Sunday, 23 November 2008

Our Idea...

When told we were to pick a painting that inspired us out of the collections in the Graves gallery, Joyce and I knew what our first piece was: The Misses Vickers by J.S. Sargent. For a long time this had been one of our favourite pieces in the gallery. I dont know if it's the colours that attract us, or the intrigue and beauty of the girls (probaby all three) but we knew we wanted to include this painting. The hard part was finding a modern piece that we felt linked with this. We settled on The Coop.
We linked these paintings mainly due to the idea of more than one person and the link between women in the family.

We toyed around with this idea for a while. We also saw the element of class in the paintings- The contrast of the rich sisters to the servant-esque feel of the women in The Coop.
Our ideas went though may changes and stages until we thought of this:

Our Idea
We use different styles of cutlery stood up around a plate. The cutlery represents people and the plate (somehow on legs) represents a dinner table. We came up with this idea because it shows a clear role reversal. We wondered what would happen if the Vickers Sisters were made to do the work of the women in the coop? What would happen if the women in The Coop had the liberty of the sisters? We thought that cutlery was a great idea because not only does it link with us as people due to the Sheffield link with steel, but it also links with the idea in both paintings and the way that they made us feel. We thought a congregation of cutlery so to speak linked nicely with the idea of groups and bonds between family that we saw in the paintings

I'm not sure how the whole piece overall would look or how effective it would be... Or even if you understand the point I'm trying to make! But I think it would be really interesting to see our idea develop and turn into a piece of art

Twink X

Monday, 17 November 2008

How to make a lovely mother?

Today,me and Martha and Leslie have thought of making a recipe about lovely mother!~
Um.....So we gonna make a cook book about it, will see......
Haha!~ ^^"
We actually gonna write all the things on the cook book,however......
It's business secret,so I'm not going to tell you.....
But- you can still ask us about it!~ (Cause I can't really explain it.......)

The Booth

Chloe wasn't here this week. She was in London trying to get into exhibitions for free because she is naughty like that. So I had to face Kate and Caspar on my own armed only with the badly drawn diagram of our proposal. As you may know (or should as it was in my last post), our idea was to ask people to write down their thoughts, advice, worries or something that is important to them. We would then take their photo and display the statements on a back wall and the photos hung from the ceiling. Below this would be a video of people telling the camera their worries and a sheet of paper for the general viewers to write advice and encouragement to these strangers.

However, times change, and after a very interesting and thought provoking discussion with Kate and Caspar it looks like our design may be altered slightly. Obviously I need to run these ideas past Chloe but here is a rough outline:-

We would keep the photos and the statements buit instead of having them hanging we would have the whole instalment in a sort of booth. This would be quite small, just taller and wider than your average doorway (but 3D). All over the walls would be collaged photos and pieces of paper which you can spend as long as you want examining and thinking about. Also on the walls would be several nails sticking out at different levels. There would be a small box of tags (like the old ones you get on suitcases) which the general public could write advice, thougfhts and responces to the artwork. They could then hang them on the nails provided.

Right I have to go now as everyone is tydying and leaving around me. I hope at least some of that made sense and I'll let you know how it's all going throughout the project!

Susie x.

Houses with transparent roofs and glow in the dark stuff inside and turn the lights off:)

We are making houses in response to the Sam Taylor-Wood and the Lady Denham portrait. We had this idea because these two people have stories to tell, Sam Taylor Wood is trying to express hers while Lady Denham hides her story. The houses and the people represent stories that people have to tell. We were thinking of having them all exactly the same on the outside but then you open them up like a dolls' house and you can see what's inside and their stories they have to tell, that no-one would normally know. This would be a good way of being able to interact with the work - there's so many pieces of artwork that you can't touch and have to stay behind a line and you can't interact with it at all.

I also want a transparent roof! So you can see inside easily.

Too much dirt

For our interpretive work we have looked at The Painting of Lady Denham and the sculpture 'Kiss' by Marc Quinn. We explored the idea that beauty is sometimes found within and that you shouldn't take things at face value. We thought about stereotypes, expectations and preconceptions and how these things affect our ability to make judgements. The idea for our interpretive work was to buy an old battered car from a scrap yard and spray paint the engine with gold paint and upholster the seats inside with gold silk. The problem with this is that the curators probably won't be very happy with us putting a dirty, germ-ridden car alongside lots of valuable artworks. We therefore need to think of another everyday object which has a clear outside and inside and one which would be possible to customise with gold paint and fabric. Any suggestions would be gratefully received.

