Project Evaluation ? From Beer Street to Gin Lane and back again.
1. How do you envisage your entrance to and exit from the space?
I would be there the whole time.
2. How long does the transition from one Street to the other last and what moments are there to pause for a Live Tableaux?
It takes about 5 mins to transition from one to the other in this order:
The Pawn shop owner and wife (Anne and Ella) emerge from the door (Maj's dress). Lizzie plays Arrival of the Queen of Sheba by Handel.
Anne and Ella walk around the audience haughtily, Anne brandishes a stick. At the Same time Lizzie (me) helps Maj change to Beer St.
When they return Anna opens her coat and Lizzie performs with a puppet through both pocket holes. The puppet knocks on the door of the pawn shop on each side of the coat.
Lizzie rips parts of Ella's dress away while saying e.g. "give it back!" she gives these bits to the audience and also empties the shop and gives the objects away. There are labels on the objects explaining how they were 'lost' in the the first place which the audience reads.
By this time we have all transformed in our various ways and there is a pause. when the 'rave' performance starts on the other side we go around the audience and gather these things back, and Maj changes back to her Gin Lane outfit.
3. How will you deal with re-staging the performance three times?
All of our costumes, props etc return to their original place by the end of the performance.
Sustainability (Waste Off):
1. What materials have you used and why? Can you think of ways this could have been done more successfully and sustainable?
I have used second hand shelves, second hand gloves from Ebay, scrap wool from Oxfam, scrap ribbon that I had already, an antique spoon from Camden Market and scrap card found on the street. I bought a recycled paper diary and borrowed things wherever I could.
I think if I had had more time I could have sourced for example second hand paint (though I didn't buy any new just for this project), but I think most of the things I used were sustainable and I will give the objects away as gifts so they won't be thrown away.
2. In what way does your project contain challenges mentioned in the Waste Off brief set by the UAL?
See above, I think that I kept as close to the waste off brief as possible, I did find it hard because it all took a lot longer than it would if I had just ordered everything on Amazon!
3. In how far can your project live on after the performance?
I think this project would work well as an installation in it's own right, this is how I originally imagined it though we had to adapt it to fit in a performance. The time frame would be longer and I would actually be making the objects as part of the installation. (See the drawing above for an explanation). I want to do more audience-engaged/ socially-engaged art.
4. How are you evidencing your consciousness of sustainability? (e.g. Have you got a separate Waste Off page on Workflow?)
I have a separate page on Workflow showing how I sourced and made my work.
1. What research have you undertaken and how has this fed into the development of ideas?
I went to the Hogarth exhibition at the Cartoon Museum and saw more of his work. I was interested in The Fortunes and Mis-fortunes of the Famous Moll Flanders - this was definitely aimed at trying to stop terrible things befalling women who started out with similar hopes to Moll who moved to London to be a seamstress but fell into ruin and prostitution.
I also visited the Victoria and Albert Museum 1750-1800 galleries. This helped me find out about objects from the period, however there weren't many which connected to ordinary people, it was all aristocratic belongings.
I spoke to many people I know to gather stories of objects they had lost and wished they hadn't. This really fed into my ideas because I realised the emotion that is created when someone looses something. The object even becomes more valuable after it is gone. I decided to remake these as my own 'social intervention' and try to make the world a little bit better like Hogarth did with his work.
I looked into how to make certain items, for example for the spoon ring I found a tutorial online and visited the metalworking workshops at the Archway campus.
I have been reading Relational Aesthetics by Nicolas Bourriaud which has fed into my conceptual thinking and also been reading about artist who do community work.
2. Identify an artist / designer who you admire and whose work has influenced you on this project and explain how.
Ceramic artist Clare Twomey who did this installation at the Foundling Museum. Hogarth actually helped found the orphanage on that site. I liked this piece of work because it is interactive, challenging and makes people think about their own motives and cares and how they can make society better. Though I think I like the ideas in it more that the way it looks.
1. In what way have you considered the original underlying purpose of satire in the Hogarth prints? What makes Hogarth's work relevant to today?
Hogarth was a philanthropist. this can be seen in his patronage of the Foundling Hospital and also in his prints and paintings that often have a moral purpose - to educate people as to better decisions and to help them improve their lives. Art that makes a positive impact on communities and individuals is still very relevant today.
2. In what way have you developed your ideas from the original prints by Hogarth?
I did the interior of the pawn shop which can't be seen in the prints, it is mysterious. I imagined it as a place of loss, and so I developed on this theme.
3. How have you incorporated the idea of transition into your design?
The shop is emptied and items restored to the public (audience) during my performance. I also hoped that people would write on tags and add stories of their own losses to the shop at the end of the performance, filling it with loss again.
Planning and Reflection:
1. Identify three moments where you have solved a theoretical or practical problem through research or experimentation with materials.
I found a set of shelves I could use on Freecycle. However when I saw them they were way too heavy and I had no way of transporting them. In the end after searching the area, I found a much lighter set of shelves and could transport it on a skateboard!
I had no way of knowing exactly what was in the diary - one of the objects I re-made - however, I read several blog posts from the same time and practiced the owner's handwriting. I didn't attempt to write emotional, personal info as I felt this would be difficult ethically, I rewrote excerpts from the blogs and left spaces for her to add personal thoughts in her own time.
My design couldn't be performed in the time period I imagined (over several days) so we adapted it to fit the performance and also made it look more period style to fit with the other pieces in my group.
2. In what way have you managed your time effectively?
I did as much as I could! I also took time off work for the performance. I think it also helped having a whole week of making time in the week before the performance.
3. How have you managed the roles within your collaboration?
We kept in touch via Facebook messenger and made sure we knew who each person would be and what they were working on for the performance. We made notes (see above) outlining the performance and how we interacted with each other.
© Elizabeth Kendal, all rights reserved