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Katy Nelson~ Week 11

Notebook Presentations

In the lesson this week, we had to present our 10 weeks-worth of notebooks to the rest of the group. I was feeling more positive about the second presentation after reflecting on the feedback I had received on my proposal form presentation, as I felt I had a clear set of things to actively try and improve on. I think that it went well, I spoke from a less structured script which allowed me to expand on my notebook posts in a more natural and understandable way, and I also focused on facing more towards my audience and making occasional eye contact to keep people engaged. My notebooks this semester have been significantly longer and more detailed than my one in semester 1, as I have put a lot more research and experimentation towards developing my project towards my final idea. For this reason, and because I was conscious of the 10-minute time constraint, I did not speak about many artists that I had researched during the duration of my project, as I felt that my most important developments and realizations came from other areas, such as my reading during the earliest weeks of the semester. I managed to finish speaking through my posts with one minute to spare, which I used to show people more of the photographs I had collected of butterflies throughout the project. Overall, I think that my presentation went well and I came out of it feeling proud of myself for making an improvement on last time. I think that I covered the most significant points in the development of my project and clearly showed the meaning behind my installation as well as it’s importance to me.


My Finished Installation~ ‘Obscured Rebirth’

My Conclusion on my Project in The TAKEOVER…

My project, ‘Obscured Rebirth’, was displayed as part of The TAKEOVER 2023 exhibition at the Aberystwyth Arts Centre on Tuesday 9th May. After having already installed my project in the School of Art briefly, in order to take the photographs required for my proposal form, I had a clear idea of how to re-install it into my chosen location at the Arts Centre, the conical entrance room to the Round Studio. My sister, who is also a student, was kind enough to come down to help me set up my project. We had just hung the spiral from three points around the room, when the fishing line decided to snap and so we had to start again. This was frustrating, as we were on such a tight timeframe before the 11am opening of the show, but I managed to keep my head and we successfully hung the spiral and then the butterflies. Originally, in both my drawn plan and my proposal form photographs, I had placed two white studio lights on opposing sides of my project, to provide enough lighting to see the detail of my wax sculpture and to also make it easy to navigate around. However, the daylight that was coming through the roof’s skylight, combined with the semi-circle of lights from above provided a natural and heavenly source of light, that cast some beautiful shadows of the hanging butterflies down onto the plinth and sculpture of Cherry. My sister, Mike and Miranda all agreed that this was perfect, and any additional light sources would be too much, so I stuck with it. The addition of Cherry’s wings since the images on my proposal form, I feel, really brought the piece together and made the thoughts behind it clearer and more connected.

Throughout the duration of the takeover, I received lots of positive feedback from a lot of friendly visitors. Thinking demographically, most of the women that I spoke to were between 40 and 70 years old and emphasized their appreciation of the cute sculpture, as well as the beauty of the taxidermy butterflies- some could not tell if they were real specimens as they appeared so delicate and lightweight. Additionally, (and this was something that stood out to me as a real success), I also got positive feedback from a male demographic who had seen my work on the tour. This was significant in making me feel I had achieved something, as at the start of the semester I had stated my aim to create a project that would resonate with a broader socio-demographic audience, and this feedback proved to me that my efforts had paid off in that regard. Everyone that reached out to me on the day said how much they loved the shadows cast down of the butterflies, and how pretty they looked as they danced around in the draft created as people moved through the space. This was important to me, the mobility of the deceased insects created a captivating sense of aliveness, just as I had hoped.

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