Wednesday, 29 February 2012

History of Art and Cloth & Habitable Space

I've had another two classes.  The History of Art tutorial made me feel quite anxious.  There seems a lot of work about subjects that I know nothing about, and we were asked to pick topics for our presentation and first essay.  The timetabling is out of sequence, as I get the tutorial before the lecture.  So I am not in command of the lecture information, before we start working on it in the tutorial! I prefer to get the presentation done early in the semester, because I like to work steadily, and not to have several assessments all at the same time.  This semester I have 2 essays and a presentation for Indigeneous Studies, 2 essays and a presentation for History of Art, and for Cloth & Habitable Space, 2 practical assessments and a written proposal.  I prefer to have them spread out a bit, and only one assessment in each week.  Given some assessment dates are defined by the tutors, I prefer to get the presentations done as early as possible to get them out of the way.

However once I got into the textile module, I started enjoying myself.  We started with group work.  I'm in a group with girls from last year's module and this makes it a lot easier.  We are looking at how to change the dressing of an area of interior architecture.  Each group has a different material to work with, choosing from industrial felt, plastic and wire net, gauze, foam sheeting, and plastic.  My group, with Ellie, Cassie and Victoria is working with foam sheeting.  We chose a corner in the dye room that has a mirror and brick wall.  We drew patterns from the brickwork, that were affected by the reflection from the mirror.  We had to put it into a repeat on a macquette, then apply it to the foam sheeting.  We ended up with a simple line pattern that we are cutting into the foam sheet, which will stand in a quarter circle around the corner with the bricks and mirror.  As you look through the pattern cut into the foam, you will see the bricks on one side and reflection of the back of the foam in the mirror.  I think next week we will be using the cut out shapes to add to the surface. 

It was slightly irritating to receive the class handout and find that on the first class, we were expected to bring a camera to document our progress.  Which none of us had.  Photos really add to your visual diary, especially when it is someone else's idea/sketch that the group choose to take forward for the project.  I will be in the History of Art lecture today and I think I will take my camera and go to the textile workshop and photograph the work we have done so far so I can put work to date in my visual diary.  It is quite apparent from the class specification that extensive documentation of testing is expected.  And this needs to start now.

This module will cover laser cutting, tufting, pleating and machine felting.  I'm happy to learn about this, but I do find it a bit odd that in a third year module, Curtin is still teaching.  In the UK, by this stage, people would be working on their own projects.  As I am a 2nd year student in a third year module, it is suits me to be learning new techniques, because I am here to develop skills. But in my heart, I want to be developing the printing and pattern making skills that I learned last semester.  And I'd like to use the repeat printer that we mastered last year, and we don't have one of these at Herts.  So I am a little frustrated but admit that I've learned so much more by being at Curtin, that I just need to get on with it.  Take the experiences that are offered and don't fret about not expanding the ones I've enjoyed so far.

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