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Lena A Tomasik – Week 3,4 and 5 19.07.2023

Sculpting, painting, drawing and walking.

A headspace/little word vomit, update on the last three weeks.

To start I am realising my relationship with the posting scheduled is terrible. And now an honest reflection/lesson, my stress about the work and not posting is not going to go away by not doing what is required of me. So moving forward into these last 5 weeks and as a midway point I am going to set aside a scheduled time to curate my posts and to hopefully achieve a weekly update of these last five weeks. Today also feels like a symbolic day for me as it is exactly a month since my birthday. I month into my own individual year. This has made me see that time is not slowing down at all despite maybe my expectation of it slowing down now that the term is over and that summer is here, NOW more then ever I feel the need to set challenges and to keep the promises I made to myself.


WEEK 3 28.06.2023-04.07.2023

To start this week I once again went on a walk, the practice of walking has become somewhat ritualistic to me. It helps to clear my head but it also is a great source of random inspiration. Especially walking in Maidenhead an area which I grew up in. On my walk I passed a old shortcut that I used to go through when walking into town centre. It stood out to me as we used to call it the Goblin Alley way. Simply because my mother would tell me every time we would walk through to never walk here alone otherwise a Goblin would come and snatch me up! I do want to clarify that I was a very young child, but, this fear tactic worked. I never would walk through the alley alone. But as time passed and I grew up and would sometimes cycle through, however, I could hear my mothers warning and find myself cycling through with great speed. Then with more time, when I would finally start to walk through I would find myself checking behind for these Goblins. Now, I can see that she was just protecting us from potential danger as we can all understand how a Alley-Way could be a dangerous place. But I am shocked for how long these Goblins haunted my mind and in some ways they still do as the memory of those conversations emerge simply by passing the alleyway by.

Living in fear of a threat that is not real, but, blissfully unaware of the true danger.

Returning home I then started to paint, I am starting to realise how wasteful of a practice art is. How much paper, canvas that are used once and then never used again. Sitting with a painting that means nothing but is a symbol of that point in time. So to start I just picked a random painting to work with. In my practice I try to work with the paint, letting go of control, now, in this painting I did the same. Asking:

What do you want to become?

I used a mixture of different methods, removing, adding, painting, sculpting with my hands. But in the end the painting became nothing. No composition, not successful in anyway. I can feel my pressure and frustrations growing maybe I am no longer painting with freedom but frustration, restrictions, mindlessness and all of this externalised pressure to capture my masterpiece.

I had to stop and put it down, move on and come back. (I’ve yet to come back to it I’m sure the time will come but for now it will continue to collect some cat hair and dust) In a attempt to heal my ego a little I started a new painting, one with more direction, aka some references pulled from my camera roll. A cluster of images that represent points of time that bring me some joy.

The images that I mainly added where the butchering of a whole roasted pig from a wedding I attended of the 24th of June and of my friend Ben holding out a little cracker creation with great joy. I then filled in the spaces with what felt right. Like including a nude women. I like to work with the nude form as well as adding in small phallic details- there is a level of absurdity when you work with phallic images which I personally am finding more and more joy from. This is where I left this painting- I feel with oil painting sometimes there is a level of abandonment.


In week 2 I took and image of a car that had a tarp bound around it:

What stands out to me is the string that bounds the tarp so tightly onto the Beetle (I also want to add that the car underneath being a beetle makes me as a beetle owner very happy) from this i started to make my own sculptures using bin liners and string to pull, tie knots and play.

I then decided that I was not doing my little sculptures justice and made a little photoshoot space to take better images: I want to also clarify that the sculptures are from one bin bag, the images are taken at different points of manipulation from the string and bin liner and my action of pulling apart the liner.

To me they feel like bound figures.

I then used the images as a point of reference for a painting:

WEEK 4: Movies, A few more layers, a tutorial and a new piece:

This week I got thrown into the world of 70s cinema. Specifically watching ‘The Holy Mountain’ 1973 by Alejandro Jodorowsky and ‘The House’ 1977 by Nobuhiko Obayashi. I really like this era of cinema, the production cost is small and they feel like works of art, the movies have the directors soul in them. It also reminded me that some things work in there simplicity.

I also had my tutorial with Miranda, this was a very needed conversation as it gave me the confidence to keep going and that what I am doing is good.

I also added anther layer onto my painting:


I can imagine myself as a pig carcass hung on a hook. What difference is there? When my mind is so empty all that’s left is the flesh.

Writing based off the painting:

‘And, if you want a spectacle, I will display myself for you. Just like meat, brought, viewed, eaten. No different to pork. Call me a pig. Call me a cow. Call me anything you want. But a woman? My name? Never.

Displayed here, view me, take as long as you want. I’m still, fallen, frozen in time. I’m not going anywhere’.

I had to leave my painting here as I moving to Portsmouth for the next 10 days… I wonder how a pair of fresh eyes will view the painting.

Ida Applebroog:

1 thought on “Lena A Tomasik – Week 3,4 and 5 19.07.2023”

  1. The wrapped car, the bin bag sculptures, the documentary photographs of the sculptures, and the paintings made in response to the bin bag sculptures is a coherent body of work, the beginning of an interesting and exciting exploration, there is a clear line running through your thinking, the connections are visible and tangible. The flesh/pig/body painting is another exploration, the alley way is a potential other avenue. At this stage you need to pick one, the first is more appropriate to I.P as you are exploring more than one discipline at a time, following a line of enquiry beyond one given medium. The painting is strong but perhaps fits more neatly into your painting practice. Did you respond positively to Ida Applebroog? reflect on your research into her work in your notebook, for example – did you respond to how she moved from one medium to another, adding, and subtracting as she explored her hunches? The aim here is to mine an idea, dig deep into one line of enquiry, the rewards will come to you if you do that, if you can allow the materials, the forms, the compositions to develop then they will surprise you, eventually the work will lead you, you will find yourself following what the work wants and needs, and so you will feel less self conscious, but you need to give an exploration time and commitment, you need to nurture the small outcomes, the little steps will amount to something if you allow them them space and time. So what I see here are strong beginnings, want I want to see next is your commitment to one. If you follow the bin bag exploration look at: Franz West, Phylida Barlow, Gavin Turks’ Bin Bag, Traces by The Crank, Simon Pericich’s All Together Now, Christo and Jean Claude and their wrapped architectural work, and look at Rebecca Warren and her very loose and playful sculptures in plaster. What is interesting about your bin bag work is that way that you have made the bag a sculptural material, allowing it to be something in its own right, for its own sake, it is very simple, we see the potential beauty in the material and its possible forms, it is non referential in how you are manipulating it – but it also, by default refers to wider, greater concepts – human consumption and waste and therefore the climate crisis. Good luck over the next weeks, make a decision this week and go for it..

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