Potentiality

Note/Thought - Thought Dump by Ally McGinn

I keep three repositories of thoughts and notes, physical sketchbooks (which are used/turned into an edited sketchbook) voice memo’s (which are typed up and amalgamated into relevant writings - statements, presentations, reflections, research etc) and an online document that I can edit anywhere.

The following notes/statements are taken from the online document. Titled ‘Reflective Thoughts’ I usually make some form of note once a day. These thoughts are important to the practice, and in understanding the effects research is having on my thinking.

I could separate these into separate blog posts, and for the purposes of accurately recording the dates of theory, I plan to in future. For now, a selected grouping of recent interesting thoughts, with links to research and reflective thinking.

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10th November

Objects in time.

The object is a constant where time is motion. The object pauses the moment?

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12th November

Revealing thought through process.

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16th November

The limits of knowledge.

We know something by first defining its edges, its limits.

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17th November

Writing what I know.

I write things down, and then I know them.

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My practice shows that art is a way of looking in that the practice is a form of perception, that is subverted to form new conversations.
This perceptual practice becomes a lot closer to the way a viewer interacts with the work. I see something and ask how it is art, or how I can define it as such.
An example of this is an idea i had to include a ‘For Sale’ sign in my space (an idea I’m not sure ill act upon). The inspiration for this came from driving home, I saw a for sale sign that had fallen over in the road and I wondered what it would mean to bring that into my work. That inspiration was incidental to my functional drive.
This is another example of the ways we notice things that are abnormal. And in this case an object whose function has been altered, it's purpose undone.

Reflection - often when I find I'm stuck in the studio, a natural part of the daily rhythm, I drive home and think about the work and the world and I find new things I want to explore, new questions I want to ask.

 

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20th November

Bit of a bad night again, I'm exhausted and ill. It's not a good mix.

If I aim for progress too much I'll jump right over the point.

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Idea - the title and description are shown on the wall, with the images of the artworks (with no other information) reproduced in a catalogue.

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A Kierkegaard quote that I need to look into more is that people tend to be “subjective with themselves and objective with others” where we should be striving for the opposite. That is the state of despair that Kierkegaard suggests that we all live in. One of the main types of despair that people fall into, according to Kierkegaard, is one where you tie your sense of yourself, of the value of yourself, into something external that we have no true control over. Which is really interesting.

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Analysis Paralysis - fantastic title name.

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21st November

Expansion and contraction seem to be key terms in the practice, that recur in theory. The balance of the two is key to a sustainable practice.

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22nd November

Descriptions, opinions and interpretations.

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An idea - ‘Art in the 22nd century’ - then there is nothing on the wall. The inevitable future of art?

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23rd November

The threads on the wall. Because there are 14 it becomes about the screws, and their location in relation to one another, more than about the canvas string.

The inclusion of frames is because it is about framing and the way we frame art in different ways.

Maybe these are two works of art.

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28th November

The act of occupying space

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The act of organisation makes things smaller, makes them fit. (Glove fitting into pocket)

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29th November

Installation implies a single whole but I think my work can be compartmentalised into individual pieces.

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Potentiality is by definition, transitory. It is forever in the future, and can never be guaranteed.

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Communicative transactions.

Artist and viewer cooperate in a mutually beneficial transaction.

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What do they think I'm doing? Where do they think I'm coming from? To try to figure that out I need to try to see things from their shoes, to take a step back from the work and understand where they think I'm coming from. With my kind of work, that is a big consideration. People trying to understand what I'm thinking.

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Maybe my method is reflection and perception.

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30th November

Art cannot be contained within words.

Art shows us ways to see everything as images, decipherable and beautiful for their complexity.

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If we can go as far as we can see, and understand as far as we can see, then what really matters in the case of movement and development, is a change in perspective.

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2nd December

We should not think of the past as fact that cannot be changed. It is changed, everything we continue to do builds upon and alters the context of, what has come before. So the past can be changed by actions, and perceptions of the present.

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3rd December

Life in Context: Context in Life.

Everything can be described as knowledge. Context is knowledge (specified). Everything has context.

Context is even at the heart of the nature: nurture debate. The two cannot be undone or separated because they are together. Both exist in a single person, who we are, and cannot be distanced.

Context is at the heart of what it means to be human. It can be said that to be human is to contextualise. We cannot ‘be’ without something to ‘be’ in. The thing we are ‘beings’ in, is our context and is therefore indiscriminate from ‘being’ itself.

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The Experiential Turn.

Shows that one of the purposes of art can be a grounding into the experiential moment, for the distanced person that is the modern human.

Everyday life distances is from the things we really want to be doing and the people that we really are.

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6th December

Art is always relational and contextual, we cannot get away from those things

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Artists refuse to take anything for granted.

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Bringing something into focus so that you can then go on to talk about it - as a description of art?

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7th December

Relational sentences.

Further impetus for the idea of sentence structure as maths - Once you put two things together they speak to each other.

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Philosophy and art are intrinsically related and yet vastly different.

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“Often wrong but never in doubt” an old, anecdotal, military saying. It means that once you have decided on the best logical decision you shouldn’t doubt yourself and should continue with purpose.

