April Cole set up and runs The Studio, a Facebook group of mixed media artists. I’m taking part in the July project. 5″x7″ canvas boards travel round and each artist receiving it adds something. It arrives back to the hands of the originator, transformed. I sent mine to Minnesota for its first additions and I’ve just received my first to add to, from artist Jackie Davidson, of Mobile, Alabama. Oh, how exotic, to be coming and going from such places!
I wrote to Jackie on receipt of her panel. That it was like an enchanted garden, full of layered depths in both space and time. Time because of the spiral, which can be found on prehistoric rock carvings everywhere. The spiral on Jackie’s panel is silver. My scanner will only register grey. But it is like a silver unfurling fern leaf and fern was the first ever plant to evolve, I believe?
Above are Jackie’s original and then with my additions. I didn’t want to intrude too much on Jackie’s original. The day I received it I went out to buy flowers for the house. They were wrapped in cellophane overwritten with handwriting: names of flowers and in the exact same pink as the pink circles in Jackie’s work. How serendipitous! I had to find a way of adding this.
I made a green version in Photoshop of a photo of a pink on black fern bleach print I created a while back. I printed this off onto a paste paint print I’d made using my Gelli plate. This of course is printer abuse, but I abuse all my machines in the name of art. (What’s the point of a machine if you can’t make art with it)?
I cut out what I hope is a fern shape, glued it to a bit of my paste paint Gelli print, then glued it to Jackie’s canvas board. I then cut out some of the writing on the cellophane flower wrap and glued this on top. The lettering links the fern shape with the silver spiral.
Mobile. I discovered it’s pronounced Mo-beel, as in the French, and soon learnt that it was the first capital of French Louisiana (1702) and the name has nothing to do with mobility, but is named after the Mobila First Nations Indians. Previous variants of the name are Mavilla, Mabilla and Mauvilla. First colonised by France, it passed into British hands, then Spanish, then joined the Confederate States of America, which of course, collapsed.
Minnesota, Alabama, I wonder where the next travelling canvas will take me? They seem more like flying carpets.
- The Studio: Travelling Canvas Project (annisik51.wordpress.com)