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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.

BMAG 20 April 2013

Research Visit Posted on Wed, April 24, 2013 18:37:00

I was pleased to be able to see the Metropolis: Reflections on the modern city show at Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery last Saturday.

I have since found a useful press release pdf from Birmingham Museums

The personal highlights included works that seem to resonate with my current project, these included:

Christiane Baumgartner, Ladywood, [2010, (video 4m 36s)]

Nicolas Provost, Storyteller, [2011, (video projection 7m, 30s)]

Beat Streuli, Pallasades, [2001, (video 45min looped)] it was good to see this again, having seen it at Beath Struli show at Ikon in January. It plays tricks on the mind/eye as one expects people to cross from one screen to the other – but they do not which makes it strangely compelling as one drawn in to the details of the videos.

Yang Zhenzhong, Let’s Puff, [2002, Two screen digital projection] This was really effective and the production values were excellent, in particular the synchronisation of the two parts was exquisite.

Grazia Toderi, Orbite Rosse (Red Orbits), [2009, Two channel video installation] This was impressive and had a wow factor, it felt like an experience not merely a viewing. I aspire to be able show a work with such impact.

Mohamed Bourouissa, L’impasse (the dead end), [2007, Lambda print on aluminium]

Gardar Eide Einarsson, Untitled Landscape (Tear Gas Canisters), [2012, inkjet on aluminium]. This reinforced my inclination to experiment with producing black and white photographs as inkjet prints on aluminium to explore the comparative luminosity of such prints as compared to inkjet prints on paper and darkroom prints using traditional silver gelatine photographic paper.

Jochem Hendricks, Front Windows, [2009, Video projection, 6min]

As well as the Metropolis show I was also impressed by Hughie O’Donoghue’s, Three Studies for a Crucifixion I, [1996, Carborundum print], and was moved to study them more closely and to discover the more about the work.



Construction Distraction Group show at NUA 15 to 19 April 2013

Art Practice -Work In Progress Posted on Wed, April 24, 2013 09:19:14

This was a very useful and positive experience – working together with 2 other MA Fine Art students, Dina & Claire. We all had our own particular concerns, things we wanted to experiment or try; and yet the show worked well together, with plenty of space to best show the works. Our work seemed to work well together and to start a further conversation.

I was able to try printing on clear adhesive vinyl that can be applied directly to the wall, as I have been impressed by a number of exhibitions at Ikon, Birmingham, where the pictures have been stuck straight on the wall.

I was pleased with the glossy clear vinyl, the detail in the images was retained and it successfully rendered the allusion of a false perspective – almost as if viewing the vista through a window on which a game of noughts and crosses had been painted with vermilion coloured acrylic paint.

I had tried printing both two grids of 20 images and one large rendition of a single image. All the painted photographs were scanned at a resolution to make prints same size as original and then I rescanned a small number at a much higher resolution so that a large print, up to size A00 could be made. This was very definitely experimental, I was doubtful how well a 10 by 15cm print would scan and print at 60cm by 90cm but I was really pleased by how well it did actually work. However I had expected the impact of the pair of grids to be greater than they were – these worked less well than I had hoped and anticipated.

It was also good to be able to try out a 58 minute video that included seascapes, chocolate milk drink, log fires in a wood-burning stove, and brief extracts of counting rice-cripsies. I was particularly pleased with how the log fires projected, with the flickering orange from the flames effecting the whole space. I received some positive feedback about the peaceful seascapes, which I found particularly encouraging as it supports my intention to make contemplative work.