Archive for the ‘creating’ Category

Time & Nature

Sunday, February 3rd, 2019

Exploring objects and textiles is keeping me away from painting in the studio at the moment, but that’s ok, because I’m not just a painter…..

Today, I have been working with time and nature but, now it’s too hot to do anything much, as the temp in the valley has reached 39 Celsius and getting hotter.

I get torn between contemporary and lush, extravagant. Old bones, textiles, rusted wires, watch faces, bits of stick with moss , vintage cosmetic bottles and handmade French influenced, embellishments are on my bench.

Memories and feelings keep flooding back from my times spent in France. Especially touched by Versailles palace and other places in Europe and England. Old history feeds my creativity.

Old rusted wire and found textiles are twisted and sewn with gold threads and remind me of couture and Versailles decadent history.

Formed into fragments that will probably be part of something else.

This one looks like a weird kind of bird.

I’ve also had the de-clutter bug lately so its feels liberating to use up stuff Ive been hoarding for ever.

© 2019, Jenny Davis. All rights reserved.

Art & Recycling. Textiles & Mixed media.

Friday, January 18th, 2019

Art and recycling goes hand-in-hand in the textile and mixed- media side of my arts practice.

My artworks are often created from old, discarded clothing, vintage and antique textiles, papers and found objects. I enjoy making use of stuff that has had a life already; a life that is often purely functional and as far removed from ‘art’ as you can imagine.

I’ve been recycling all my life to make art. As a child, I pulled apart, old clothing and nylon stockings “I used to collect fabric waste from mum’s sewing and knitting basket, making wall hangings out of that.” Nowadays, I cut up my own clothing and others, antique quilts, vintage linens, fancywork and men’s suits.

The process of searching and collecting materials, is also, a very important part of my art’s making. It may take weeks, months, even years, to find a piece that talks to me. Most of the time though, a fragment of fabric, clothing or object, will trigger off the idea. I collect and document many of the pieces I find, by labeling or remembering, its history of when & where it was found. This gives me another layer to work with.

The search for materials has taken me to many weird and wonderful places over the years.

The sometimes, dodgy, back streets of cities, in Barcelona, Italy and France. Markets and charity shops in Australia, France and England. Underground spaces, abandoned buildings, coast lines and vacant beaches. Friends, family and strangers, have also, donated materials to use in my work.

By transforming old, recycled and reused materials, it enriches the stories I like to tell in my contemporary art and gives a new life, to materials destined to be wasted and thrown away.

© 2019, Jenny Davis. All rights reserved.

Focus, Simplify & London.

Thursday, November 15th, 2018

Recently, I’ve been unable to focus fully on my work. I feel I may have too many things going on in my life and need to simplify. I’ve also been procrastinating too long, putting off a few decisions, I need to make, regarding my arts practice.  I know, I just have to get on with it,  if I only knew what “IT” was ? Also, its been hard lately having to divide my time, between creating and dealing with with other life circumstances that have been cropping up.  I know as an artist, my main focus is to create, or nothing will get done, but more important, my inner- self will suffer.

In the meantime, my daughter and her partner (xox) , gifted me a trip to London to visit  them. After not seeing her for a few years, it was so nice to catch up and do stuff together again. We managed to fit in some very interesting exhibitions.  The Anni Albers (1899-1994) textile exhibition at Tate Modern, was excellent. She was student of the Bauhaus art school and like other women at that time , was discouraged from becoming a painter. Instead, she enrolled in the weaving shop and made textiles her means of expression. Albers rose to become an influential figure, exploring the technical limits of hand-weaving to pioneer innovative uses of woven fabric as art, architecture and design.

 

 

 

 

Other exhibitions on at the V&A Museum.

Fashioned from Nature, explores the complex relationship between fashion and nature from 1600 to the present day.

 

 

A Frida Kahlo exhibition of her belongings. There was also huge jewelry exhibition and video game exhibition on. The collections are immense. I particularly enjoyed Asian textiles & objects.