I know why the caged bird sings

The idea behind our project was to display the emotions the viewer gains when they first veiw the two peices. We felt the two peices where simular as they both had elements with represented captivity and restriction. From this we looked at diffrent ways to display captivity, we looked at clothing, buildings,cages and other restriciting things. our final idear is to produce a cage suspended in the gallary space with birds comeing out of the door atteched by wire. This will resemble the captivity shown in the both peices the wire on the birds will represent there fredom wich has been restrained.

Friday, 14 November 2008

What would you want from a social networking, media, blogging site?

I know you've all done some consultation about the museums in Yorkshire's part in the 2012 Cultural Olympiad, called 'Voyages', so this is a little bit different. I want to ask you all what you'd like from a Web 2.0 platform which is going to be designed specifically for young people (i.e. you and lots of other young people across the region). It will be called 'My2012' (in the same vein as MyLearning, if you've heard me talk about that website). The website will show, on an interactive map, all the youth based projects that are happening in museums across the region, including yours! Oh, and it will be FREE for you to use (yay!).

So what I'd like you to tell me about is: How would you use a website like this? What would you post on it? What parts would you use? What ideas do you have about what could be on there? Here are just a few ideas -

You could post videos, audio, images and slideshows. You could voice your opinions and aspirations and could even start a campaign about something that you're passionate about. You could have discussions about museums and museum collections and help us reinterpret our collections from your point of view. You could contribute to a blog, maybe even a wiki. Let your imagination run wild, you never know, we might make it happen!

It would be great if you could post your ideas and thoughts about my suggestions and make any of your own. You can post onto this blog or you can email me at if you want your ideas to be anonymous.

Thanks very much :)

Thursday, 13 November 2008

Feasibility study

Right guys! Timescales are creeping up on us and we have to get designers in to make up your ideas before Christmas. With this in mind it's of vital importance that you attend the next session if you want your idea to be put forward to the group for development. I've seen a lot of interesting ideas and hard work over the last few weeks so it would be great to have finished products to show for it. Looking forward to seeing you all 4.30 prompt :)

Tuesday, 11 November 2008

This is such a great oppurtunity and its so fun. I have made loads of new friends and we do so mant fun things. Going to London was sooooooooooooo fun, I hope we can do something like that again. Its great going to meet your friends after school and doing something you really enjoy. There is also another plus because it counts for my skill and service part for my Duke of Edinborough. Can't wait till next week when we will continue doing our projects.
Bye Annie x

Monday, 10 November 2008

Secrets, worries and advice.

Me and Chloe are doing a project about worries and advice. We went round photographing people in town asking them to write down either a piece of advice or something that is important to them. We got responses such as "Be considerate", "Dont' eat yellow snow", and names of loved ones. This, along with PostSecret and Gillian Wearing has inspired us to create an interactive installation. It will consist of photos hanging of people holding their advice / important stuff, a collage of those pieces of paper, a screen showing people telling their worries in life and a massive role of paper on which the general public can write down advice for the people shown on the video.

If people have any suggestions or ideas please feel free to comment back with them.

Susie & Chloe



I think its fun and you can learn alot from it. Today we are taking paintngs and creating new things inspired by them. It gives me an excuse to to go to town on a monday evening which isgreat. And you get to art while you're here! I heard about it after I was involved in a g+t project and I am glad I joined. It also is part of my Duke of Edinburgh so I don't have to fundraise and stuff.

Its cool.


youth Forum is Fun as you can do various fun things; like drawing. The current Visual Dialogue's Project about identity is fun. So far, we have done fun things such as going to London to the fun Tate modern and Tate Britian in one day. We have also had some fun ideas about our potential piece. I think, in the future, the project will be even more funas we create out final piece. Fun!

Christmas Party?

On your youth forum schedule our meeting on Monday 8th December is billed as Christmas meal/ party. Let me know what you'd like to do (or whether you'd rather just have a 'normal' workshop session on that date) and I will organise.


P.S. I think we should definitely have crackers; or could we make our own Visual Dialogues crackers, Louise?

Where shall we visit next?

I've been looking at organising a visit to Leeds Art Gallery for us all but, unfortunately, the exhibition Changing Places that Louise thought would be relevant to our work has finished showing there.
Feedback from our London visit was that it would be good to do more trips as a Youth Forum. I am happy to organise something if youth forum can come up with suggestions of places we could go that would be relevant to our project work. Do post your suggestions and thoughts about other people's suggestions and I will try and arrange something for the New Year.


Thursday, 6 November 2008

Hannah Starkey

I've been thinking a lot about Hannah Starkey's talk at Tate and how Butterfly catchers relates to The Lady of Shallot so thought I'd add my notes (partic for those of you who couldn't make it - or fell asleep!...)

For a start I was amazed she only made 4 photos a year - I always imagine photographers to be really prolific... I thought the reasons for her making photos were really interesting - because everyone makes them and everyone understands them. How diff would it have been if she'd done the same thing in painting?

