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Detailed view to Flourish – thrive prosper bloom 2015 from Railway Terrace, Milton. Photography by Christina Waterson.

Flourish references the site context of Milton as a rich point of intensity in the development of Brisbane – from its natural pre-settlement geography of fresh water creeks feeding the Brisbane River, providing fertile hunting and fishing grounds for Aboriginal people, to the early township farms established on the rich alluvial flats. Inspired by the micro structure of plant cellulose, Flourish expresses concepts of growth, mimicking the natural processes of cell division and reproduction while referencing native flora for its colour palette.

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Imagery from my research into Milton’s history and it’s development over time. Of particular interest were the patterns of early land use and how they mirrored some of the micro structures within native and crop species.

The early settlement farms were quickly followed by industry and transport systems and today Milton continues to thrive as a key node for social and commercial exchange. Flourish thus attempts to capture and express the layers of these site relationships.

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Detail of the top of the artwork screen. Photography Christina Waterson.

It’s bespoke composition frames a field’s edge where native flora have re-grown and flourished. The elements that form Flourish’s central composition are part of the family of forms used in the Stellar Collection with TAIT and artwork entitled Celestial Analogue 2014. Flourish’s elements are scaled to the city and have unique details that address the specific screening and ventilation requirements of The Milton building.

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Overall view of Flourish – thrive prosper bloom 2015 from Railway Terrace, Milton. Photography by Christina Waterson.

The interlocking forms gather themselves to intensity in the centre as the work knits and folds in upon itself and into the built form, circulating light, shade, and colour in ever repeating patterns.

Flourish uses dimensional thickness to create a mesmerising surface that responds to view, light and shadow and in this way gives different experiences throughout the day and from distinct vantage points. My fascination with three-dimensional surfaces and patterning is a constant thread that runs through my practice, artworks and product collections.

Flourish – thrive prosper bloom 2015, commissioned by Aveo Group Ltd and Hutchinson Builders for The Milton Residences, is my largest public work realised to date.

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Looking up at part of Flourish – thrive prosper bloom 2015 a major public artwork realised for The Milton residences, Brisbane – Australia. Photography Christina Waterson

Hello there! Yes it’s been a while since I’ve posted to Tracepattern. In 2015 I’ve been super-busy on a number of projects: especially in realising a large scale public artwork entitled Flourish – thrive prosper bloom for The Milton residences. It’s almost complete and I’m so happy to finally share the project with you. More details of what I’ve been up to and, of course, the process of realising such a large scale work.

PS. In the mean time check out all of my latest news and inspiration at my official instagram site. It’s been a big year!

 

My Torbreck Home and Studio of Seven Years. Photography Aidan Murphy.

My Torbreck Home and Studio of Seven Years. Photography Aidan Murphy 2008.

Maybe you’ve noticed I have been extremely quiet of late. I’ve been busy planning, packing and de-cluttering in preparation for moving from my precious Torbreck studio and home of seven years. It was a major undertaking, made more difficult by the success of my creative practice and a very busy 2014. A good problem to have – yes!

I launched my creative business from this studio in 2007. The unique light and outlook at Torbreck has been inspirational. Many of my collections including The Komodo Series 2008; The Bloom Series 2009; Scale Screen 2012; Shadow Set 2012 and Soft Cell 2012/14 were conceived or made as small tentative studies at this special address.

The Komodo Series 2008 by Christina Waterson including (L > R) Study, Solid X-Screen and Plexa Screen 2008. Photography Christina Waterson 2014.

The Komodo Series 2008 by Christina Waterson including (L > R) Poly Woven Study, X-Screen (Solid Edition) and Plexa Screen 2008. Photography Christina Waterson 2014.

Early morning in the studio, April 2014. Photography Christina Waterson 2014.

Early one morning in my Studio, April 2014. Photography Christina Waterson 2014.

2014 Portait Christina Waterson.

A special inspirational place. Me pictured with Fall 2002 and Taking Flight parts 2010. Portrait for 2014.

For me this place represents freedom and escape, light and openness, and I feel many of these aspects are part of the work I conceived and made while residing and working there in the sky. While I am deeply saddened to leave this special place I know an exciting new chapter is just beginning.

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Always home for sunset. Photography Christina Waterson 2014.

A special thank you to Linda, Ty, Alex and David from Torbreck who everyday go above and beyond to make Torbreck a special place to live and enjoy!

 

Fall 2002 Installation Concept for Ivory Street Window Installation in 2005 part of Unleashed 2005, artisan. Illustration by Christina Waterson.

