Posts Tagged 'recycled'

Checking on the sculptues

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It’s summer on the South Devon coast and the 10th year of TRAIL (Teignmouth recycled art in landscape). I enter every year and this year I have made 3 exstinct birds from broken washing machines and old junk. They are (from the left) a Great Aulk, Do Do and Solomon Island Crested Pigeon. Every day we go check on them, make sure they are happy in their roosts and that their solar light eyes still work. My kids have never known any different. An annual ritual as ingrained as leaving a snack for Father Christmas. http://www.trail.org.uk

Aloha Teignmouth!

Aloha Teignmouth Stained Glass Hibiscus flower Having relocated 12 miles from Exeter to South Devon last winter it is amazing to have our first summer in our seaside house!  I am finally back into a good work routine (these things are so dependant on the delicate family/ life balance) and I am preparing for a packed summer of shows and exhibitions!

stained glass hibiscus flower red and yellow paintedThe new house and my exhibition schedule have crossed over in a serendipitous way and I am making some panels which just so happen to be the right size for windows inseaside stained glass our house, so I can install them at home after they have been on tour.  Aloha Teignmouth has been designed for my kitchen door. We live in a 30’s semi with original internal doors and these doors have lovely proportions; but I cannot live with the existing frosted glass and view of the recycling boxes behind (what self respecting glass worker would) so I have made this homage to all things Hawaiian and tropical. This playful panel is intended to liven up our white and black kitchen scheme, obscure the less attractive aspects of modern life from indoors and is a great chance for me to work ‘off brief’. The view of the cliffs and beach huts in the background  of the panel is the view out of the main kitchen window; I do like it when I get to reference the settings of the windows in some way, windows after all are part of the houses architecture.

The outside world keeps on turning and Gloss Gallery summer show is already up and running, which I am pleased to be part of and as the summer holidays grow nearer I am feverishly working on my recycled sculpture for TRAIL 2014 and working towards my first Devon Open Studios in Teignmouth, I will be stained glass door panel 1930ssharing the TAAG gallery with 3 very talented artist friends and we are all working on new pieces for that.

stained glass beach huts detail

Anyway, the sun is shining and recycled washing machines do not turn themselves into sculptures, so I will head out into the Sunday sunshine.

My tree has turned into a monster, but you can still add your wishes to it!

I had to go and take my Wishing Tree down today from its sea front home in Teignmouth as the TRAIL exhibition has ended . I had no idea that it would be so popular and we estimate it has around 2,500 wishes (based on the number of rags we put in the bins) I could not keep up with demand and many thanks to Liz Lockyear, the organiser of the event for endlessly filling the bin for me and to Roger Smith (founders of TAAG ) for mending my sculpture when it got so heavy with wet wishes in the rain that it fell over! TRAIL had to run without funding from anywhere this summer and it is in danger of having to stop running, which seems very sad when the public enjoy the exhibition so much.

Anyway, it really doesn’t look like a tree any more; more like a Fraggle Rock monster! But it is now safely erected in my garden, wishes intact and you are cordially invited to add your own wish to my tree/monster during Devon Open Studios which runs from the 8th – 23rd September.

recycled bath and glass sculpture My Kaleidoboat sculpture (which won TRAIL in 2010) will also be on display and I have moved it to my front garden so people can easily find my house!

The slide show takes you through the wishing tree from the start till now, who knows what will happen to it next!

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An awful lot of wishes

public sculpture on Teignmouth sea front 3 weeks have passed since I erected my sculpture on Teignmouth sea front and look how it has changed!!! I had no idea if anyone would want to join in with my interactive piece, but it turns out that they really, really have! Today’s photo is on the left, 3 weeks ago on the right. See my previous post to see how and why I made it.

Literally hundreds of wishes have been tied to my tree, at least 4 pairs of curtains, an old double duvet cover and goodness knows what else; I am really chuffed that now people have started bringing their own strange trinkets and special bits to add to the tree. Thanks to unknown members of the public who have refilled the bin with scraps of material in between my visits!

