Sending Up Art Talk

Don't think for a minute that I seriously think this is an "art" piece. Suddenly this morning, I though I needed to clarify that. It was my first attempt at an un-usable piece, that's all.

Today, I gave a speech at my Toastmasters Club, based on my experience with this piece. Every word I said was genuine, every process true, and I lived through it just recently, so I remembered the details. Somehow, though, the speech sounded like I was sending up art talk.

I'm in two minds about that, the "art talk". Sometimes I try to listen or read a critique, and there are so many polysyllabic words I'm lost by the middle of the second sentence; sometimes it reads not like a critique of work or artist, but more a catalog of the critic's knowledge or a list of his friends and acquaintances.

But then, when asked about a particular piece, or a particular experience, or a particular process of mine, I can go into quite a long spiel about what I was thinking, how I eliminated alternatives, or how I arrived at the finished product, as I do here. And while my intention is not to impress but to explain, and to take the asker back to relive my process and emotions, I can be just as pompous and boring.

I also had to put into succinct words, and in an orderly fashion, my design process for this particular piece. And though I followed through each step carefully, the finished product seemed less than the sum of all the thoughts that went into the designing.

PS. Without even discussing it with Andy, I just assumed it was going to be hung much higher - perhaps even draping over the rafter. I went to the Refinery to see what width I needed and discussed it a little with Duncan, and I wove this at 8 inches wide on the loom. If I would have known it was going to be a bit lower, I might have woven in a tad narrower. I have my sample piece right beside me now, and I'm amazed how wide it look in the photo.


Anonymous said...

I think it is an art work. Certainly no less of an art piece than other weavign pieces that end up in corporate spaces.

It looks fabulous - the drape looks like it echoes a Fibonacci sequence from that angle as well, which adds to the appeal.

Just wanted to say hi. I'm a fellow weaver, originally from Australia (and once lived in NZ for a number of years) but now in the UK. I found your blog through google and have been following it for a couple of months now.

Meg said...

Thank you for visiting, Tara. I see I'm getting a few more hits on this blog lately, but it's sooooooooo nice to have comments; it makes me feel I'm not just shouting at myself in the big, bad ether.

Say, do you think flames are in? That was what I was thinking with this one, though it could be leaves, or lotus flowers, or....

jb said...

I think it looks excellent as is, Meg. My first thought was the tail of a kite.

Now THERE's a market - hand-woven kites for the Jaffas

Meg said...

Gee, JB, a woolen kite - only in New Zealand, that's for sure.

Anonymous said...

It looks great, any higher and it would have been lost amongst the rafters.
I'm off to Thailand for three weeks so look forward to reading your weaving adventures when I return.

Meg said...

Thanks to the ridiculously low price, (everybody thought it was missing an 0 at the end!!) it sold during the opening. I was kind of taken b surprise that it was so popular. After all this time of talk art vs craft, I have no idea how they saw this as an art piece, rather than a long, coarse scarf. Of course the hanging was well done, and the shapes from under the light looked good.

Speaking to the people who liked it, or other artists, it appears the piece had all the characteristics I tried to include. Whatddya know!!

Anonymous said...

I'm so pleased you sold it! Although I'm sure the low price helped.

Flames may very well be in. Many people told me that they thought that scarf was a lot like a sunset, but others came up with flames. I had three prospective buyers for it before it was even finished, which definitely speaks for its appeal!

I've given you a little information about cashmere on my blog, as well.

Meg said...

Yeah, that was the big talk of the Opening - the cheap price, Tara. Well, not really, but that's the story I'm sticking to.