Thursday, November 10, 2011

Have a heart - Installation.

Here are the fruits of my labour for last terms work which looked at the theme of 'intimacy' - through the production of multiple plaster castings - for an installation work on the theme. I know I say this every term but I think this is the hardest I've had to work so far. The process pictures of creating the latex moulds and casting the plaster are below. The first step  - creating the clay positive, which were the hearts themselves, then painting the positives in latex - making sure the 'undercuts' were supported by latex filled cotton wool - nearly did me in. I had the flu at the time and found it all so demanding and finicky (the liquid latex smelt literally toxic) I swore it would be the first and last time I ever made a latex mould. But then when it came to the casting I took my time, just doing one batch of plaster a day, out in the sun, no pressure, and I got excited about what this process can achieve. Making your own mould and then having the option to just reproduce from that opens up a lot of possibilities. 

The liquid latex smelt like the ammonia from a hair salon. It took about six coats to get this thick. It has some stretch but not a lot surprisingly.

Fun plaster casting in the sun - I needed 15 hearts in total.

OH&S photo opportunity.

My installation chose to look at intimacy in the context of a hospital - the concentration of such intense  life events in a single space contrasted with the sanitised lifelessness of the building itself. It helped that the heart is a traditional symbol of intimacy but to represent it as it is - a bloodied, messy organ which sustains life - pushed the metaphor a bit further than that. I've enjoyed playing around with concepts in this course as much as I have the materials themselves. I can't believe I've only got a few more weeks (and still soooo much work) to go. Actually, I can't believe I've made it this far.....