Skip to content

Week 8

What happened this week? If it comes to classes we had a class with Tim about the research we’ve done due to the group workshop – I chose the word REFLECTION even if I didn’t attend the previous class. Again – there were only 4 or 5 people in the class, and it wasn’t nice. These research classes are so useful – we can meet new artists that can inspire us, it also is a short presentation that we are not really marked on so it is a good opportunity to practice our speeches, timing and confidence. Because we didn’t spend lots of time on presenting we used this time for a reflection on our whole course and the future. We also could get to know each other better, because there are people that I haven’t talked to a lot in the classes. It was a nice and calm time, I enjoyed it a lot! Here is my PP and the script that I wrote for it!

1. Reflection is a word I chose from the list of words we were given.

2. the project I found is The Flow of Time which was commissioned by the Yellow Ribbon Project for the Singapore Art Museum Glass Box Gallery. The installation is a collaborative project of 3 artists – Nicola Anthony, Barry Yeow and Kim Whye Kee. This Sculpture takes the shape of an hourglass and is the artistic response of the artists mentioned above to their time as artist-mentors to the inmates at Changi Prison, Singapore, delivering the Yellow Ribbon Art Programme.

3. What is The Yellow Ribbon Project? The Yellow Ribbon Project (YRP) is a national public engagement campaign aimed at changing society’s mindset in giving ex-offenders a second chance in life.

Every year, more than 9,000 ex-offenders complete their sentences and are released from the various prisons and drug rehabilitation centres (DRCs). It is disheartening that ex-offenders have to live with the stigma of having served time behind bars when they are released from prison, one that can often be more punishing than the prison sentence itself. Many ex-offenders, once released, find themselves literally stepping into a second prison. This time it would be a prison with invisible bars, of suspicion, of mistrust and of discrimination.

The best rehabilitation regime during incarceration is of no use if ex-offenders find themselves rejected at every turn when they are released into the larger community. Through the Yellow Ribbon Project, we hope to promote a more accepting society, one that is willing to give ex-offenders a second chance at making good. It is important that we help unlock the second prison for our inmates, even as we let them out of the physical one.

4. In the process of planning for the sculpture, the artist-mentors decided on the visual of a floating hourglass on its side, which the three artists would create together, each in their own technique.

Barry Yeow specializes in oil paintings. Her pieces were mounted on silver disks  to create a “base” of the sculpture, those layered paths of colourful oils  allude to “the beginning and ending of every journey in life.” 

The hourglass centre is filled with the broken remains of Kim Whye Kee’s half-finished teapot sculpting the spaces in between with endless possibilities of freedom and hope. The pieces remind us that “without broken fragments, there will not be the ‘Unbroken'”. No amount of support nor sympathy can help us to become better and more useful people in society unless we choose to help ourselves.

Nicola Anthony’s paper skin forms the body of the hourglass, stained with inks and burnt with incense sticks– a nod to Nicola Anthony’s signature art techniques that were also taught to her students at Changi Women’s prison. For her, the process of burning and erasing the surface of inked calligraphy papers is both time-consuming, meditative and symbolic: a process that takes and gives, destroys and births in equal measure. 

5. Here is a video presenting the whole sculpture so ill play it now.

6. The sculpture is a picture, a reflection of a human being from its beginning to the end. Every piece of the sculptural installation can be a moment of our life. No matter if those moments are worse or better in the end that is what creates our life. Through this sculpture, we can see it in a summarized way. In a way that is easier to comprehend.

7. When I found this piece the first thing that caught my attention was the mirror-like circles at both ends of the installation. And I am not going to lie to you I am a simple person and when I saw the mirrors I thought AH! In a mirror, you can see your reflection, right? That was the first thing that came to my mind. Unfortunately, there is nothing explained in this part of the installation, but when I thought about it more, I came up with something. I believe that the mirrors suggest that our life is infinite or maybe it is more our soul – there are reflections of the sculpture on both of its ends. There is something before we were born and after we die. It reminds me of reincarnation – the reflection in those mirrors are the same so we can see the previous and the future lives of someone.

I also ordered liquid latex for my mace maks. I found it on Amazon and it was much cheaper than the silicone, so I ordered it hoping that it will work. Disclaimer: it didn’t. I haven’t even taken any photos, but you have to believe me. Actually, it came out that if you want to use latex to make a mould, you have to put lots of thin layers to get it to work. Unfortunately, I poured everything I had on my mask, so it didn’t dry at all even after 5 days. It was still super watery and yeah I have nothing else to say about this. Another catastrophe but I didn’t have a mental breakdown this time yay!!! I was mad that I lost more days on preparing the mould and I still can not start doing the actual masks I wanted to have 300 of them (I am aware that it was impossible now). But like I said, no mental breakdown just madness.

So I knew that I have to order a larger number of the first silicone to get it done. And I did. Can you imagine that I spent over 200 pounds on this? Thankfully I applied for a hardship and I get this money back. At that moment, I am not going to lie, that was my biggest worry. The thing that I spent so much money on this is ridiculous. I am so sorry, but I don’t have any documentation of making the second silicone mould, because I focused too much on getting it right and I totally forgot to photo anything.

I realized that making 300 masks with plaster casts is not possible, so I had to figure out what other material can I use to get them done. As you can see in the photo above I bought some aluminium foil and I tried to use it for mask making. I just took a large piece of aluminium foil and pressed it into thgne mould. I tried to smoot it down with a spoon, but it didn’t do its job. To sum up it kind of worked and was fast, but I am not a fan of the final outcome. It didn’t fit my idea.

I also tried a previously soaked sheet of paper, but the effect was too imperfect:

The last try was doing the mask also with using paper, but I recycled it first. I found a polish tutorial how to do this, cause I’ve never done this before.

So I found a old of papers that I knew I will never use again – for example my Japanese lessons – I have all these files online, old notes and basically documents that I would throw away when I’m moving out. There was a lot of it to be honest. So I cut it, soaked it and to make the process faster I used a blender to make the mass finer. I worked pretty good – the mask was rather smooth, with an interesting texture. Here are results from my first try:

It takes about 40 minutes to make one recycled paper mask (with using a hair dryer to dry them) so I might make a lower number of them, because it is a long process. 300 seems impossible to make, so yeah maybe I’ll do only one wall covered with them? We’ll see, I’m stressing out cause there’s no much time left…

Leave a Reply