'Outgrowth Figure 1' was a temporary wall mural installed in early August 2020 made from the components I was making for a larger installation, 'Outgrowth 1.' It was a good way to get familiar with the temporary adhesives and work out how I was going to build things in the Outgrowth Series. The series is designed for temporary site-specific installations in galleries and outdoor seasonal exhibits. The components of the series are made out of woven glass and reflective acrylic beads.
The shapes of the components grow using the same algorithm. The larger pieces with more beads take on obvious hyperbolic, organic shapes. En masse the components appear to be growing colonies of climbing lichen or lush moss.
Negative space embellished figures from the 'Outgrowth' series can be interactive. If the mural is created on a light-colored wall with a strong light source behind, visitors' shadows will be cast onto the wall and animate the negative-space figures. The light source also makes the luminous reflective beads shine as the shadows pass beyond them.
I am researching sun colors for my disco ball sun. I am leaning toward a reddish pink ball like the artist Jules Breton was so good at painting. I'm thinking somewhere between pink grapefruit and blood orange. I haven't started testing color variations yet, but I have a pattern that evolved while working on Blue Sun. It has a good scale to get the texture I want and a little repeating spiral to make it dyanamic. Imagine the beaded tile to the left repeating all over a sphere. I have to look at more astronomical pictures of the sun to see how or whether I should flip the spirals going left and then right.
If you have ever been to the Art Institute of Chicago you have probably seen the picture above, "The Song of the Lark" from 1884. Although not a Regionalist piece, it resonated in sympathy with the midwestern aesthetic groundswell that brought "American Gothic" to fame.
Rising or setting, I like his suns. These photos don't do them justice. The top one below is called "The Weeders" or "The Gleaners". The title I am finding for the bottom one is "Tired Gleaner." I'm guessing Breton's real titles were in French.
I'm starting work on a mercury glass almost-globe vase. It's a study for a disco ball sun or-- if my proposal is accepted for Par Excellence--Saturn. Or both.
I want the reflective silvery surface to shine through the bead mosaic. I am learning some new bead tiling techniques inspired by of Gwen Fisher's blog. The modular tiles have nice voids that will hopefully give me a layered, dappled effect.
It's going to be a blue star because I don't think I need those colors for other projects. I can spare them. I will be using blue reflective beads and blue transparent, maybe some translucent 6/0 beads.
Back to Gwen Fisher...she is one of the hyperbolic and mathematical beaders. I love her work.
This project took me about 6 months from concept to installing it and taking pictures yesterday. Once the photos were in the can I was so relieved that I got everything done that I had a good cry.
This piece celebrates the power of the sun. In addition to playing with optics and light effects like all of my other pieces, this one harvests photons with solar collectors and photo-luminescent pigment. As my daughter informed me the piece has an Easter egg...when it gets dark this piece glows like a bioluminescent cove in a tropical paradise. The underpainting has a layer of a pigment called Blue Lit that glows from beneath the transparent and translucent beads.
The solar powered elements soak up sunlight all day and then when it gets dark enough they turn on their fairy lights.
I plan to exhibit "Solar Panels" for the Elmhurst Artist Guild's Winter Member's Show. The Guild has a 40" max width for the show so "Solar Panels" will be installed vertically. That will be fun to see!
Below is a video, shots of the piece in daylight, twilight, and dark modes, the prep studies, and a spin-off bowl that I made while making solar panels.
Thanks to the judge for the “In and Around-Vessels and Jewelry” exhibit at the Fine Line Art Center’s Kavanagh Gallery for the Merit Award in vessels. The show runs from June 18 through August 10, 2018 at the Fine Line Art Center in St. Charles, IL. The art work of many fine artisans and artists is on display. The show has a delightful variety of media and techniques.
The Fine Line Art Center is a gem. I encourage everyone to take advantage of the enriching classes, programs and exhibits on offer there.
Julie Mars' current events, projects, & inspirations.