Fall 2002 Concept for Ivory Street Window Installation in 2005 part of Unleashed 2005, artisan. Illustration by Christina Waterson.

Over almost a decade I have enjoyed exhibiting my large-scale installations in artisan’s Ivory Street Window. The space is perfect; it’s protected while being very public; outward looking to Ivory and Brunswick Street and therefore an accessible way to present to people who wouldn’t ordinarily get to engage with my larger scale works. People can appreciate the installations there day and night as they walk, drive or bus by. The space also affords a different understanding of ones work through the light, movement, near and far approach; and the scale of the window space and street itself.

I’ve presented installations in artisan’s Ivory Street Window at key moments in my practice. Here I share with you a snap shot of the three installations undertaken in 2005, 2008 and most recently 2014.

Fall 2002 Detail of Ivory Street Installation 2005. Photography Andrea Higgins for artisan.

Fall 2002 Detail of Ivory Street Installation 2005. Photography Andrea Higgins for artisan.

Fall 2002 was installed in artisan’s Ivory Street Window in 2005 as part of Unleashed exhibition.  Fall’s interlocking stainless steel elements cascade against the surface of the wall with its elements able to be reconfigured into a hanging installation (Rest 2002) and stacked horizontally (Align 2002).

Front View.

Fall 2002 Detail of Ivory Street Installation 2005. Photography Christina Waterson.

Gravity transformed the perfect geometric forms into a scurry of movement and light. The stainless steel elements quivered with slight changes in air flow and their thin edges reflected the smallest presence of light. Street and traffic lights as well as headlights of passing cars were beautifully reflected in the work’s thin stainless steel edges. Fall is now an important part of my personal collection and takes pride of place in my living room.

Plexus 2008 installed in artisan's Ivory Street Window in 2008. Photography by Andrea Higgins for artisan.

Plexus #1 2008 installed in artisan’s Ivory Street Window in 2008. Photography by Andrea Higgins for artisan.

Plexa #1 (Cardboard Prototype) 2008 prested inIvory Street in 2008. Photography Andrea Higgins for artisan.

Plexus #1 (Cardboard Prototype Komodo Series) 2008 hand cut and woven in recycled cardboard. Presented in artisan’s Ivory Street in 2008. Photography Andrea Higgins for artisan.

In 2008 I showcased a preliminary hand cut cardboard prototype of Plexus #1 (Part of the Komodo Series launched later that year at Living Edge, Brisbane). The series includes three-dimensional arrays, weavings and sculptural objects that explore beautiful repetitive, structural forms at a variety of scales.

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Plexus #1 (Cardboard Prototype Komodo Series) 2008 detail showing the space of the window and materiality of the work. Photography Andrea Higgins for artisan.

As people moved past the the window installation they would see ever shifting tessellation between the work and its shadow. Closer inspection revealed the delightful materiality and complexity of the interwoven elements. Over the month Plexus #1 was in artisan’s Ivory Street Window it evolved and grew; with new elements added weekly until it finally filled the window.

Day time street view of Sequence 01 of Soft Cell.

Day time street view of Sequence 01 – Soft Cell (Domestic Bliss Exotic Dream) 2014. Photography Christina Waterson.

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Dusk street view of Sequence 04 – Soft Cell (Domestic Bliss Exotic Dream) 2014. Photography Courtesy of Richard Stride for artisan.

Soft Cell 2014 was installed during May 2014. The installation evolved through five distinct sequences and was a playful and colourful installation of my latest collection and softer direction.

Night Time Street View of Soft Cell (Domestic Bliss Exotic Dream) 2014.

Night time street view of the final sequence of growth – Soft Cell (Domestic Bliss Exotic Dream) 2014. Photography Christina Waterson.

More on this my latest installation – Soft Cell 2014 and the whole collection in a future post! STAY TUNED!

THANK YOU artisan; idea skill product for supporting my work through display and exhibition over the past decade. 

 

 

Colony 2010. Photography Jon Linkins.

Colony 2010. Made in Agathis Australis (New Zealand Kauri or Kauri). Photography Jon Linkins.

After touring Australia for the past year for WOOD: art design architectureColony 2010 came home to Queensland this month and is presently on show at the QUT Art Museum. The Kauri used for Colony 2010 is very old, has passed through many hands and travelled countless miles. In the 1800’s Kauri Pines, tens of thousands of years old were felled in Northern New Zealand and shipped to Australia.

The Making of Colony. Photography Christina Waterson.

This complex work was made possible through working with a highly skilled artisan based near Mapleton, Queensland. His knowledge of making and respect for the wood is evident in the final piece. The precious wood was used as efficiently as possible. Photography Christina Waterson.

