Thursday, 5 June 2014

Challenge for the Exhibition

This is the blurb we had in the front of our catalogue about our group:

COOTS is a group of fibre related, mixed media artists who strive to create gallery quality, original works of art which are exhibited biennially.

COOTS is made up of 11 individuals who meet regularly to share ideas and skills, critique each others work, share resources, have workshops and generally embrace textiles.

More recently we have chosen to meet for longer periods less often and now attend 4-day retreats to stimulate and encourage each other. This makes our time together as artists more valuable.

Each alternate year a group challenge is issued to encourage us to extend our skills and try new techniques. The challenge displayed here is THE WOODPILE.

This “UPSTREAM OF THE HERD” exhibition showcases how each of the members has developed their chosen media by producing this outstanding exhibition of fibre related art.

As mentioned above, we have a challenge for each exhibition and this one was called Woodpile. One member gave everyone a photograph and we were to interpret it in our own way. 
This was the photograph, and here is the blurb in the catalogue about this challenge.

Wood, in all its forms, has always been a friend of man and, for a fibre artist, bark, old tree trunks, driftwood and cut logs create wonderful textures and shapes.

On the practical side, maintaining a healthy woodpile is a necessity for most Central Otago dwellers and this is even more important in the colder climates of Europe. We in New Zealand tend to be fairly prosaic about our woodpiles. Not so the Austrians. Their stacks are works of art, almost too beautiful to burn.

This woodpile was found in Liechtenstein, which shares a border with Austria and was probably never meant to be burnt – but it did beg to be photographed and came home to form the subject of our biennial group project.

The challenge was to use the photograph as a starting point and create a work of art that interpreted the woodpile as we each saw fit with no limits on colour, shape, size or kind of material that could be included. 

Here are some of the pieces members created to answer the challenge.

Here is a link to COOTS member Angela Meecham's blog regarding our opening and more photos.

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