 

 

 

 

The “Censored! Stage, Screen Society at 50”  exhibition was brilliant. Especially as I can remember most of it happening when I was a teenager.

 

 

 

It took a bit of getting around the V&A  building, as its built around a very large inner courtyard. The signage wasn’t brilliant and quite confusing. I only saw a small portion of the collections and if I get another chance Id like explore it some more.

Another exhibition, I particularly loved and related too, The Viktor Wynd Museum of Curiosities, Fine Art & Natural History.

 

A “Kunstkammer” of cabinets full of weird and wonderful curiosities. Extraordinary dioramas displayed in a dark underground cellar, reached only by going down a very steep, spiral stair case.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I also managed to do a brief  bit of mudlarking on the Thames. I found a handful of bits & pieces. A handmade nail used to secure sails to the masts of sailing ships and a few shards of pottery and I think part of a Tudor terracotta tile.

 

 

 

 

I’m home in Australia now and slowly getting back into studio mode. Having spent time with my family and inspired by new adventurers, I’m feeling more nurtured to just get on with “IT” and not think too much.

 

 

 

© 2018, Jenny Davis. All rights reserved.

Pure Abstract Painting. Abstract Art. New Course.

Sunday, March 4th, 2018

Abstract art strips away the narrative, the real and expected visual story. It requires us to resolve a problem. We want to impose a rational explanation – or see something in abstract art so we feel comfortable. It makes our brains work harder and in a different way – at a subconscious level.

 

 

 

Maybe that’s why some people find abstract art more intimidating and are quick to dismiss it.

 

 

If you are interested in learning more about abstract art and how to create abstract paintings, I am in the process of creating my first online course. “Pure Abstract Painting”

 

 

 

This is something I have been wanting to do for many years and will let you know when my course is ready for enrollment.

 

 

A few abstract paintings I’ve been working on today.  I love the continual changes when working this way.

 

 

 

© 2018, Jenny Davis. All rights reserved.

The Power of an Object. Identity through Object.

Sunday, November 12th, 2017

One of my life- time interests is collecting vintage, antique and found objects. I believe, through objects, stories can be told, and through imagination, new ones found.

Objects and their stories, often inspire my art making too. I deconstruct items for sculpture. Old clothing and antique quilts, are often used in textile pieces, artist books and collage. Aged  surfaces and patinas of collections, make their way into my abstract paintings, too.

 

 

Lately, I have been asking myself a few questions about, collecting and identity. Especially after the passing of my step father a few years ago, when I had the huge task, of cleaning out his house and shed. Overwhelming at times, the hoard, has found it’s way into my life & studio

 

 

Having only known him for a short time, (5yrs) I’ve discovered, through his belongings and objects, a hidden or, new identity.

 

 

Strangely , I now find myself imagining, a new “make believe identity” through the objects he hoarded

 

 

This has lead me to many questions…

When alive, do we really know a person? and can things and objects help us to see, a new, or different identity?

Through objects and belongings, can we feel connected to that person?

Can objects change, how we see others & ourselves?

 

 

 

 

 

© 2017, Jenny Davis. All rights reserved.

Stuck for Ideas.

Tuesday, February 28th, 2017

Sometimes, when I’m stuck for ideas making artwork and it’s just not happening, I  like to throw a heap of things together and arrange them near my work.

The items, may relate in colour, texture and type or be opposing which, I find much more exciting. Your brain will automatically try to come up with solutions. Expanding your ideas and creating new ones.

The flow on of ideas is sometimes amazing. It can lead to, resolving the artwork in front of you, as well as, give you ideas for a whole new body of work.

Juxtaposition and connections of items together seems to work for me.

I believe there is a creative force that is connected to everything we do.

© 2017, Jenny Davis. All rights reserved.

Crut. New Paintings. Cradled Boards.

Saturday, June 25th, 2016

Crut. New Paintings. Cradled Boards.