There is still plenty of time to add your own wish to my tree, it will be on the sea front till September and if it is still in good shape, back at mine for Open Studios in September.

This sculpture is part of the TRAIL recycled sculpture trail on Teignmouth sea front. We also have an indoor gallery at TAAG in Teignmouth town centre.

2 months is a long time in blog land!

recycled bottle top brooches by Amy McCarthy Wow, my last post was 2 months ago! Where has the time gone?

Some of it has been taken up with joining the writing team at UKHandmade where I am now writing the craft profiles section, which is proving to be great fun, though I hope my outpourings wont be too sporadic for them!

I have also taken on another voluntary role, by joining the board of the Devon Artist Network and its great to be involved with an organisation

kiln fused recycled boat mobiles which has helped me so much in the last couple of years (I received a bursary from them last year).

Things in the world of glass have been moving on nicely too! I have been furiously making boat mobiles and my other recycled seaside wares for Inspirations in Salcombe and Atelier in Barnstaple, who have put in their big summer orders. Summer is a really busy time for me as so much of my work is in galleries by the sea and the summer holidays are galloping towards us now!

A gorgeous local chain of shops Insideout  came to see me and I am working towards a launch type event with them at the end of the month, including some new designs just for them!

All my plans and activity stopped last weekend, our eldest daughter had a virus which made her very poorly and she ended up in hospital, thankfully only for a day. This experience made me especially glad that my work is part of the Devon Artist Network’s  Art and Health Programme at the Royal Devon and Exeter Hospital . This initiative allows artists to display work to brighten up the corridors and waiting rooms of the stained glass panel, seaside landscape local hospital, hopefully bringing a small distraction to the time spent waiting for appointments or news of loved ones.

Baby bird is recovering well and thankfully self employment means I could drop everything to be with my children….but if you dont work you dont get paid! So I have been doing what I can in the house whilst she sleeps and the younger monkey is at nursery and thankfully I managed to deliver all my planned pieces today (which really was the last minute) for  Gloss Gallery Summer Show: Coast and Country which opens Thursday 19th July. Phew!

Now its onto the next project, my submission for the annual recycled sculpture trail in Teignmouth which starts next week, but I have only just started constructing! I was lucky enough to win this a couple of years ago and its a highlight of my working year;  so I have been assembling junk to turn into my new sculpture….more on that soon but for now I need to get back to making it!

Art for Charity’s sake

My Under the Weather sculpture installation had a month or 2 off after its summer on the seafront at Teignmouth as part of the summer TRAIL recycled sculpture exhibition but it is now installed at Exeter Northcott Theatre (Exeter University Campus). The staff were most helpful, especially the Front of House Manager Philip Sowton who had to really stretch his job description 3 metres up a ladder with a large mosaic cloud!

It took me 5 and a half hours but I eventually hung 80 recycled fused glass raindrops from the afore mentioned mosaic cloud; made from an old bit of chip board and small pieces of cloud coloured stained glass and mirror pieces stuck to it.

Each of the raindrops is made entirely from recycled glass; small shards of which I have fashioned together into raindrop shapes and fired in the kiln to fuse them together. The look great hanging in a sunny window, or outside from a tree or garden structure. They are for sale individually for £ 8 with half of the proceeds going to The Helen Foundation, a wonderful local charity committed to supporting young people in the arts through a variety of bursaries and arts involvement schemes. My sculpture is up until the 4th December, so if you are at the university please take a look and you can also see my fellow Devon Artist Network members artwork as the autumn exhibition has been extended till December.