I also had no idea she was from Belfast or that that's where this photo was taken - I imagined growing up somewhere like that with such a strong political history would have made her work more overtly political (e.g. like the work of Willie Doherty or Paul Seawright). Instead it seems to have affected her work in more subtle ways. She said it makes her question the truth of images much more and also how people understand them - are they as they seem?

So, about this photo. When she took it in 1999, she was about 5 years older than the girls in the pic. It was taken on the Falls Road in Belfast - which has a strong political significance in the history of Northern Ireland ( It also has a lot of importance in her personal history of growing up and so it looks at the link between place and growing up and the importance of place on our own identity (like the Bethan Huws). This has started to make me think about my own identity and how much where I grew up, or have lived, has had an impact upon who I am.

The building in the background is a disused linen mill. Apparently this road was lined with linen mills -most of the local women worked in these. For Starkey they represent a strong sense of community between mothers and daughters, neighbours etc - quite often it was money from these mills which kept families going. Many of the women lost their hearing in these mills - it was hard, hard work. She talked a lot about how much her photos focus on the lives of women, partic on everyday activities and experiences and the monotony of these. She talked about having quite a strong mother and how she was interested in her mum's relationships with other women within her family and beyond.

The rubble the girls are walking over is one of these mills which has been flattened - this represents the destruction of this sort of community. The mountains in the background are the Black Mountains - apparently there's a lot of mythology around these which she's interested in - the ghosts of the mill workers ('millies') were said to haunt them. She also mentioned the mythology of the butterfly net and what this represents. The girls' search seems really futile - it's quite dark and looks cold, so there aren't going to be any butterflies. But it also seems to represent hope in some way - despite the weather and time of day, they're still looking for butterflies.

When Starkey makes photos she works closely with actors. So, although they a have the feel of documentary photos - it looks like she could have come across these girls wandering over rubble and snapped their pic - they're actually carefully worked out and posed.

Right, I've run out of time and this has gone on way too long, so i'll write up my thoughts about the links to The Lady of Shallot soon...

Wednesday, 5 November 2008

Still Life

Continuing from the interpretation workshop with Hedsor, the group started to consider different meanings within the work, taking inspiration from the content and context as well as their own personal feelings about the work. Using the somantic map technique they devised a number of abstract pieces constructed from coloured shapes derived from the words they had chosen. We then discussed other ways that these images could be created and which materials might be best suited to the mood of the pieces. Potential media included metal sculpture, light boxes and even stained glass.

The group were then introduced to a number of artists using still life such as Paul Cezanne and Ben Nicholson to explore how artists used objects to depict mood and the different ways in which these objects might be rendered. The results were very diverse and picked up on some of the techniques shown.

Monday, 3 November 2008

visual dialogues, is a realy intresting an informative program. so far in the work shops we have explored, adapting and expressing diffrent mediums. looking at paintings for insperation to form new peices.

london was a great experience, i got to know my fellow pers, we got to share each others veiws and opinions on the Tate art work as well as the visual diolog program.I count my self very fortunate to be apart off such a unique and expressive group and i am looking forward to the diffrent outcomes people will make for are own personal exibit.

Modern Art?

So our trip to the Tate Modern really got me thinking about what Modern art actually is. There was a massive exhibition of red canvases namely created by Rothko. He basically paints a canvas red and then, if he feels adventurous, paints a darker red border. If you're really that interested Google it. Trust me- it's a disappointment. (Unless you're a minimalist. In which case never become an artist. Please.)

Aside from the horrors of rubbish "Art" there were actually soome good things at Tate Modern. On the ground floor there were a load of metal bunkbed frames in yellow and blue. On the bunkbeds there were various books in different languages and different genres. This instilation confused me at first and I was unsure what to think about. However, once I had sat down and stated reading I realised that I myself had become part of the art. That made me feel good :) Interactive art is the way forward in my opinion.

So, what IS Modern Art? I suppose it's a matter of opinion really. As is art in general. In my opinion a blank red canves does not constitute as art and I can think of many other artists who deserve that place in the Tate Modern.


london !

On wednsday the 29th of october the visual dialogues crew of sheffield embarked on a meaningful adventure to the tate britain/modern galleries. The day began with an early start accompanied by many cups of tea and coffee. We arrived in st pancreas with our group leader, david, at 11 ish, only to realise that there was more travelling to come. This was not taken too lightly. However, we marched to the tube station in high spirits, and eagerness to meet the other visual dialogue crews to battle it out in a duel of knowledge to be the ultimate visual dialogues crew!

p.s rothko is nothing special.....


Couldn't make it tonight cause I'm feeling a little under the weather.

See you all next week

Angela X