This timber was used for bridges, boats and storage vats because of its strength and natural resistance to rot. During this time the Kauri used in Colony 2010 was shipped to Sydney and made into rum vats for the Pyrmont distillery that began operation in the 1890’s. In the early 1990’s the distillery was closed and the Kauri staves from the vats were salvaged.

I grew up in Bundaberg (Queensland) where sugar and rum production were the main industries. Large Bundaberg rum vats similar to those at Pyrmont Distillery. Photo courtesy of Bundaberg Rum.

I grew up in Bundaberg (Queensland) where sugar and rum production were the main industries. Pictured here are large Bundaberg rum vats similar to those from the Pyrmont Distillery. Photo courtesy of Bundaberg Rum Ltd.

Traces of the timber’s previous use have been kept in Colony 2010. Some panels still have the rum visible in their surface: appearing as darker lines and shades. The rum soaked staves wafted of rum as they were machined. Colony 2010 is an experiment. It is a lesson in what not to do with wood. The wood staves have been cut to reveal the patterned end grain of the Kauri to show the age of the original tree. While the timber is very old and stable this type of cutting and tapering has really pushed the material to its limit.

Colony 2010 (Detail). Photography Jon Linkins.

Colony 2010 (Detail). Photography Jon Linkins.

The finite nature of Kauri Pine: the tree and the wood, have informed the work’s arrangement. Colony 2010 is made up of like, repeated parts grouped together for strength, protection and support. At the edges is where the work is vulnerable but also where it is most likely to grow, multiply and seek out new ground.

Colony 2010. Photography Jon Linkins.

Colony 2010 silhouette. The edge holds the greatest potential for growth or vulnerability. Photography Jon Linkins.

At the edges of society, culture and thinking this dichotomy also exists. At these edges creative endeavours, new ideas and ways of thinking push forward into unknown territory or pull back to safer ground. At the edge there is the potential to succeed and grow, or risk everything, fail and retreat. Colony 2010 holds true to this condition by pushing material, form and ideas of function. Its existence is a result of pure belief and a will to strive for something more. Seeing this work again reminded me just how lucky I am to still be on this journey, despite all odds.

WOOD: art design architecture is on show at the QUT Art Museum until 29 June 2014. Check out there website for public programmes, events and workshops related to wood (the material and the exhibition). WOOD: art design architecture resulted from a collaboration between JamFactory Contemporary Craft and Design and Botanic Gardens of Adelaide, where it was presented in February through early April 2013, with the exhibition continuing its national tour throughout 2013 and 2014. Take a closer look at my review of the original exhibition here.

 

 

 

 

 

WOOD: art design architecture exhibition view at Jam Factory Contemporary Craft and Design. Photography by Christina Waterson.

WOOD: art design architecture exhibition view at Jam Factory Contemporary Craft and Design. Photography by Christina Waterson.

The national touring exhibition WOOD: art design architecture opened in Brisbane at the QUT Art Museum last week. I thought I would share with you my review of the exhibition written originally for ArchitectureAU online on the occasion of the exhibition first opening at JamFactory Contemporary Craft and Design, in February 2013. And so not to ruin the experience of seeing the work in QUT’s generous sequence of exhibition spaces, I have only included photos of the original JamFactory installation that accompanied the text below. Enjoy!

Greer Honeywill’s This housing estate is not to scale #2 (foreground) and Boot Lace by Sherrie Knipe with Colony by Christina Waterson, behind. Photography by Christina Waterson.

Greer Honeywill’s This housing estate is not to scale #2 (foreground) and Boot Lace by Sherrie Knipe with Colony by Christina Waterson, behind. Photography by Christina Waterson.

WOOD: art design architecture celebrates our long relationship with wood and presents its diverse properties and qualities, along with the multiplicity of ways it can be worked. The exhibition includes work from twenty-eight Australian exhibitors who either work directly with wood, or with skilled crafts-people. The pieces relate to each other on several levels to form an overall vision for the exhibition based on figure and form; pushing material limits; craftsmanship and our eternal connection to wood – through place, nature, use and memory.

Interior and architectural projects are part of the showing. These are often difficult to appreciate in an exhibition context without directly experiencing the made place in real-time, but each project is presented in a distinct way to give an insight not available in the experience of the actual project.