 

Cementing and experimenting

Today has been a real day of 2 halves, lots of cementing my leaded panels which is pretty dirty manual work and a long session of experimenting with recycled glass fusing. I created a couple of little seaside panels, an abstract wavy panel and lots of tiles for the kiln which are cooking away as I type this….we will see tomorrow if they have worked and indeed, if the glass was fully compatible! Pre kiln firing photos below, post firing photos to follow tomorrow

I had 5 visitors today, a mixture of fellow artists, local people and a friend from round the corner, very civilised! Still 2 days left to come and see me if you are in the Exeter area.


 

Open Studios day 5

Had a super dooper double productive day today! I started by cutting 6 small landscape panels and painted the PVA glue resist onto these in preparation for acid etching them tomorrow. I then emptied the kiln from the overnight firing and my painted details for the mermaid panel had come out lovely, I painted the PVA resist on to this panel too, which will be lots of small shoals of fish. I had hoped to get the etching creme on the panels today but the PVA glue had not dried and will have to be left until tomorrow.

I then went on to cut 4 small Winter Village scenes, ready to be painted soon and tried to repair a beautiful teasel panel I have already broken twice and managed to break it again (its like someone is trying to tell me something). I finished off a large winter village scene incorporating painted and fused glass, but my camera is now refusing to focus, so I have no photos of it today!

We had 5 visitors today, which brings us up to 30, please come and say hello if you are in the area, we are open until the 18th September!

Open Studios Day 4

Day 4, second blog post, wonky I know! Anyway yesterday I blogged about how I had cut all the glass for the mermaid window, today I have painted on the details and got it all in the kiln. I use kiln fired glass paints which come in a powder form, you mix them with gum arabic and water to make a paste and then get going. Its a devil to work as it dries to a powder very quickly and then can not be over painted or touched up, you need to make smooth fluid lines from the off and have a very clear design to work from and have beautifully prepared glass and design….needless to say I am just at the start of this adventure, but I am getting the hang of it slowly! The window details are heavily inspired by one of my children’s favourite books, Jinny Ghost (by Jane Ray and Berlie Doherty). A strange beautiful story about a ghost who transforms nightmares into exciting adventure dreams. The kids love the story, I love the illustration!

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We had a good day today with 5 visitors so far, we have an hour left, so who knows how many more (last year an entire evening class turned up at 7.30)

 

 

 

A Warm Open Studios Welcome!

Open Studios is in full swing! In the 3 days we have been open to the public we have had 20 visitors, which I am pretty pleased with! So, what is there to see?

Firstly and most importantly I am delighted to have my friend and ceramicist Ulrika-Igraine Munoz-Alarcon exhibiting and working in my garden gazebo. Not only is she heavily pregnant, but putting up with the less than ideal weather conditions (its a bit breezy in there!) with great grace! Ulrika makes wonderful vessels and jewellery from paper clay and creates delicate and striking pieces incorporating her own graphic design decals which she fires onto her work and is busy making new pieces whilst with us.

I have spruced up my workshop with a nice coat of white paint and have hung a lot of work in my studio! I have also put lots of my bigger pieces out in the garden and weather permitting (they dont like high winds) there is a shoal of  fused glass fish and a lot of glass raindrops hanging around. I have various projects on the go for the Open Studios period, making recycled fused glass tiles for my kitchen (limited success so far), a lovely little restoration for my friend Marion Andrews (who also participating in Open Studios with her fascinating seashell workshop) and 2 panels to make for my own home. The first of these panels is a long promised window for my little girl’s bedroom, they want mermaids, so that is what I am making them, giving me a chance to further develop my glass painting skills, which are still pretty limited! Anyway, day one, the glass is cut, tomorrow acid etching and painting the pieces. Please feel free to come and see how I get on with all these projects, or keep checking back here to see how I am doing!

We are open 11 am -6pm Until 18th September 2011. Open till 8pm Thursdays and closed to remind our children who we are on Mondays and Tuesdays

39 Regents Park, Exeter, EX1 2NY


I am a stained glass artist working in Exeter and a busy mum of 2; trying to carve a path through the tide of washing and children's toys that stands between me and making beautiful things.

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