Thoughts on The Mid Point Review

Going into the Mid Point Review I was quite apprehensive: I would be exposing more of the theory behind my practice, a subject both simple and complex; I would be exposing some new pieces and doodles; it was my first ever attempt to make a video, so I was working in a new field using a new tool-chain; and I wanted the video to be a piece that could stand up in its own right.

A few days have now passed, and I have had time to reflect on the experience. I think my video was well-received, and an interesting conversation resulted. I had taken a simple approach: to inform on the theory behind my practice, take initial doodles to finished pieces, and to look at future exploration. Due to the five minute length constraint some issues were not covered, so I was expecting a few questions to be left answered. I had not specified what the “third space” was, at the conversation about it was fascinating. I was surprised at the interest in how the pieces were physically made — and fortunate that those who had been in my Group Crit during the low residency could fill in some of the blanks. The discussion about the use of fiber on canvas, but the canvas is also a fiber, and especially that “nobody thinks about the space behind the canvas” is something that, now, I think I should highlight more in future pieces — it has been subconsciously done, and perhaps it should be more obvious. Perhaps I discussed the materials too much, but there was a conflict in the cohort as to whether this was good or bad — to some, it was too much, but to others it helped them read and understand the works with more depth. Ambiguity is always going to happen. As somebody observed: “its so abstract you could read anything into it”.

After the Mid Point Review I wanted to see how somebody who had no knowledge whatsoever of my work — an uninformed spectator — would respond. I asked Pete Mansell and he kindly agreed. His response confirmed some of the issues raised and also that “scale, texture, shape, color whereas I think you focused more on shape and color”, and “why this? … a short rationale … might be useful”.

The Mid Point Review was a very useful exercise and has provided me with some areas where I need to clarify, and also informed as to possible areas to expand upon.

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