Brian Hooper and m3architecture’s Tree of Knowledge Memorial 2009 is presented through a single key image alongside one of the recycled hardwood elements used to reinstate the aura around the remains of the Tree of Knowledge. This allows an intimate experience of these elements (that hang out of reach in the actual project) and thus enables an appreciation of the hardwood’s age, materiality and previous life as telephone and electrical poles. A simple scale model of March Studio’s Baker D. Chirico on the other hand emphasises the contour like nature of its interior plywood ceiling and wall strata.

John Wardle Architects’ Jewellery Box with form studies of the Shearers Quarters project. Photography by Christina Waterson.

Small massing and form models of John Wardle Architect’s Shearer’s Quarters project are displayed in an elegant spruce jewellery box with sliding drawer. The Jewellery Box is crafted with the same care and attention to detail as the office’s architectural projects and represents a key part of the practice – the relationships formed with highly skilled craftsman to achieve complex architectural ideas. The fruit of these key relationships is found in the joyful and intimate experiences that punctuate life lived in and around this practice’s buildings.

Piti, 2012 by Billy and Lulu Cooley uses river red gum burnt with design, displayed alongside Clipped Wing Bench in Tasmanian Blackwood by Simon Ancher. Photography by Christina Waterson.

Piti, 2012 by Billy and Lulu Cooley uses river red gum burnt with design, displayed alongside Clipped Wing Bench in Tasmanian Blackwood by Simon Ancher. Photography by Christina Waterson.

Hossein Valamanesh’s Breathe 2012, bronze cast from assembled twigs and branches, celebrates the life-giving force of nature, forests and trees. Architect Drew Heath’s spaces are warmed by light that has been warmed by wood’s hue. Developed within the experimental confines of his own home, Heath’s light lintels (on display) and layered ceilings incorporate marine plywood to warm our modern-day fluorescents.

Amore mio chair in American black walnut by Jon Goulder with Tom Miram’s The Memory Keeper, 2012 (background). Photography by Christina Waterson.

Amore mio chair in American black walnut by Jon Goulder with Tom Miram’s The Memory Keeper, 2012 (background). Photography by Christina Waterson.

Tom Miram’s The Memory Keeper 2012 is made from the trunk of a fallen coastal grey box, and marks his connection to the place of his childhood, and the history of change along its river valley. Other works show the process of realising work in wood.

Requiem (spirit of the beehive) by Lionel Bawden (right) with Greer Honeywill’s This housing estate is not to scale #2 (left) and Plantation Chair by Alexander Lotersztain, behind. Photography by Christina Waterson.

Requiem (spirit of the beehive) by Lionel Bawden (right) with Greer Honeywill’s This housing estate is not to scale #2 (left) and Plantation Chair by Alexander Lotersztain (behind). Photography by Christina Waterson.

Alexander Lotersztain’s marine plywood Plantation Chair prototype (a step to the final design with adjustment marks and cuts) is displayed beside a standard plywood sheet nested with the assembly elements of four Plantation Chairs and accompanying Eggcups. Sherrie Knipe’s patterned Boot Lace and John Quan’s incredibly thin Flexible Desk Lamp push timber veneer to its limits, while offering playful outcomes.

Visitors appreciate the detailed pattern in Boot Lace by Sherrie Knipe. Photography Christina Waterson.

Visitors appreciate the detailed pattern in Boot Lace by Sherrie Knipe. Photography Christina Waterson.

Brief 2012 (my favourite work in the exhibition) by Damien Wright, is a large dining table made using ancient petrified Red Gum and Ringed Gidgee. Its honesty, logic and refinement exemplifies Wright’s adept skill and the unique techniques he has developed to form these hard to work timbers. The undulating drawer fronts of Khai Liew Julian Chest 2011 invite touch and use to appreciate the solid American black walnut. It is made with care and exactitude and will age gracefully over generations to come.

Up close with Khai Liew’s Julian Chest 2011, solid American black walnut with patinated copper inlay. Photography by Christina Waterson.

Up close with Khai Liew’s Julian Chest 2011, solid American black walnut with patinated copper inlay. Photography by Christina Waterson.

Throughout my visit to this exhibition, I felt a strong desire to touch the works – to get up close, to see the grain and smell the scent of the woods used. Our long, close up and personal relationship with wood is kindled by this heart-felt exhibition and beautiful accompanying publication. Wood is warm to touch, alive and ever-changing and continues to find a place within our lives and memories.

WOOD: art design architecture resulted from a collaboration between JamFactory Contemporary Craft and Design and Botanic Gardens of Adelaide, where it was presented in February through early April 2013 with the exhibition continuing its national tour throughout 2013 and 2014. The exhibition at QUT Art Museum continues until 29 June 2014. See their website for details.

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.

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Detail from the right side approach. Photography Christina Waterson.

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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.