Jenny Davis_Crut_Acrylic paint oil paint on birch cradled Board under 2rgb

 

3 new paintings, well, it’s actually one painting, a triptych, I did for a recent art prize. Each painting was made with acrylic paint and small areas of oil paint on birch cradled boards.

 

Jenny Davis_2016_Crut_Acrylic Paint, Oil Paint on Birch Cradled Board 1

 

I love using boards for painting. The surface is much more forgiving than canvas. Perfect for the spontaneous, mark-making and material layering I tend to do.  I can scratch, sand, scrape back, engrave and it won’t tear, or break like canvas.

 

Jenny Davis_2016_Crut_Acrylic Paint, Oil Paint on Birch Cradled Board

 

If I could get larger cradled boards and still be able to lift them, I would be very happy. The size of these boards are 50 x 50cm. each. Overall size 150cm. x 50cm.

 

Jenny Davis_2016_Crut_Acrylic Paint, Oil Paint on Birch Cradled Board 2

 

About Crut

Communication to the masses. Text in the environment can mark territory, give control and can validate those, who don’t have a voice in the mainstream order. Through mark-making in the environment everybody can be heard. I see beauty and at times, desperation in the messages, found in the streets, and in the abandoned, underground and derelict spaces. Layers of tagging, graffiti and found marks on weathered surfaces tell stories about the past, present and future. Aesthetically they can be beautiful, even though they may have been painted illicitly on a wall, or other surface’s. My abstractions are investigations into, marks, traces and messages, left behind, in the urban and rural environment.

 

Jenny Davis_Crut_Acrylic paint oil paint on birch cradled Board under 2rgb

© 2016, Jenny Davis. All rights reserved.

When is a painting finished ?

Saturday, November 22nd, 2014

This painting was started about 6 weeks ago and is still morphing…

Jenny Davis_ Painting in Progress S

Beginning with large areas of loose colour. I lived with it and watched

 


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I tightened it up with more colour, dribbles and abstract geometric forms. For the next week I watched again…

 

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Still not satisfied, I threw it on the floor and used, bucket and broom, to scrub, pour & glaze with puddles of watery acrylic paint and Gesso to muddy it up

 

Jenny Davis_ Paint in Progress 2

Jenny Davis_ Paint in Progress 4

Once dry, I worked into the forms to bring them back again

 

Jenny Davis_ Paint in Progress 7

Recently, I scrubbed away more areas, added several paint glazes and played across the surface with oil pastel for days

 

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When is a painting finished?

It will tell me…

© 2014, Jenny Davis. All rights reserved.

In the Studio. Work in Progress.

Sunday, October 12th, 2014

Started this painting at Jane’s studio

 

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Sat and watched it today

 

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Still a way to go with colour oil pastel & paint

 

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It’s been good getting back to larger paintings… 140x120cm.

 

 

 

 

 

© 2014, Jenny Davis. All rights reserved.

Collaborative Art Project.

Sunday, August 24th, 2014

The original “No Yes” book below is now finished after 2 collaborative swaps with Australian artist Jack Oudyn

Please see previous post on “Collaborative Art”

1st swap with my marks only

 

2nd swap with Jacks marks and we both decided it was finished!

 

It has an oriental feel to it.

Coming up soon, the other finished artist book!

 

© 2014, Jenny Davis. All rights reserved.

Mail Art. Nomad Art. Transportable Art.

Wednesday, July 9th, 2014

Finished Mail Art. Sending off to Australia, France, South Africa, USA, Canada and Portugal.

“Earth Works” series.

Gocco screen print. Distress inks. Stencil. Thread. Collage. Coloured pencil on vintage graph paper and  found cardboard packaging.

© 2014, Jenny Davis. All rights reserved.

Rustic Catalan Farmhouse & Frottage.

Friday, June 20th, 2014

I find Frottage rubbings are fun to do.  I did the rubbings, when I was an artist in residency in Spain. The rustic farmhouse was over 200 years old and once a winery. It had amazing textures throughout and the studio’s. were very generous in size.

