I did a peer review at the end of week 7, as I asked for feed back on the five sculptures that I had already created. My peer told me that ‘less is more’ and that when I continue to make the last three chairs I should remember not to over complicate the sculptures.
I started with focusing on the sculpture to represent the little boy. Unlike the other sculptures where I have been very keen to include physical indicators of their human bodies, with the little boy I wanted to create a subtle contrast as one thought that I had when I was interviewing the boys and teenagers is the prevalence of technology in their lives. They are always attached to some kind of electronic device almost like another limb.
I found some old headphones and a black Nintendo DS, and starting experimenting with the placement of them on the wooden school chair.
As the Nintendo is all black I thought that it might be quite effective to paint the headphones fully black also so that their is no depth of colour or contrast and everything is black and white. There are many levels of symbolism behind doing this, firstly with no colour just black and white the chair will contrast the other chairs with physical bodily elements, and emphasis the fact that technology has usurped the need for actual physical parts of a human body, as the young boy is the youngest out all of the people represented through the sculptures and he has grown up in a technology driven world like none of the others represented in the sculpture before him. The black and white also symbolises the lack of complexity the boys felt in answering the questions they both found it easy to talk openly and honestly.
The next sculpture that I focused on was the middle aged woman. I firstly picked out three different elements that all compliment each other, whilst remaining within the bounds of neutral tones. I wanted the neutrality of this piece to come through, and I want the piece to almost fade into the background when compared to some of the other sculptures, as the category of middle aged women particularly mothers, holds less interest than a lot of the other sculptures, as all of the middle aged mothers I spoke to gave fairly bland answers that were uninspired and fairly similar.
I wanted to make sure that the legs were crossed with the jeans because when I was taking reference photos of a middle aged woman she always had her legs crossed.
Although I think these three pieces all work well together, I remembered the feedback that I had received in the peer review and I wanted to make sure that the sculpture was as simple as possible, so I decided to take away the white trousers and I do quite like the simplicity of the scarf and necklace with the delicate femininity of the chair coming through underneath.
This week I thought that it was really important to try to complete all of the sculptures to a standard that I would deem acceptable if nothing else, as the final hand in is next week.
The last sculpture that I had to work on is the middle aged man. For this sculpture I started of with a black fleece draped over the deck chair but I felt as though this item of clothing was not strong enough. I then thought to use a tie, but I was inspired by work that I had seen by Robert Gober, where he would contrast elements of the human body in domestic scenarios to discuss political ideas, he abruptly juxtaposes legs and feet and hair with objects that they would never usually be associated with or at least would not be combined into one thing. I decided that I wanted to thread hair into my tie as this would add another level to the piece and force people to consider the presence of hair on a tie. The idea of putting hair on the tie is to suggest the hairy stomach of a typical middle aged man, whilst being contrasted with a smart tie.
I think that adding hair to the tie was a very effective thing to do and it also adds to the mixture of bone and skin, in other element of the project. I also added some black, large male shoes in a position so they look like they are spread out in a typical male position.
I think that the simplicity definitely works well in this piece, and the hair and the position of the shoes make all of the difference to effective the sculpture is in showing of a particular type of person with so little objects.
I think that I am very aware that their are many more experiments that I could conduct and many more variations of objects that I could try to make the sculptures even more succinct, however, I do not have unlimited time to complete this piece and something that I would try and do better if I had my time again would be to spend it finding more and more objects to play around with to try to create the best figurative sculptures possible.