First meeting with Denise Hawrysio for Placements
I was greeted by Denise by the gates of the glass house studios in Southwark. Stepping into her very warm and charming little studio we very quickly began speaking about the struggles with the Art world and London in general. It was interesting to hear Denise’s observations and thoughts, being an established artist for almost 25 years I was very much a sponge with her words. We also quickly found a shared love for feline beings and I felt got along very well. Which will be crucial for working together in a fairly small space. I also have the option of working from home but I can see myself getting a lot more from this opportunity if I work from her studio and hopefully there could be a relationship built that could be useful for both.
Denise introduced me to her work which I found very interesting. I have a fascination with cut-outs and “erasing” parts of an image/photo to give it a new meaning. Which is very much what her work is about. I saw a lot of resemblance in her work from Julie Cockburn and John Stezaker two artists which I very much admire.
The work that I will be helping her with is a very large body of work called “the spotlight project”. Spotlight is a large book with directories for actors, so it has there headshot and then underneath their information: eye colour, name and height. These spotlight books (2) that she has acquired are from 1993, on of them for women and the other one for men. In each spotlight book there is hundreds and hundreds of photos with two portrait photos on each page, so four on each spread. Denise has cut everyones face so you can see through each face the pages/patterns from the pages behind.
It creates new “faces” each built up of different structures and imagery. Denise is now wanting to put each individual face into a book. Each book has 40 images and she is currently on volume 7. And this is where I come in, this is a very big project and very much process art. There is a specific numbered, repetitiv process needed to get all the imagery looking correct and in place. It will be very repetitive but I am hoping that this very organised and controlled work could bring me some further understanding to my own practice with storing/collecting imagery.
I do also love the imagery and I am amazed by how each image tells such a different story. It is nice to work with imagery that is not only built up digitally but there has been a hands on cut-out practice behind it which gives it many “accidental” details that I really like.
I do just hope that I will get some more from this placement, the tasks that I will be doing of working with the photos in photoshop isn’t really teaching me any new skills, it is very much what I do on a daily basis. We will see…