Sunday, December 27, 2015

The Love Reliquary II

The Love Reliquary was my first cabinet artwork, that is it was mostly woodwork, with painting added. It took so many months to make and all new techniques. The result was good, but very rough around the edges. It was extremely delicate, had 200 leaves of 24 karat gold all over it, and was so delicate that it's only been shown in public once...

It had some successes as a work of art and craft, but many failures. Some crucial elements were missing or lost (such as the poem on the front) the paintings were difficult to remove without risking damage, and the base was crude in appearance and function. So, two years ago I started work on a second cabinet. It will contain the same paintings as the original work...

The last two years have been tumultuous. The artistic successes of 2012 led to some acclaim in 2013. I exhibited around the country more in 2014, but that was a little like a solitary travelling salesman. I showed in London from August onwards, fell in love for the first time and spent all of 2015 coming to terms with the end of that, and was forced to severely limit painting due to lack of space. The only growth of that year was in live performance, piano playing, and exhibition experiences with two solo exhibitions including my first in London, and three months helping to manage an art retail space. All of those things were the best lessons in the business of exhibiting art and putting on a show.

This year marked my 10th year as an artist. I can barely learn more in craft or exhibition experience (piano playing excepted!). Now it's time to focus on producing the greatest works. My ambitions have rarely been greater. I wish I had the time and money to enact them all (donations welcome, and/or an orchestra or museum!), but I will enact those I am able to enact!

And so time to re-visit The Love Reliquary. The start is the simplest of forms, a plain chunk of wood which will form the base. The first reliquary was largely pine and plaster coated with epoxy casting resin. The new one will be M.D.F. with resin-cast doors and solid brass hinges.

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