Sunday, November 27, 2011

Enamel, Pecha Kucha and Nancy Campbell

No Mine is an Island bleeding tailings into the sea

I was relentlessly positive going into the New Zealand's general election yesterday, but despite a great showing for the Green Party, we now have a new government keen on drilling deep sea oil and opening up new coal mines and a myriad of other ruinous policies. I'm trying to console myself with the thought that I will have plenty of local inspiration for making work about human hubris and folly in the environment. Cold comfort.

Rather than spending the evening following election results with increasing anguish, I dragged a bunch of friends over the hill to Raglan, a charming sea side village where I'd been invited to reprise my last Pecha Kucha presentation. It was my first PK outside of Hamilton and I was interested to see how Raglan's unique culture was represented. The emphasis was on environmental-themed creative projects rather than design per se. Rick Thorpe on his experiences bringing the Black Robin back from the brink of extinction (5 birds in the world in the 1970s, now over 250) and Jacqui Forbes on Raglan's hugely successful zero waste project, Xtreme Waste were highlights.

The Old School Art Centre was packed full of locals on a Saturday night. My own presentation which involved reading some of my poems accompanied by slides of my stitching projects, was well received.

"... a shimmering turbulence on the surface" or a lake of tailings

One of the poems was Cake, which has just been published in Enamel 3, a lovely little poetry journal published by Emma Barnes. Its about a dream I had involving cake and androids (the robot-human hybrids, not the gadgets) and I showed slides of work that looked a bit cake-like.

Ponting's Genius, about an early Antarctic photographer, was easier to illustrate with images from my Antarctic work. Miner's Cook of course has its very own illustrative piece No Mine is an Island. If Jellyfish Wrote History has enough linguistic imagery to sit with a variety of stitched pieces, none of which have anything to do with jellyfish really.

Evoking jellyfish with a couple of iceberg-colour test pieces

And speaking of being published, an interview I did with Nancy Campbell back in October is now up on her blog. Nancy is a writer and printmaker who is as into the Arctic as I am the Antarctic. Her blog is a delightful grab bag of Arctic, bookish and printerly topics all of which warm my heart.

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