Katherine Kennedy, Tearing & Tearing (study), 2014

13 Nov


sorry about the quality of these photos

The initial Proposal:

Tearing & Tearing (study), as a proposed artwork will expose the two separate and yet linked meanings of the one word ‘tear’. Firstly to tear is to pull apart, into pieces by force, to make (an opening) by ripping, laceration, to separate forcefully, wrench, divide or disrupt. The second ‘tearing’ refers to a drop of the clear salty liquid that is secreted by the lachrymal gland of the eye to lubricate the surface between the eyeball and eyelid and to wash away irritants. Or more significantly, ‘tears’, a profusion of this liquid spilling from the eyes and wetting the cheeks, especially as an expression of emotion in the act of weeping. Interestingly, some definitions cross over to describe the ripping tear with an emotional aura such as; to become torn and distress greatly. Apply this to intimate relationships and we see yet further evidence of emotive meaning, to move with heedless speed; rush headlong or at an end of said relationship; to remove (oneself, for example) unwillingly or reluctantly or even to demolish, tear down, and disassemble. In a nasty relationship breakup there is even a tear to vilify, denigrate or attack with great vigor or violence. ¹

In the proposed image, a female figure will actively rip away her environment from the bottom left of the composition so the torn paper will be held by her two dimensional hands. The torn Tabaimo inspired wallpapered background sheet of her environment will reveal yet more patterned wallpaper design. The void from the tear will reveal a third printed surface of Pat Steir inspired splashes. The mediums employed are collograph prints with viscosity rolls and chine colle for the patterned wall-paper-like surfaces. However relief printing will also be presented in the form of the silkscreen portrait in 2-4 colour layers and the backing sheet splashes will be achieved with single layer silkscreen also. The format is a study of a much larger work yet to follow but will be bleed-printed on the one large sheet in a grid-like format hanging as a vertical rectangle.

Finished Work:

The three pieces were hung on a string evocative of a clothes line…Again the inside/outside recurring motif appears and quite by chance…its an extremely amateur way to hang work but I decided to leave it for its clear reference to the domestic. The center work was intended as the final piece with the two flanking artworks as studies. I decided to present all of them as they were somewhat resolved on their own.




Tabaimo, Wall Paper, 2004


Tabaimo’s ,Wallpaper 04, 2009. Lithograph, screen print, flocking and acrylic piece as a detail of a much larger body of work spanning multiple disciplines, has inspired a response lasting the entire year thus far (see presentation for last semester work). This exploration is a continuation of personal and student work although the aesthetic this time is more directly aligned to hers. The theoretical and critical issues that underpin her work include ‘the domestic sphere and the human body as mundane sites which in fact conceal surreal, comical, and grotesque goings-on. For Tabaimo, they are sites that must be excavated, with layers peeled away, to reveal the truth of what lies beneath the polite surface. Exposing a dense network of veins, vessels, and organs pulsating underneath its smooth façade.’ ² There are many similarities between the proposed work and Tabaimo’s domestic aesthetic through repeated patterning and ripping elements however her biological interest with the vein-like printing revealed on the underside of the top layer is absent in my work.
Pat Steir makes her marks by ‘flinging, pouring, and dripping paint. Images of waterfalls resulted naturally from this approach. Steir has said that she makes her work with the attitude of a gymnast, “first the meditation, then the leap.” ³there is definitely a metaphysical/universal quality to her work and has even been linked to Ancient Greek Philosophy through ‘philosopher Heraclitus, you can’t step into the same river twice. This aphorism might apply to Pat Steir’s series of waterfall prints as well; although her approach is similar in all of them, each is unique’. ⁴ Interestingly, an existing image made in 2012 during student painting experimentations is extremely similar to Steir’s work. I will follow her process of turning this image into a negative and exposing it onto a silkscreen.
An approach to the domestic subject in Tabaimo and the waterlike reference in Steir’s work have distinct similarities in both subject and aesthetics to my proposed piece. Although the intentions of each artist differs in content and crucial theoretical frameworks it will be clear in the final work, that inspiration emerged from research into these two women. It should be noted however, that I sought these artists out due to their relationship to my existing practice, thematic, and recurring motifs within the emotive and domestic spheres.


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Posted by on November 13, 2014 in PRINT MAKING


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