was hard to photograph this work in the exhibition space. With every passing car reflected light rays created hot spots and cool spots across the work. I endeavour to return one night and re-photograph the work more evenly lit.

Chain reactions open at artisan: idea skill product in Fortitude Valley, Brisbane.

Chain Reaction opens at artisan: idea skill product in Fortitude Valley, Brisbane. Photography Christina Waterson.

The Chain Reaction opening was a fantastic gathering of diverse creative practitioners and excited guests. It was absolutely jam-packed with people and abuzz with a fabulous energy.

Anna and Elie Moubarouk with Her Honour the Governess of Queensland Penelope Winslet.

The beautiful Emma and Elie Moubarak with the Governor of Queensland, Ms Penelope Wensley AC. Photography Christina Waterson.

Before the formal proceedings three artists within one of the branches of the chain gave artist talks. They included Christina Waterson (artist and designer), Abe Muriata (painter and potter, traditional rainforest shield maker and self-taught weaver) and Brian Robinson (multi-skilled contemporary artist, whose practice includes painting, printmaking, sculpture and design). Here I share with you my introduction to Abe Muriata:

Elie Moubarak rang me out of the blue to let me know he’d nominated me for the Chain Reaction exhibition. It made my day – in fact it made my month! Thank you Elie. When he rang I was actually meticulously cutting up and painting hundreds of pieces of cardboard, and assembling them into my work Celestial Analogue.

Elie is a talented individual (Gerard’s Bistro, Laruche and Lychee Lounge; designer, maker and engineer) who brings other talented and unique people together through his diverse projects. Chain Reaction is one of those exciting projects.

It was lovely to speak with Elie. I got to hear about the interesting things he’d been working on and I shared mine. So often practitioners work away in their studios and don’t get the chance to hear how their work affects people or what other practitioners are up to. Chain Reaction opened up those lines of communication.

Making my choices of who I was going to nominate in the chain was easy. I followed my gut instinct. Ringing them was the hard thing. I had such respect for my selected practitioners, so was pretty nervous about calling them out of the blue.

I first developed a love of Bi-cornial baskets when I worked on the Story Place exhibition at the Queensland Art Gallery in 2003. Bi-cornial baskets or Jawans are traditionally woven by women. Abe is the only man to weave them and he brings exceptional skill, precision and material sensitivity to each of his works.

When I rang Abe Muriata and told him how much I respected him and his work  I cried – mainly because I was sharing quite personal thoughts on how I’ve loved living with one of his works for the past 10 years. Thank you Abe.

I wondered why I hadn’t gotten in touch before – why I hadn’t sent an email or called Abe or the Girrigun Aboriginal Arts Centre to let him know.

I would like to sincerely thank the team at artisan for envisioning Chain Reaction and opening up those lines of communication. I look forward to meeting all of the Chain Reaction creative practitioners and hearing about their inspirational works and links.

Thank you!

Christina Waterson, Chain Reaction Opening, 20 February 2013

Barbara Heath and Malcolm Enright's exquisite work.

Barbara Heath and Malcolm Enright’s exquisite work. Photography Christina Waterson.

Opening up lines of communication.

Open lines of communication. Photography Christina Waterson.

I loved meeting Chain Reaction creatives Abe Muriata, Emily Murray, Brian Robinson, Rebecca Ward and Remo Vallance.

I regret I didn’t meet every Chain Reaction artist on the night. I have made it my personal mission to get in touch with each of them to say hello!