It certainly has been a crazy year. It was challenging, and 100 times harder than second year. I enjoyed second year so much because there were more projects to be explored. I was quite relax entering the first term of my final year. The subject matter I chose was something that I care and passionate about – Alzheimer’s disease/dementia issue. I find myself interested in social and cultural issues that inspire me in giving response that balances content and creativity. At first I was not sure about choosing dementia/Alzheimer’s as my subject matter because I have a personal experience where my late father passed away because of it and it is a sensitive subject. But after few tutorials, I decided that because it has a personal connection therefore it will give more weight to the content.
I started the year through in-depth research i.e. going to dementia related seminar, consultations with a Neuroscientist from Bristol University and also by becoming a Dementia Friends, as well as experimenting with thread and textile to explore the brain parts that could be damaged by Alzheimer’s disease. During the process I realised that thread means so much more than just something that connects objects but also a tool to mend and reconnect. The main process I applied within the whole project is by using soluble fabric that dissolve when washed in water. This process represents the loss of memory, personality, independence and life taken by the disease but also represents a moment of holding the time and memories that slowly disappearing.
I played around with several ideas for the outcome for my project and I feel that I need to express the loss endured everyday by patients of dementia through a multi-sensory installation that explore a bodily- experience (visions and sound). I also think that I need to communicate information about what is Alzheimer’s disease in a form of a book that feature colourful images so that it would attract public to read and understand. I aim to change the old-perception that Alzheimer’s is an age-related illness.
I also find the professional practice workshops (self-promotion) for preparing ourselves to face the real world once we finish the degree is very valuable to me. I need to build my confidence up and make more works so that I can build my professional portfolio. Including myself in group exhibition also helps me in building network and seeing what is the art world reality is. It is also a way of promoting my work and practice as an illustrator with principles. I understand that as an illustrator I want to put myself as a facilitator to communicate social & cultural issue that need to change, challenge the authority that put public’s needs behind them by being part of the change.
I’m definitely going to miss my final year. It has thought me so much about myself and things that I really care about. Things that I need to improve and even tho I has been a long journey, I have certainly grow a lot as an illustrator. I’m looking forward to my gap year and enjoy myself before planning for the future with master degree study.
I’ve decided to send separate invitation to the summer show to several organisations that I had good cooperation with, i.e. CARIAD, SURPS members & Alzheimer’s society, other artist whose work had dealt with dementia issue and also to few carer company and life org. The invitation is especially set up for them to view my work. I’ve received good responses back and hopefully I will meet few of them at preview night or at the opening which make me feel more nervous actually.
Although, by sending out personal invitation has opened up good opportunity for me to exhibit my work. One of a good response I received is from NHS gallery manager who is interested in displaying my work at their gallery. They have organised a Dementia/Memory exhibition at Llandough hospital which I will be joining from 9th May to 1st of June, 2016. This is a great opportunity to be part of dementia week and raise awareness about Alzheimer’s disease outside of university.
As a result of digital networking a.k.a. sending digital invitation to chosen organisations, I have been given an opportunity to be part of my Alzheimer’s project work in Threads: Memory in focus group exhibition at Llandough hospital gallery at University Hospital Wales in Cardiff. The show will run from 9th May to 1st June, 2016 and opening night will be on the 19th of May. I feel blessed that I’m able to participate at this exhibition as it is being held during the dementia week and I hope that my work could reach wider viewers and shine light to Alzheimer’s disease issue.
I started the prep for my exhibition by making model of the room and breakfast table for the multi-sensory installation. I could not find a perfect breakfast table model so I bought the dining set. Bellow is my model:
After a long search at few charity shops for the right furniture and online, finally I found cheap sale from Cardiff and Neath.
I will also need a specific shape of plinth for my textile/stitch book.
Wax on, Wax off and on our hands and knees. These photos are just a little snippet to our full dedication to make our exhibition FANTASTIC.
I was part of a group exhibition of 16 – 3rd year illustration students held in PAPERArts, Bristol on April 7-13th this year. Few of us went to Bristol for a pre research the location so that we could have the perfect space. We’re looking for a location that is easy to access by general public. After few discussion and voting, we agreed on PAPAERArts exhibition space located right in the city centre.
My initial plan for this external exhibition is to display a multi-sensory installation, but because I think the space could not accomodate it well I have to rethink and made a plan b. I decided to use an illustration I made from an interview session with Alzheimer’s society Cardiff.
The initial plan for this piece was A1 size compiled from 7 embroidery hoops. During the process I decided that I need to focus on what I’m trying to communicate instead of emphasising on the size and also because I do not want to include pieces that just ‘decorate’ the main piece. One thing that need to be corrected is the spelling and text which was planned to be made by thread but because I was running out of time I had to print the texts instead and stuck on foam board. Further more, I realised that this have not give the same impact and feeling that I’m looking for. Therefore for my final work, I have made the texts with thread in larger size and weight.
This was my first group exhibition experience. I’ve learnt so much from my friends, especially about promoting, logistic and all preparation side of it. Taking time and wisely accommodate ideas to decide the right theme that suits all of our work is a great way to have good exhibition. Helping out each other with logistic matter and putting up work was a lot of fun as well.
My first opening night went great, met people who are interested in my work and had chat with them about why and how I created the work. The feedback was great although my tutor pointed a spelling mistake on one of my text! Oh Gosh! but anyway I still can fix it for my degree show, so no panic!
My second involvement with LAUGH project by Prof Cathy Treadaway from CARIAD Cardiff is to document a conversation between her team and members of SURPS group & Alzheimer’s society based in Cardiff. The session outcome was very valuable and gave a lot of insight to daily life and how patients really feel about the disease and how they cope with it.
Here’re sketches from the session:
Inspired by Greyson perry’s The Annunciation of the Virgin Deal and David Hockney’s photo collage composition, I’ve made design as one of the final outcome of my project. The work is hand embroidery on different sizes of hoops, put together to look like a collage and texts to highlight the conversation. I chose the colour to be bright because I think it is important to lift the mood and as a reflection of the patients’ life.
Bellow is the 1st finished version illustration shown for Within/Without group exhibition at PaperArts, Bristol. I have made the text into 3D texts using thread to give more impact to the work for Summer show.Further more, I have prepare stitch text which I’m going to display for the degree show.