2013 seems to be hurtling forward at an impressive speed, much in the same way I would hurtle towards a cabinet of ceramics with the promise of destruction... which is not to say I dislike ceramics, I'm simply fond of breaking things, preferably not my own.
I've been throwing myself with the same fervour towards my studio this week. In an effort to produce work at startling rates I have promised myself only to make art that makes me laugh. There are a few problems with this strategy: just because it makes me laugh, it doesn't mean anyone else will and evidently I have a somewhat depressive sense of humour - it's a fine line between laughing manically and sobbing uncontrollably.
In saying that I would like everyone to meet Bread Baby - a working title for a series of work centered around me swaddling a loaf of bread. Hilarious no?
here are some work in progress shots.
Since the hilarity of birthing a bread child was not enough to sustain my fickle attention span, I also introduced a strategic cat-in-pocket composition.
These little exercises are my tentative steps into the realms of the absurd. I'm yet to resolve these little guys but hopefully with time (not that I have much) I'll be able to create work that is both truly odd/strange/amiss and somewhat familiar.
The cat - a key cultural figurehead, a true social symbol of our time or that jerk who got in the laundry and peed on your washing. For as long as I can remember I've been amused by the concept of the cat... and the literal cat, as in, cats literally amuse me.
Upon visiting my studio this week some one remarked on my clearly remarkable (ha!) collection of ugly cat drawings. There is something so dandy about an unfortunate looking feline. I was also recently reminded of an unrealised series of paintings I did of appropriated vintage cat photographs.
here is an example:
amusing no? just look at that cone control, no cat could master such a grasp, ridiculous.
At this stage I think the project will remain unfulfilled. Some one did suggest the series was suitable for market place sales... I didn't necessarily take it as a compliment.
I have however been known for my feline motif previously, I assume my interest stems from some kind of crippling childhood trauma wherein I was smothered by a hoard of cats.
Super Kitten was a seminal work from last year
I imagine the work answers many questions, possibly more than it raises. Such as: What would a hairless cat look like with a human face? a true quandary for the ages; solved in a mere 120cm x 90cm painting.
I followed it up with a less abrasive cat portrait
Oddly, People seemed to respond better to it.
I think the cat will be a pervasive trope in my work in the future, although I may have exhausted the cat/my face combination.
If you haven't had your fill of cat based entertainment you should probably more than likely peruse the following websites, I do and it has evidently worked out quite well for me,
Antique Cat Photos
Women and Cats
Fuck Yeah Kitties
I'm branching out from my traditional skill sets and embracing the apparently "lesser" art of terrifying cake decoration. Needless to say I'm heavily influenced by popular culture in this particular element of my uh... cake painting.
I'm also exploring that ever insensitive post modern trope of appropriation - also known as stealing other people's art and claiming some kind of ownership... you know the one; it justifies plagiarism!
Please peruse my ever expanding port folio below (arranged conveniently in chronological order):
It reads 'Happee Birthdae Harry' - it was mostly hilarious because it wasn't in fact for anyone with such a wizardly name. Please note the quality cake construction.
This was my first foray into appropriation, stolen from my infrequent collaborative partner and generally delightful painty friend.
find the original here: http://www.jamiemumford.com
An exercise in subtlety.
The contemporary artist is often versed in multiple disciplines, this is my way of staying relevant: Cake Art.
It would seem that I have found myself in the company of some pretty swell emerging artists from Brisbane and Melbourne for a delightful little shin dig of a show at Bleeding Heart Gallery. If you're in the mood for witty banter and amiable company you should pop in say hello tonight.
15-22 March 2013
Opening night Friday 15 March
Nervous Laughter brings together seven emerging Australian artists in an investigation of play and colour in contemporary painting, drawing and sculpture. Responding to a strangeness in the everyday and visual culture, this group exhibition engages with awkward and intuitive responses to traditional fine art mediums as a means of reflecting aspects of contemporary identity and experience. Examining a playful tension between naïve gesture, obsessive process, figurative abstraction, hyperactive explosions of colour and the transformation of the mundane into extraordinary; this collection of artists reflect everyday anxieties and banalities with an overarching sense of humour and irreverence. Curated by Amanda Wolf, Nervous Laughter is produced in conjunction with the Bleeding Heart Emerging Curator program.
Be sure to check out our fearless curator Amanda Wolf