From the Studio

thoughts on art and process in action from a contemporary artist

Posts Tagged ‘costume

Creating Form

leave a comment »

I’ve been working on the form for the sculpture with the glass face which is part of the collaborative project.

I decided to go with a 1880-1890’s silhouette for the figure. It does all the right things for me. The time period was one where women were on the horizon of equal rights (some countries had just granted hem the right to vote, others soon followed), but they were also in many ways more restricted and confined than ever.

Physically I like the form- it stands out as different, but if I keep the lines and detail simple it can have an almost classical element. I considered the Rocco period (because it fit the mask so well- carnivale associations) but the form was too powerful- too wide and face-on imposing. Also the mask on the 1880’s figure will stand out as more symbolic than costume.

I like the way the 1880’s form is rather demure and simple from the front and has more weight as you move around it.

I decided to use this overskirt pattern- the folds are simple, but have a classical sculpture feel. I think the association will come through when it’s all done in white.

I think the tricky part will be having the whole thing in white and have it not read as “bride” but I think I can do that. I decided to do a more serious bustle under-structure partly for that reason- a small drapey thing would look like a bridal train, but a large bustle is unmistakably it’s own thing.

Otherwise I’ve been collecting images for sculpting the face in wax. Demure, idealized faces that have a hint of an edge to them.

I’ve also been working out the structure- how to assemble everything so that it goes together and comes apart easily, and getting the projector in there properly.

So far I only have colors and hazy images of what will be projected through the mask, but it’s coming along.

It’s nice to finally put some of my sewing/costuming into my artwork. I find that any serious interests and hobbies I have eventually make themselves useful.

On the flipside, I’ve avoided certain new media/hobbies (like anything to do with glass) because I am wary of them taking time away from my art. I’ve been wanting to work with glass for years, and have had access to a place for a good 6 years, but I wouldn’t allow myself to touch it until I had a real art project that demanded it. I know my propensity for distraction and have systems to counter it and keep some discipline. It keeps me productive.

Written by Mary Corey March

February 26, 2010 at 2:31 am