Box End

An edition of five boxed works are with Partners & Spade, New York and will be in the space and on the website in the next few weeks. Meanwhile, my set of five packing tapes are now available at Chandelier Creative's Limited Editions shop.

The boxes have been more or less a year in the making, tracked through this blog. As a consequence, a document of cul-de-sacs and iterations. The piece is sequential, fiddly in the way it pieces together but also in the way it was conceived. Maybe the most significant outcome for me is quite a changed methodology — or one that taps a more natural vein.

This was the last decision, like each previous in its way realigning the perceived function of the box. Spares, by-products, leftovers to leave with the user but also to take into the next one. This one, I recalled at the end, was dimensionally conditioned by the found envelope. These envelopes were purchased from Inno twelve years ago, when we lived in Brussels. I've used them here and there, feeling they were always important. Only have a few left and need to replenish. Odd how cheap, ephemeral items can assume such indispensability.



Forest Marks, Love is Enough, Utopia

A month or so ago, my Camberwell group visited the London Metropolitan Archive, the Guildhall Art Gallery and library, brokered by Adrian Holme. A day leafing through and opening up fascinating documents of — and belonging to — the City of London.

The LMA is, simply put, London's archive. Kilometres of shelving in strong rooms, holding miscellany reaching back to a small piece paper, a 1067 decree by William the Conqueror (or the Bastard as he was known at the time).

We spent some time with boxes brought up from the archive, related to Adrian's seminars this year. What became clear, is the impossibility of a definitive record. Through the conservator's studio and here, we handled Victorian concertina'd paper viewfinders of the Crystal Palace, a scrapbook belonging to an employee of Horniman's Tea, photographs of crowds esconced in banter and singalong, in Bethnal Green tube station during an air raid, hand-coloured architectural plans and sections of a works. It's clear there were reams of more linear records but the unpredictable truth-telling of these things detained us.

I enjoyed the Epping Forest box.

The Guildhall library presented an opportunity to handle two amazing, original Kelmscott Press editions in a limp vellum binding. This, Morris' Love is Enough (1897), with illustrations by Edward Burne-Jones. A full 100-page scan here.

And Thomas More's Utopia (1893). Note the yapp edges. Also seen here.


The stick that moved on its own

A new work, He dared not tell them about the stick that moved on its own. Dimensions 420 x 300 x 20mm. Plywood, four-colour risograph print with die-cuts and found fixings, shelves, erasers. It's exhibited as a part of Questioning Print, now at Kemistry Gallery, curated by the very good 40/04 — Alex Hough, Jake Hopwood and Charlie Abbott.

The title follows the work's bitty ethic, taken from the 'Golden Pleasure Book' series of 'The Gold Star Library', 1967. I'm wanting to find each time something insolubly wrong in the pulling together of title, print and things on a kind of peg-board which would suggest compositional harmony.

The picture element is intended to be explanatory of something incidental or unimportant or ephemeral or momentary, observed first-hand.

I'm thinking about how these can operate on a wall, at different proportions and scale. The shelf aspect is particularly interesting at the moment.