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Richard Brooks - Reflective Journal

About the Artist RWB Journal

My work is informed by my personal faith, sense of vulnerability, bereavement, and, my personal experience.

My practice centres on addressing social justice issues of the human condition. I avoid making work of any individual person; so that neither, is the individual stigmatised, nor is the work unduly personalised.

Since January 2012 I have used this blog as part of my reflective journal.
Included in this journal is some of my documentation of my research; the underlined text provides links to web pages etc that have formed part of my research.
The Research Visits category includes some responses to gallery visits.


Art Practice -Work In Progress Posted on Wed, May 02, 2012 20:36:24

I have been pleased to be able to make some adjustments to the video and I now feel more satisfied with it.

The adjustments have included:

1] Adding some additional images of the collections of detritus. This means that most of the collections of gathered items are now represented within the video.

2] Adjusting the timing of a number of the images and the positioning of some of the images of detritus etc that had already been included; such that the video now seems to me to flow better.

3] Adjusting the size of the rendered output to 1080 by 540, and making the images of detritus etc fill the space but contrasting this to the images of paused TV/DVD etc fit within the space. This has made for an improved, more consistent contrast between them.

4] The sound has also been reviewed and adjusted so that the volume and fullness audio is decreased for a time and then fades out at the end of the work.

As I am now much more satisfied with the work to date I have published a low res version of the latest rendition of the video on youtube.

Felixstowe Beach 2012-05-02

Art Practice -Work In Progress Posted on Wed, May 02, 2012 20:03:41

It was good to return to the same stretch of beach after an interval of a few weeks. I was pleased with the range of finds – that included a roof tile; twine & rope; weathered fragments of textile, plastic and metal; and a partially inflated balloon that had lodged in the groyne.

Due to the weathered nature of many of the finds they seemed to contrast with the last visit; with many of the items on this occasion appearing to be flotsam and jetsam rather than of a more local origin.

I found this visit quite therapeutic and helped to encourage, motivate and re-energise me in my work. I hope to continue such visits, but now on a more infrequent basis, every few weeks, rather than on a weekly basis.


Art Practice -Work In Progress Posted on Wed, May 02, 2012 14:44:37

This afternoon I have enjoyed continuing to work on my pamphlet and exploring positioning of the images and text in relation to one another including the reverse side of the paper – especially with regards to the title page and how the images are hinted at before the pamphlet is even opened, and how the title (in reverse) is partially visible above and below the image.

MAC – Birmingham [2012-05-01]

Research Visit Posted on Wed, May 02, 2012 11:21:49

It was good to spend a couple of hours at MAC yesterday, viewing their new artist allotment scheme – where the arena gallery has been split into 10 plots with an artist or group of artists being allocated a plot to use as an exhibition space during 2012. This would be good to be replicated in other regions; indeed I wish there was such a scheme in Norwich where perhaps the current cohort of Part Time MA Fine Art students could work together to put on a rolling program in one such plot.

In the first floor gallery there was a fantastic video installation by Tom Price Sentinals. There were three projections [man 10, man 11, and man 12 (all 2012)] that could be seen from front or back each showing a different 3min stop motion animated video of a sculptured head with minimal head movement but with the eyes moving and incredibly well done representation of blinking.

I really enjoyed the physicality of the installation and was impressed by how three complementary silent videos could fill, but not overwhelm such a large gallery space. It transformed the space into a space for meditation and exploration. I aspire to be able to make such an installation myself; to create a space for meditative contemplation where the viewer can engage with the work and the questions it raises – to create the space which could provide the opportunity for fresh insights, new horizons or priorities – i.e. for change.


Art Practice -Work In Progress Posted on Wed, May 02, 2012 10:48:26

It has been good to continue to work on this over the last few days, tweaking the text and experimenting with both, changing the size and positioning of the two images, and the positioning of the folds. I look forward to finishing my pamphlet later today.

I did contemplate uploading the pdf of my pamphlet to this blog, but currently I have decided against this, due to my preference for the physical object where the viewer has a choice of how to view it this ability is significantly reduced with a pdf.

I have maintained my desire not to make the pamphlet too precious, to avoid fetishisation, as this seems to better resonate with my current work – where I have sought not to beautify the detritus etc. Thus I have ratified my decision to make the pamphlets simply on a desk jet printer using economy printer paper, using fast draft print settings to, symbolically, use as little ink as possible.

LowTide 2012?

General Posted on Wed, May 02, 2012 10:38:58

I am somewhat disappointed that the River Ocean Research website has still not been updated and still refers to the 2011 LowTide festival as a forthcoming event on 14 May 2011. This has taken place each May, since 1995, on the Saturday with the lowest tide; it seems a great shame if this has now ceased and seems to underline the importance of asking probing social and environmental questions in general and in art in particular.