[ WORK BEFORE :: THIS BEGAN ]
The female 'drag' photos; 'Winehouse', 'Britney', 'Kate'.
Using two TED.com talks, John Q Walker's 'Re-creating great performance' and Barry Schwartz's 'The Pardox of Choice'.
I used idolized celebrities that have had extreme fame and there public life's exposed. Having the media build there fame to such a high degree, being only human they slip-up damaging our persona of there character. I re-created these acts in question, performing with a photographer documenting the scene as they act as paparazzi. Using three different photographers for each scandal. In all , if we had low expectation then we'd have happier lives as everything would be an unsuspecting surprise.
NATURE AS CULTURE
I was interested in the human condition and used autobiographical story telling through the practice of performance art. Examining mother and child relationships as human nature, using my own cultural up bringing as inspiration. The characters I played were real people, generalized into hard hitting Glaswegian stereotypes.
Mixing the traditional with contemporary practices I was able to use two new materials - film and etching, to my repertoire of skills. Using classical themes of art into modern aesthetics such as tronies, I worked with traditional practice such as Etch-making into a contemporary ethos of edition printing, seen as a invention to have many of the same art works - for less wealthy family's to have art in their home. The aspect of poverty in Glasgow being the highest in Britain made me want to have a etching of a family portrait as tronies. The aesthetic of the prints were borrowed from Ken Currie's, ' Battle-field ' Etching that i purchased in the summer.
Fighting Bobby 2 min, 35.
Fighting Bobby is a story of a young Glaswegian tee age boy, who has recently befriended a local gang. ''Fighting Bobby'' documents, a visit from the police to Bobby's home. Straight talking Mary invites the men in, to find out there visit is about her son. Confused and argumentative Mary tries to pin point the blame away from her son Bobby. We are left unsure of the outcome, only Mary's glassy eyes stair out the window.
''Mother'' is a character from ''Fighting Bobby'', Bobby's mother, Mary. Mary was a Govan child and shows the scars from her up-bringing. The character shows the personality of a woman we all know in our own lives. Developed as a character that emulates, 'ugly' as a theme such as Leonardo De Vinci's "Grotesque Heads".
Madonna is the character from "Fighting Bobby", his sister. We view Chantalle as a 17th Century Neo-Classical dutch tronie. With the added layer of also being a pregnant Glaswegian teenage ned, A modern day Madonna with child.
I made another video but I'm still working on it but its called , "MUMMY DONT DIE" Me and my mother performed in it speaking french in thick Glaswegian assents. Both of us hadn't a clue how to pronounce anything so it added the juxtaposition of hilarious and bewildered. It was about a young girl who is discovering her sexuality - Her mother reveals that She is dying and in bereavement the daughter tries to kill herself.
The reason I made this was because me and my mother are morbidly obsessed with death and 'what would happen' if one of us died. There were several reasons for the french speaking dialogue, I wanted a ambiguous story where your more focused on the character's reactions and facial expressions. Not knowing the language fluently - we thickened our Glaswegian assents to make the language broken, So if a french speaking person was to watch it they would understand the dialogue. So to help the french speaking - I put on french sub-titles.
I made an Marina Abramovic - Rhythm 10 type performance named '' SLAP IN THE FACE [ ROSS IS GAY ] " Laying out ten books on various subjects; Bullying, Dyslexia, Feminism, Queer Theory and Literature. I sat behind the books awaiting for the first whack to the face by somewhere from the audience and such people would follow in on the performance. I never told anyone the level of volume or pressure to use, but I told one or two people what to do to start it off. The performance was about how I only read art books, So when people talk about there favorite book it's a hard thing for me to take that I don't read literature. Which made me link themes that exclude one thing from another or I'v felt has excluded me from certain groups.
ACT OF VIOLENCE
Following with my interests in the human condition and using my own autobiographical experiences, amplified to tell a story of extreme violence through the practice of painting, performance art and video. My intention is to examine acts of violence - physical, sexual and on reflection - mental abuse.
Drawing reference from the Renaissance battle scenes as well as contemporary themes such as 'drunken adolescent fights' spun into a more horrific performance of 'gang rape'.
As well as exploring the context of violence, the act of violence we have as artist is a powerful subject, making Anti-Portraits in such a phrase - portraits that the viewer is given every element for a direct connection with a sitter minus one key component, ripping away the eyes. Blinding the sitter from emoting with a subject - Delete the eyes and the viewer is left distant and un-stimulated, echoing the mental repercussions of the assault paintings. Mixing the traditional / historical reference with contemporary practices / themes, will leave viewers stimulated even if the work is about having a distance with the art or a indifferent effect of not wanting to know.
The aesthetic I am looking for is a modern Neoclassic grandeur and overall glow about the paint - for the large scale fight / rape paintings. Additional produce a series of A5 scale anti portrait paintings which are investigating silence, mortality as well a violence, and orgasm. The idea for the process was a detailed mono-chrome under painting with opaque colour splashed on top primarily the colour scheme of red and blue - reflecting the under layer like tracing paper.
I was also in an art exhibition event called ''Underground'', doing the student thing and having a art event in a car-park.
I did a performance from the same theme - act of violence, Making an instillation in the middle of the car-park of an artist's studio - made from transparent plastic I slashed windows echoing the performance of slashing away the eyes of my A0 self-portrait. The performance related to Joseph Beuy's ''I Love America, and America Loves Me'', Tracey Emin's ''Exorcism of the Last Painting I Ever Made'' and Paul McCarthy ''Painter''. But it was more in the ball park of frustrated artist in studio with people watching - So I spat paint towards the audience and started a intense manic. Destroying my studio ending the performance by coming out the instillation and doing a lap round the car-park in 5inch heels.
Posted by ROSS FLEMING