© 2014, Jenny Davis. All rights reserved.

The Travelling Artist

Saturday, March 8th, 2014

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Wherever I go I like to have all my art materials in one place encase I need to jot down an idea, or for when I get that creative burst.

 

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So, when I found this old case I knew exactly what I would do with it. I made myself a personal art kit for when I go out and about. I keep this case in my car and it goes everywhere with me. I also have a smaller kit for when I travel overseas. This kit is much lighter so I can collect art materials along the way

 

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It has everything I need for drawing, painting, collage, photo transfer, stamping and writing

In Transit series of collages

 

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Acrylic paints and ink in a pouch my daughter gave me

 

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Chalk in a vintage medical tin

 

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Water colour paints, coloured pencils and double sided tape

 

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Brushes for painting, pens for drawing and writing, felt pens, graphite pencils, knife, scissors and glue stick for collage

 

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Paint swatches

 

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Collage papers in a plastic pouch.  Mixed lot of vintage and newer papers

 

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Hand- dyed coffee filters, vintage wallpaper, labels and book pages

 

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Stained printed matter and newer papers

 

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Old music prayer book

 

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1932 school book full of hand drawn  world maps

 

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1960s New Idea magazine for cutting

 

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Old advertising

 

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Vintage encyclopeadia pages sealed with a layer of translucent gesso paint

 

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A book of hand-made French paper

 

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Small canvas boards and palette, matt and gloss medium for collage, painting & transfers

 

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Mini stamping kit in old cigar tin

 

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Stamp pad, tiny rubber text stamps in matchbox, stamp holder and tweezers

 

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I also carry a selection of my hand made artist books in progress to work in.

 

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My books are made from found papers, junk mail, advertising

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used envelopes, cereal boxes and food packaging

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Embellished with used clothing labels, tags, stamps, stickers, pen ,ink and found fabric scraps

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sewn with thread or wire and filled with whatever else I find in my travels

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It’s amazing how much I can fit into the case

 

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Do you have a portable art kit ?  Whats in your art kit ?

See Jenny’s portfolio here

Back to “Free Tutorials”

© 2014 – 2015, Jenny Davis. All rights reserved.

Black & White Study

Wednesday, November 6th, 2013

Black and white study for the collage course I’m doing. We were asked to create a collage using only black and white materials. I loved this exercise and found myself wanting to add some colour…I couldn’t resist and made 2 collages.

 

 

I collected 2 canvas boards,  black and white vintage papers, wallpaper and newer paper

 

 

As in abstract painting, I like to work quickly and not worry too much about leaving marks and splotches as I’m doing. In some areas I made marks with felt pens and white gesso paint trying to blend the different textures and areas.

 

I also explored Stephanie’s idea and used some glitter paint mixing it with gesso so it became a greyish colour. I like the end result but may go further and sand back the whole lot, giving it a worn-out appearance.

 

 

© 2013 – 2014, Jenny Davis. All rights reserved.

“Artplay” Day One

Tuesday, November 5th, 2013

My first practical day of the “30 Days of Collage” by Stephanie Levy course.

It was Melbourne Cup Day  so this was a good excuse for me to grab a (naughty snack attack) stash to help me along with my artplay day. I gathered all my paints , crayons, salt, tapes and began.

The first lot of images are the process using, paint with salt, glue , tape, pastel and more…The second lot of images are the finished result.

 

 

What a fun way to get a big bunch of gorgeous papers together for creating collage and books !

 

and a few more papers felt pen, masking tape and water

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

© 2013 – 2014, Jenny Davis. All rights reserved.

Playtime. 30 Days of Collage.

Saturday, November 2nd, 2013

On Monday I start a new art course, “30 Days of Collage” by Stephanie Levy

Image copyright Stephanie Levy 2013

Image copyright Stephanie Levy 2013

I love creating collage and think this course will help me to free up to experiment and play instead of being so serious and restricted when creating collage. I want to feel free to play with the process without worrying about the end result. Just like when creating my abstract paintings

I love Stephanie’s Art and thought her course would be perfect for this.

