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Saturday, 30 June 2007

twist vessel

This is Twist Vessel by Matthew Chambers, from the exhibition True to Form at the Grace Barrand Design Centre in Nutfield, Surrey.  On his website, Matthew describes his vessel sculptures as follows:

Sculptural vessel forms best viewed from above. The pattern on each piece carries from the top inside the form. All works are made from coloured stoneware clay and are constructed using sections thrown on the potters wheel. Each piece is high fired and polished and the work ranges from 15 - 30cm in width and from 10 - 35cm in height

Matthew’s personal statement on his CV states:

I am influenced by geometric and constructivist art, architecture, and design. I use these interests in abstract to explore shape and form by building constructed sculptures in clay. The aim on completion is that each individual piece will convey unique properties of space, light, and colour, and will sustain an expression of abstract and rhythmical beauty from the pattern of the shapes within.

I think he is only partially successful in meeting his stated objective, as there is an element of uniformity across his pieces. The exhibition ends tomorrow, and this particular piece will set you back £300.

Posted by bigblue on 30/06/2007 at 11:24 PM
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Thursday, 28 June 2007
True to form

Lime wood vessels

These are some of 100 vessels, found at the Grace Barrand Design Centre over the weekend. These works are an extract of a larger exhibition by Cotswold artists Malcolm Martin and Gaynor Dowling which Grace Barrand variously calls 1000 Pieces and 1000 Openings.  The Grace Barrand exhibition of which they now form part is known as True to Form, and includes ceramic works and textile wall hangings.

Limewood is a common material for wood carving, also known as Linden or Basswood of the genus Tilia.  The Wikipedia article gives some interesting background about the tree, including its mythological connections, although this article is badly structured and provides unsatisfactory information in many respects (e.g. it is weak on the Slavic cultural and spiritual connections).  The wood is also used to manufacture instruments, such as guitars.

Additional link: EURIS project article on sourcing Limewood in Slovakia.

Posted by bigblue on 28/06/2007 at 08:08 AM
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Wednesday, 27 June 2007
Paris - the series

La Defence

Last night I watched the first episode of Sandrine Voillet’s Paris.  A fascinating study of this lovely city, although it jumps around a bit.  The BBC has an interview with Sandrine Voillet, who is an art historian.

Posted by bigblue on 27/06/2007 at 07:35 AM
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Tuesday, 26 June 2007
Robert Pendered

Robert Pendered

This is Robert Pendered, a local artist based in Bletchingley, Surrey, seen here working on the painting which he described to me as “King George V riding a white horse (symbolically) through Wilmington”. He was “on show” at the Grace Barrand Design Centre on Saturday. The painting in the bottom right of the photograph is of stone cottages in Devon or Cornwall, but many of his other paintings show a famous white horse carved into chalk downs, and cloud formations which echo these shapes. I think I confused him by asking him about Wilmington because this is the site of the Long Man carving, not a horse design.  Robert told me that he has painted his whole life, but has only been able to concentrate fully on his painting since retirement, and he cited David Hockney as an inspiration.

And here’s a photo of crop circles in the Netherlands caused by a high-speed police chase.

Posted by bigblue on 26/06/2007 at 10:10 PM
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Monday, 25 June 2007


It looks like there was an interesting art installation in Oxted recently:

gallery:space presents documentation and remnants from Lee Simmons’ art events that took place at Oxted Quarry and Betchworth land fill site.
The work in the gallery is accompanied by a site specific
installation and colouring event in the park, using material
and techniques from the earlier works.

“A highly visible chalk face was coloured at the recently landfilled Betchworth Quarry with assistance and input from Surrey Fire and Rescue Search and Rescue team who abseiled across the chalk face spreading pink powder as they went. 42 primary coloured sheep, donated by a local farmer, grazed at the foot of the cliff, creating a colour saturated, enhanced landscape.
This performance triggered a discussion whereby local people and invited
guests were reminded by the event unfolding in front of them that the meadow
they were relaxing in was actually a tip, in which the smell of methane gas was present in the air”

Almost makes me want to head up to Finsbury Park to have a look.  Another link with photo.

Posted by bigblue on 25/06/2007 at 11:10 PM
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Sunday, 24 June 2007
Night & Day

Night & Day

I enjoy photographic sequences that show the same place, at different times of the day or year.

The weather has been bad this weekend: typical for Glastonbury weekend. I managed to get out yesterday and take a bunch of photos but haven’t had time to transfer them to my computer yet - was too busy taxi-driving the sprogs around!

Posted by bigblue on 24/06/2007 at 11:13 PM
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Saturday, 23 June 2007


I went to Nandos for lunch with four of my colleagues earlier this week. I quite like their food and Julie showed me how to mix the sauces to get a better flavour. Two of my colleagues are from Malaysia and I discovered that there’s a Nandos in KL.  I was interested in this because Nandos started out as a South African company.

Nando’s is known in South Africa for its humorous but often controversial adverts originally created by Johannesburg advertising agency TBWA Hunt Lascaris. One such television advert from 2000, involved a blind woman being led into a pole intentionally and knocked unconscious by her guide dog, which then proceeded to eat the chicken that the woman had just purchased. This caused an uproar within the blind community and caused the South African Advertising Standards Authority to call for the withdrawal of the advert.

See Wikipedia article here.

The full story of the offensive Nandos advert, states somewhat humorously that:

The Advertising Standards Authority of SA (ASA) said the advertisement proved to be offensive to the blind, but not to guide dogs.

So would the ASA pull an advert that was offensive to dogs? And would a dog have to complain, or (for example) could a concerned person like me complain on behalf of them? I also wonder if the complaint would have been more successful if it was made on behalf of a specific dog rather than guide dogs in general. Because I’m sure guide dogs hold a range of opinions on any given issue.

Posted by bigblue on 23/06/2007 at 10:47 PM
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Friday, 22 June 2007
C’etait Rendevous

This movie, called C’etait Rendevous is a supposedly rare copy of Claude Lelouch driving a Ferrari Daytona through Paris at 5 in the morning.  In actual fact he used a Mercedes 450SEL and added the sound of a Ferrari in the studio afterwards.

Posted by bigblue on 22/06/2007 at 11:34 PM
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