Pt 2 Research

Sharp S(2017) Fred Wilson teaches us how to pay attention. [online in Hyperallergenic 14th February 2017] available here. [accessed 23rd September 2017]

Lisa Milroy. 2017. Lisa Milroy. [ONLINE] Available at: [Accessed 24 September 2017].

Paul Westcombe. 2017. Used Paper Coffee Cups. [ONLINE] Available at: [Accessed 23 September 2017].[24th September 2017].

This part starts off more theoretical and I’ve ordered the book from Amazon uk instead of .com so I’m actually doing the book review for this part before the book for the previous part has made it over the pond.

I’ve chosen Walter Benjamin because Freud makes me mad. As a starting point to a conversation in a pub I can see he still has his merits but thats it. I’d rather the referencing was from someone who came after him, reviewed his ideas and came up with something that reflects where we are at now over a view from Freud’s era using less incendiary language. Rewrite freud call it rewritten Freud leaving out some of the unnecessary penis referencing and I’ll read it.

The book will get a separate post. (

Fred Wilson’s work has a great impact for me even though his creation is in the curation over the actual items on display. The act of re-organising a museums contents away from the dominant local historical recollection to show an alternative and more uncomfortable history is thought provoking. His reorganisation showed the past of people who had been overlooked through objects that where not prized and as a result cared for in the way some objects were. This is an exhibition I would have liked to have seen.

Lisa Milroy’s displays of objects that seem to represent a point in time, (shoes 1988) shoes ordered into pairs and neatly placed into formation, ladies shoes, pointed and heeled, decorated and colourful or shiny and black. painted in oils with highlights and shadows to represent actual presence. For the regular uniformity of the shoes within the picture, I would have thought each pair would be directly under Milroy’s nose to paint instead of all laid out, this would work better with perspective. varying in size up to a couple of metres, the impact of these on a wall must be quite marked. Painted on a white background there is a serene feel to the work which must help with the size not making the space the picture is in as overpowering. They are a show of femininity within an everyday object. There is no way of knowing if they are her shoes, if they represent something she aspires to or resents or if it is just a collection of shoes. just another of her collections of objects.

Lisa has done a series of collections that are vastly different to each other. each series contains multiple pictures of a placed collection (door handles, lightbulbs) some contain a random messy painting that I think says more than the others. the informal display is more personal to me it appeals to the way the world is over how it gets presented.

I picked these two artists because their choice of collection/ curation seemed linked. Lisa’s collections of non offensive items talk of an era, a style of what was available in the 80’s. I wonder at what those pictures would look like now if they where to be repainted. Wilson changes the nature of that which we view, as much as the objects show a history, he shows us an alternative history that may not reflect the one we where brought up with. They both record a very real history through objects which I find intriguing.

I asked to be sent a picture of 3 things from someones workspace that are tools to do your employment, or you have around you to help remind you who you are or why you do the job. I’ve had 2 responses so far and I want this to grow into a series that is a catalogue of what people feel is important to them. I am not responsible for the object choice or display, only the recoding of it and in specifying the content overall. I like working in series, an idea generally has more than 1 conclusion on paper for me these days.

Paul Westcombe draws onto used coffee cups. It looks like a habit that hasn’t been thrown away over time rather than a concerted effort to create a collection. His densely packed images some coloured in strongly some more subtly some not at all. To me they represent a brain dump in pen that utilises something that was going to end up in the bin. Some of the imagery is disconcerting, holes in peoples faces, disconnected body parts. However I like the idea of using something you wouldn’t necessarily associate with art. I work in a school and we use anything and everything so I thought I would try painting on paper plates.


Now I didn’t think about who I was painting on the plate over the fact I had a found photo I thought would look interesting in circular form, however, the irony of painting Nigella Lawson on a food container is not lost on me, however I haven’t really found the impetus to push this line of research any further…

External to this as a member of Salisbury Plain arts I am taking part in an exploration through art of the collections at Arundell House within the cathedral grounds, I am sketching areas and items that represent an aspect of the many interesting items carefully placed around the building and curated in their own way. I’ll hopefully post back in a couple of months with my final solution.




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