Finished Wire Turtle
These images are of my completed wire turtle. Strong elements of the completed turtle are its shape, structure and overall character. I think the shape worked well as I followed images of turtles for guidance, and it looks successful from all angles. This was something I was initially worried about, as I have more experience from working on a two-dimensional scale. I enjoyed creating the structure the most as I found the repetitive pattern of winding the wire around and around both calming and productive. Once I had the initial frame created using the thick wire, I used thinner wire to add both detail, texture and stability to the turtle. Viewing the turtle makes me feel quite emotional, which may seem strange. I think it is because of the vulnerability it evokes, held together by thin wire. My intention to go further with the turtle at this stage is to use found material such as strips of disposable masks to weave through the wire. This would make an ironic statement on how the things that kill and hurt the turtles, are actually producing the turtle in this case.
This workshop was possibly my favourite I have taken part in. As instructed from the last session, we had to write about 50 characteristics, appearance and habits describing an imaginary animal. I will describe my own animal in the following paragraph. I enjoyed listening to my peers imagined animals immensely. It was so fun to hear how everyone responded differently to the task. Some were clearly inspired by their projects, and some seemed to be modelled after their own personality. I loved the way each person described their animal – some made a PowerPoint presentation with visuals. Others read out their list. Some seemed more of an interview with us asking questions about the animal. It is clear from this workshop that with each of us, the line between human and animal is becoming increasingly blurred.
My animal was modelled after an animal which could defeat all humans. It was inspired by my project, as I have become so dissatisfied with the selfish nature and cruelty of humans towards both the environment, and animals. Although I wrote the information down on my brown paper, I compiled it into a short description which I think is very effective.
An animal with a sense of destiny, a mission. He has evolved to see the future – his purpose is to make a change. He is responsive to what is around him; he is a thinker, and so is wary and prepared for any attack. This animal is smart – he understands the threat is not from other animals, but people – poachers and thieves, who think they have the advantage over the four-legged. Not this animal, he is defensive and cunning, and can fight back against this developing evil. The animal is protective of all his fellow four-legged, winged or webbed friends – being of these physical attributes himself – and is a vegan, much preferring to eat plants than his friends.
This animal has presence in the world; he is alert and intelligent, with strength in both character and physical form. He is often found changing this physical form to protect himself in any situation, a chameleon of a sort, hidden from predators. Most often, his physical form is supple, wiry and lithe, with short hair, which allows him to move rapidly. Deft, agile, fast and swift are words which those who get the chance to witness him describe, as he races past them. His muscular, long body, with its powerful tail make him invincible against threat. This animal is also sharp-toothed and clawed, giving him an extra advantage over the weak two-legged. Although these attributes give him physical strength, the animal is also graceful and patient; eagle-eyed with pricked ears, he waits with stillness for the next threat against his kind. His species is called Alexandros Kreatura.
It makes me feel quite emotional that such an animal will never exist. This is no fault of animal kind, but instead a statement on how strange our lives as humans has become. How can any animal have a chance against a human with a gun, a car, or a knife. It is saddening, and reminds me again how important it is to be a voice and a protector for animals.
The task for next week is to create an idea for a collaborative workshop we can do together based off any or all of the four elements discovered so far – animal, the brown paper, the brown label or the vial. I am excited to see what I come up with, but I think I will definitely try to use my vial as this has not yet been touched.
During this tutorial I made some big changes to my project. I began by reflecting on what I have done so far, and what I liked about it. This was mainly the wire turtle, and the symbolism behind it. The way in which the wire seems to protect the turtle, makes it safe and shrouds it from danger. This is something turtles do not have out in the wild, they are unprotected and open to human threat.
One of my biggest concerns with my wire turtle is that although my intention was to use found plastic materials weaved around the structure, the wire itself was purchased, thus contributing to the problem I am trying to raise awareness of. Miranda suggested I use either just wire, or just plastic materials but not both. My plan for next week is to experiment with this, making a turtle out of completely found plastic materials. My initial plan for the Spring Show and my final outcome is to either create a time lapse video of some form, or an installation with the animals I create.
I think I will stay with the turtle, as I think focusing on just one animal may be more powerful in the end. I will reflect on this more in the following week.