Tag Archives: reuse

Mixed up animals…

25 Feb

Lucy Bailey’s reconstructed soft toys on display at Here shop and Gallery. Lucy has picked apart the seems of wild animal soft toys to create new hybrids. Check out the panda parrot.

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Check out Gammaraybots…

25 Feb


spacevirus1

Originally uploaded by gammaraybots

Tom Torry’s Gammaraybots collection. He uses found objects to create these rather amazing little robots.

End of ‘On the Fence’ exhibition

30 Jun

I spent the last day of the exhibition checking out the other student’s work around the college. I was particularly impressed by the Printed Textiles/Surface pattern design show and some of the exhibits in the Visual Communications show were astounding. I came back a few times to check on our exhibition and kept finding more people sat at the workshop bench making some toys from the scrap fabrics. Like this…

Workshop on the final day of the exhibition

The exhibition is now over, we’ve packed up and received our results. Let’s just say, I’m very pleased with them. Click here to view images of the rest of the exhibition.

I have been thinking, I need to organise a new exhibition for all of these new creatures and toys that have been made. Here are some of the makers with their toys…

Catherine with Dean the duck

Catherine and Dean the duck

Bav completed Mini Dude today by giving him a body and string vest

Bav and Mini Dude

Fiona finished her Sheepy just in time

Fi and sheepy

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Saturday’s plush workshop

21 May

The workshop on Saturday was held in the ‘Corner of the market I’ unit in the Merrion Market, a large red unit just a tiny walk from theartmarket.

Corner in the market I

Saturday workshop

At the workshop we had lots of fabric for people to use, a sewing machine and other tools. The fabric I have been collecting over several months and comes from charity shops and unwanted clothing and scrap fabrics.

Stitch

Here is Amy with the stitching that she did in the workshop. She said she might finish it at home or maybe bring it to the next workshop to finish it.

A happy Amy

This is Michael with his brilliant ‘Octopus’. I particularly like the shape of its block head.

Michael and 'Octopus'

Jen made a sock puppet called ‘Lilly’ with a pretty bow on top of her head.

Jen and 'Lilly'

Here’s Donna taking a break after a long day of her project ‘Swap Shop’.  She’s beginning work on a plush giraffe.

Donna starting her giraffe

Everyone, apart from Zo hand-stitched their work. We were suprised how quickly Zo managed to whip up a plush bird using the sewing machine.

Zo using the stuffing

Slug before stuffing

This was supposed to be a rat, but everyone said it looked a lot more like a slug. It really took shape after a bit of stuffing.

Slug with stuffing

Donna with giraffe

Brush resting

Zo put some googly eyes on a paint brush and we took photographs as though the brush was an artist at the workshop. I’m hoping to use these photos to create a short animation inviting people to the workshop and declaring that even brushes can join in.

The next workshop will be this Tuesday with Nicolar Bell and all creations shall be on display in an exhibition in theartmarket from Saturday 26th May.

More workshop photos

17 Apr

As promised more photos from the ladyfest workshop (thank you Sarah!). There’s some good ones of the workshop in progress. Here’s the stereo ready to be dismantled, well it’s ready to be dropped onto concrete after trying for enough time with the tools to break it apart…

Stereo soon to be dismanted

Here’s me unscrewing parts of the stereo after having dropped it from a height onto concrete. The stereo split into two parts and exposed the insides with all the circuit boards.

Workbench

Zo and Ames are beginning to make their monsters. I liked the way that Zo had stitched a bead necklace under some latex to create a spine for her creature. The latex being re-used here was from a huge monster sculpture that Dan had made for his degree show.
Dan’s monster was on display in the Leeds Met University main entrance few a few weeks, but unfortunately because of its gigantic size, it had to be taken apart because he could not find adequate storage for it. For a good view of the whole gigantic monster click here. Ames combined different found elements to give her monster a Jamaican vibe. I love the palm trees.

Finding materials

Dan working on some found wings…

Dan working with wings

Toby starting his monster, this dude made the mighty bird monster with wings made from reused latex.

Workshop

This guy is one of the couple who travelled up from Reading for the festival. He’s using a saw to cut off sections from the found toys to make it easier to glue them together. If you can spot the tiny prodigy sticker on the table….Dan went to great lengths to cut into the plastic of the stereo just to get this sticker off in one piece so he could put it onto the back of his crab monster.

Workshop

Sarah, one of our visiting ‘resident’ artists looking proud after making the first of her two robots. This one’s modestly named bot. He’s flying an art market flag. Bot is made mainly from old electrical equipment, including a cassette player for his head. Knitted resident artist sash made by Lil Adams.

Workshop

If this doesn’t illustrate how happy this workshop can make someone, I don’t know what will. Great smile Dan. It does also look as though he’s wearing a big black feather at the back of his head, suitable for a cocktail party.

Dan with wings

Zo’ monster nearly finished, with a baby doll plastic arm.

Zo

A rummage through the boxes of junk.

Rummaging in the boxes

Dan’s second monster….I think it looks a bit like a the skeleton crab riding a monster bike.

