Final day of In:Site 14.

Apologies for the rather long gap in posting this last daily  blog for In:Site14.

The last day of 2014’s In:Site Graduate Festival of Creativity brought three more young artists to Birmingham Cathedral Square to complete their commissions.

First up was Flora Wallace from University of Brighton. Flora is one of the first cohort of graduates from the re-launched BA 3D Design and Craft course.  Her work is inspired directly  by her environment, from which she takes mounds which she turns into hand crafted tools. These tools are then used to create surface decoration which are applied to tall vases, hand built with clay slabs.

Flora used a new biodegradable polymer to create her moulds directly from bronze’s and stone carvings from within the Cathedral.  This amazing material changed its properties in minutes of being placed in boiling water, from hard granules to a malleable gum. Flora worked quickly moulding it to her chosen detail and affixing a premade wooden handle before the polymer hardened again. Flora told me that this stuff can be reused again and again and again merely by submerging it back into hot water for a few minutes.

Flora then worked diligently for the rest of the day. Firstly rolling out slabs of air hardening clay and forming then into cylindrical vases, before creating the ornamentation using her bespoke tools and applying them to her vessels.

The final three pieces were displayed in an outside alcove of the Cathedral.

Both Harriet Rose Knight and Hazel Baker, the final two artists working in the Cathedral Square were the last of the School of Jewellery’s Continued Collective.

In a marked departure from her graduate collection, Harriet Rode Knight bravely attempted a completely new technique for her In:Site Commission. She brought along a huge amount of laser cut wooden oval and semi-oval shapes and set about painstakingly painting the pieces in black, red and grey.

Once dry she carefully drilled holes in both ends of each shape to create individual links. As the day neared an end she methodically began to screw the  links together in sets of three, forming three sophisticated interlinking necklaces..

While sticking to her interests in using found objects, Hazel Baker also chose a change in style and materials. In a last minute move away from her In:Site proposal to use decaying copper piping, sheep’s wool and pen nibs inspired by her childhood years on a farm in rural West Wales,

Hazel instead created a high tech inspired  chain by sawing up and reconnecting old circuit boards. She also turned an industrial sized electric blue net into bazar yarn and attempted to knit with it.

This experiment was duly abandoned and she settled for threading orange plastic disks from a scrap store onto a length of rope to create  brash futuristic beading.

Lisa Falaschi
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