The Hand and the Glove... ramblings about making.

Week ending 18.05.07 -The Centrality of Clay

Teaching at CIA in Carlisle.

Back to the RCA and upstairs for a chat with Tomek Rygalik, an ex-RCA product designer, who seems to be based in college, partly engaged in his own practice partly as a researcher. We discussed vacuum forming specifically & materials generally. He has offered to take me through vacuum forming next Friday, when he returns from his trip to New York. Meanwhile I set about producing the mould of the outside cone.

Finished the cone mould.
Our Taiwanese artist friend, Chun Chao sent me some titles from his PhD bibliography that he thought might be relevant to my project. One particular recommendation – The Art of Light + Space was in stock in the library and looks very interesting.

Took the small cone mould down to the large vacuum forming machine in the basement. The third attempt was successful, but doesn’t bear close inspection as the styrene is of uneven thickness. My first impression is that it will appear insubstantial, though with the inclusion of a light source this could be an advantage.

Made another attempt to put together the ceramic cone, but the thickness of the clay walls is preventing the pieces from fitting. I then took a ‘cast’ of the inner cones, which after firing will be about 10% smaller and from which I can make new moulds.
The process is slow & frustrating, however it’s partly due to learning new techniques and partly that practical works takes longer in the college than in the workshop at home.
Continued to muse about the centrality of clay to my project on the evening train journey home. It's usually a good opportunity to write without too many distractions.
My thoughts about the use of clay are still not fully resolved, but are being aired in the Centrality of Clay essay in the Writing section of the website.