Crab monster

Toby’s bird monster…

bird monster

Sarah’s second creation of the day, this one is named ‘Ro’, with a circuit board for a body, a headphone-head, an old necklace for a mouth and the bit the holds a CD in place in a stereo for an eye.

Ro

A friendly artist (didn’t manage to catch his name) showing me his creation that has shaped up to look like a dinosaur. I’m impressed, you can’t see my face but I am.

workshop

dinosaur monster

A workshop regular, Rachel ‘Miss Police’ working on her fantastically camp mime cat monster. Using many colourful beads.

Rachel

Crystal re-using some furry fabric.

Crystal

Workshop photos

15 Apr

Just a little report back from our Ladyfest Leeds workshop from yesterday: because of the brilliant support that we had from our visiting artist friends, it was a thoroughly enjoyable day and everyone seemed to throw themselves in. There were lots of brilliant creations made: some robots, some cute little decorated pieces, some hanging flying sculptures and some big hybrid monster toys. I’m really pleased at the turn out, especially when I heard that two people at the workshop had traveled all the way from Reading to come to Ladyfest Leeds.

We had an old stereo and video player that didn’t work, which we spent some time taking apart. The stereo proved pretty difficult to take apart using just tools so, we ended up taking it to the street to drop from a great height into a dis-used subway to break it into usable parts. The circuit boards inside proved good parts for robots.

Thanks to the following artists for their support yesterday: Sarah Barrett, Zoe Sawyer, Dan Walls and Amy Warren

My camera died half way through the workshop so I have a limited amount of photos so far, however, Sarah was snap-happy all day so I’m hoping there’s some gems on her camera to post on here. Here’s the few photos that I have….

Trash friends

Crab monster by a dude from Reading

Crab monster

Big robot by a lovely lass from Reading

Big robot

‘Carribean womble merman’ by Amy Warren

Carribean womble merman

‘Bot’ by Sarah Barrett

Bot

If you want to see the full collection of creations from the workshop they are on display in the window cabinet opposite The Art Market in the Merrion Market.

Exhibition photos…first days

9 Dec

After Dan, Nicola, Zoe and I managed to clear out the rest of the junk left in the interior of the shop, we gave it a good clean and rearranged the shelving in preparation for the exhibition. As we pulled up the metal shutter for the ‘Re-Toyed Trash’ exhibition opening at 1pm on Thursday, several curious glances from other shop owners in the Merrion Market suggested that we had transformed the space into something new.

theartmarket exterior

We had two offers in one day from men who wanted to paint us a sign at a low cost. They had discovered that our shop was newly opened and were quick to get in with their offers. Once I had told the men that the two ladies who were renting out the shop were graduates from fine art courses and were going to paint ‘theartmarket‘ sign themselves, the men left looking rather disappointed.

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We had many curious passers-by who were not intentionally in the Merrion Market for our exhibition and would come and ask us questions. I found this to be a great benefit of the location of this venue, we not only had people who came down after seeing our posters around the town, on the internet and via emails….people who were wandering through the Merrion complex would stroll in and check the exhibition out. One man remarked that it had a very ‘welcoming’ feel to the space and this is unlike many galleries, which can be less welcoming to the general public on the street.

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I enjoyed the encounters I had with people wandering in and asking me questions, I met many interesting characters in the first two days. One lady (not pictured here) after seeing some of Dan Walls work told us a story of how her friend’s dog ate another friend’s parrot and how looking at Dan’s work reminded her of this. She also insisted on making a contribution and wrote in our guest book stating that she would like to see more of these creations. IMG_3433Dan's Frederfeeko toys

This is Dan Walls ‘Badgerborg’. When the stomach area is pressed the badger makes a wailing noise and when the shoulder is pressed the badger moves. Dan often re-uses the mechanical components from the toys that he finds and puts them together to create his unique toys.

'Badgerborg' by Dan Walls

This is Dan’s rabbit bag . He works with road kill and gives dead animals a new life in his work. To enable him to use this kind of material in his work, Dan has been learning taxidermy for the last 5 months. He only ever uses found objects, re-used materials and (already) dead animals in his work.

Dan's rabbit bag

This is Jonathan Bointon’s ‘Glassback Bear’. This soft toy has shards of glass protruding from it’s fur. Jonanthan says, ‘this distorts the ideas of cuddliness and comfort that one usually associates with teddy bears.’'Glassback bear' by Jonathan Bointon

Nicolar Bells’ ‘Stitchikers’ soft toys. They travel the world via people passing them on and their travels are documented by the bearer of the Stitchiker at the time and photos of their whereabouts are uploaded onto Nicolar’s website. One lucky Stitchiker managed to be passed on by Des Lynam (left in the photo below).

'Stitchikers' by Nicola Bell

Nicola Bells ‘Eew!’ toys. ‘Eew!’ stands for Ecologically Ethical World. Each character represents a sustainable solution, for example wind or solar power. Each of them is made from sustainable or recycled materials and these toys attack the idea of creating designer toys in plastics and uncompostable materials.
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