Images copyright Stephanie Levy

Image copyright Stephanie Levy 2013

I’m really looking forward to the interviews with 10 top collage artists from around the world who will share their tips and give us peeks at their art and arts practice.

We will be creating our own collage materials and learn how to decorate and paint our own unique papers. As well, I get to recycle and use up, my huge collection of vintage papers, fabrics, wallpapers and junk to make beautiful artworks and make room in my studio for new art projects.

 

 

© 2013 – 2014, Jenny Davis. All rights reserved.

Fresh from the Studio – Sensor Ship

Friday, October 18th, 2013

Fresh from the Studio

Sensor Ship 2 & Sensor Ship

Surface quality is very important to me and my paintings consist of many layers of paint and line making. During my process I continuously scrape, wipe and sand back layers until only a trace remains of my previous mark making.

 

Sensor Ship 2
Jenny Davis
Acrylic on Canvas
120 x 60cm

 

In both paintings you can see little tears and pockets of bright grainy colour pushing through to the top layers. I wanted the ghosts of my past marks and texture to sit just below the surface, still and silent. Waiting to be discovered.

 

"Sensor Ship" by Jenny Davis. Acrylic painting on canvas. 120 x 90cm.

 

Sensor Ship
Jenny Davis
Acrylic on Canvas
120 x 60cm.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

© 2013 – 2014, Jenny Davis. All rights reserved.

My favourite artist of the month. Anselm Kiefer.

Saturday, March 9th, 2013

 

My favourite artist of the month is Anselm Kiefer. A German artist who creates paintings and monumental installations with crusted surfaces, incorporating, lead, concrete, ash, acid, earth, glass and gold, broken glass, oil, emulsion, shellac, acrylic and raw materials from nature.

 

1_e_overyourcities1016-Anselm-Kiefer-Himmelsschlucht-2011-20123324kiefer_toilespages and planesh2_1995.14.4100066473a1fd3a2469753d346be80982_1kiefer 6Painting    Anselm Kiefer, The Wave - detailnational-art03

I particularly like Kiefer’s ambitious project of transforming an old derilict silk factory in La Ribaute France into a monumental studio art complex where he created his monumental works. He dug out underground chambers, tunnels, to create living and working spaces  set amongst strange, reinforced, concrete towers and bunkers, woods and caves. There was even a crypt, an amphitheatre and underground pool.

A trailer from the movie “Over Your Cities Grass Will Grow” about Kiefer’s last days at the studio.

 

Robert Hughes on Anselm Kiefer

 

A record of an assistant’s time with Anselm Kiefer from his studio in Barjac. This was in 1999 -2000.

 

© 2013 – 2014, Jenny Davis. All rights reserved.

“LAND TO LIGHT – Photo Diaries”

Monday, April 23rd, 2012
 All Photo’s by Charles Farrugia
Here are some pictures of the opening and links

© 2012 – 2014, Jenny Davis. All rights reserved.

Land to Light – 4 Victorian Artists

Monday, March 26th, 2012

 

 

Your invited to the opening of “LAND TO LIGHT” exhibition at 5pm on Tuesday 17th April at Switchback Gallery – Curated by Charles Farrugia and Rodney Forbes

Artists
Jenny Davis
Charles Farrugia
John Martin
Mark Story

Exhibition dates: 17th April to 24th May, 2012 – Mon-Fri 9.00 to 5.00 or by appt.
Address: Gippsland Centre for Art and Design
Building 6S Monash University Gippsland Campus
Churchill 3842

Contact:  gippsland@artdes.monash.edu.au

Website: http://www.artdes.monash.edu.au/gippsland/switchback/

Phone (03) 9902 6261

How to get there: http://www.gippsland.monash.edu.au/campus/getthereandpark.html

© 2012 – 2014, Jenny Davis. All rights reserved.