After speaking to Stewart Geddes during the holidays I now want to frame some questions about the project in order to help me focus the final phase and keep in exploratory. Stewart’s feedback led me to think about making the work more ephemeral and fugitive. I also need to work on documentation if my work is to decay and be completely site specific.
If the ‘worker’ is an outmoded term how can I describe the protagonists of these narratives?
They are historical figures from the recent past. I had previously called them the forgotten (los olvidados). I want them to be seen as people who worked in the space. They are now either retired, working in another new industry, dead or unemployed.
How important is the human figure to me? Are there other motifs I could use?
I initially thought of the nests but I am not convinced they are well connected to this project. I had previously thought of the tools used in the workshop. However I am still keeping the figures I feel they are necessary.
The tools could be meaningful or even the furniture. I am thinking about carpenters and blacksmiths.
I have been aiming at figures slightly bigger than real life which has been a challenge. How will changing the scale affect the work?
I wanted them to be bigger than real life as in history paintings. Slightly smaller than life size I felt did not work well. Much smaller figures I could try but I don’t think they would work well. They are not the same as small birds seen unexpectedly in the nomansland in Palestine. The only way I think it could work would be maybe individual figures. However I really wanted to paint the community.Stewart’s idea about making them less obviously seen is good but I think I will try to make them paler or layered.
What materials can I use and leave on this specific site?
There are tyres (tempting to make nests) and also nets which look like fishing nets. There is a lot of building waste – broken bricks, tiles, timber etc. I would like to use materials that are recycled as much as possible and paint and glue. I could experiment with painting using building materials. This I need to investigate.
which verbs could help describe how I would like to make this work?
I would like to use: sticking, dripping, drawing, scraping, removing, covering, filling in, layering, breaking, uniting and joining so far. I want to use a variety of materials, some of which are found and others I bring, possibly started in the studio.
How can I document the work?
I need to use photography but it also occurred to me that the one element of photography I like is the darkroom although I rarely use it. So I could try analogue as well as digital photography (which I need to work on). I also had the idea of making some kind of prints with the work, physically. The last idea which I had today was to collect elements of the work as if I were an archeologist and display them as fragments of a past. maybe that could be a little pompous. I don’t want to give that ‘authority’ rather question it. The idea of taking some souvenirs from the site does strike a chord.