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They are philosophical works, I haven't really noted that enough. That is part of what they do - a philosophical exploration.

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They create opportunities to explore.

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Studio Research - Week 10 by Ally McGinn

This week involved a great deal of discussion, a shift in thinking, statement writing and logistic issues. 

Ally McGinn (2017)  Reflection . Paint tube, oil paint, photograph and pencil, 20 x 15 x 7 cm approximately.  This piece has evolved over the last few weeks. The source of its creation is hard to pinpoint in a single source. It shows, rather, the development of thought, and a focussing of idea. Documentation of the early stages of this piece can be found in week eight. I feel it is one of the most successful pieces, in an individual sense, created this term (and therefore on the MA so far). It is tempting here to contextually deconstruct this piece, but I find that I am reluctant to. Instead I will leave it here, in a digital space, to allow it its existence.

Ally McGinn (2017) Reflection. Paint tube, oil paint, photograph and pencil, 20 x 15 x 7 cm approximately.

This piece has evolved over the last few weeks. The source of its creation is hard to pinpoint in a single source. It shows, rather, the development of thought, and a focussing of idea.
Documentation of the early stages of this piece can be found in week eight.
I feel it is one of the most successful pieces, in an individual sense, created this term (and therefore on the MA so far).
It is tempting here to contextually deconstruct this piece, but I find that I am reluctant to.
Instead I will leave it here, in a digital space, to allow it its existence.

Ally McGinn (2017)  Painting  [Working Title]. Paint and studio dust, size varies.  This piece is a large paint skin, with dust collected from the studio over a period of three months. It is placed in such a way as to be ambiguous (although this would change in a gallery setting). Sadly it lived up to it's ambiguity, and was thrown away by a well intentioned anonymous party. There is something beautiful about that interaction.   The artwork had a choice based interaction with another person.

Ally McGinn (2017) Painting [Working Title]. Paint and studio dust, size varies.

This piece is a large paint skin, with dust collected from the studio over a period of three months. It is placed in such a way as to be ambiguous (although this would change in a gallery setting). Sadly it lived up to it's ambiguity, and was thrown away by a well intentioned anonymous party. There is something beautiful about that interaction. 

The artwork had a choice based interaction with another person.

Ally McGinn (2017)  Potentiality.  Canvas, paper, paint, ink, pencil and acorn, size varies.  This piece speaks most clearly about potentiality. The pencil line on the wall is a line from the smaller piece, but I hope it encourages the small question of, which piece is it hinting at.  The colour hidden behind grey (which is the same paint as the floor) is echoed in the materials involved. The colourful piece is a photocopy of an old work, it is stretched around nothing. The grey is traditionally made, with attention to detail, and a single colour.  The small seed is leaning between the wall and the work. It has cracked with age, mimicking the edge of the grey canvas. It's potentiality is undeniable and allegorical to the connection between artwork and context.  When placed in the installation it connects to the hidden storage of work behind the canvas wall, which also speaks about potentiality. Linking across the space in a metaphysical sharing of context.

Ally McGinn (2017) Potentiality. Canvas, paper, paint, ink, pencil and acorn, size varies.

This piece speaks most clearly about potentiality. The pencil line on the wall is a line from the smaller piece, but I hope it encourages the small question of, which piece is it hinting at.

The colour hidden behind grey (which is the same paint as the floor) is echoed in the materials involved. The colourful piece is a photocopy of an old work, it is stretched around nothing. The grey is traditionally made, with attention to detail, and a single colour.

The small seed is leaning between the wall and the work. It has cracked with age, mimicking the edge of the grey canvas. It's potentiality is undeniable and allegorical to the connection between artwork and context.

When placed in the installation it connects to the hidden storage of work behind the canvas wall, which also speaks about potentiality. Linking across the space in a metaphysical sharing of context.

Ally McGinn (2017)  Enframed.  Found objects, emulsion paint, gold frame and canvas, 250 x 120 x 50 cm approximately.  This piece has been discussed in the documentation of earlier weeks. Like ' Reflection' , this piece has evolved through a process of consideration and adjustment. The addition of this week is the painted floor, adding a full-stop to this conversation.

Ally McGinn (2017) Enframed. Found objects, emulsion paint, gold frame and canvas, 250 x 120 x 50 cm approximately.

This piece has been discussed in the documentation of earlier weeks. Like 'Reflection', this piece has evolved through a process of consideration and adjustment.
The addition of this week is the painted floor, adding a full-stop to this conversation.

Ally McGinn (2017)  A New Conversation  [Working Title]. Mixed media installation, size varies.  The pieces in my work are individual in a sense and yet remain part of a larger whole. If the installation is a conversation, the pieces inside it are sentences, the individual elements of pieces can be seen as words, and finishing the analogy the materials become letters.  This analogy leaves a lot to be desired but it serves for the purpose of this metaphor.

Ally McGinn (2017) A New Conversation [Working Title]. Mixed media installation, size varies.

The pieces in my work are individual in a sense and yet remain part of a larger whole. If the installation is a conversation, the pieces inside it are sentences, the individual elements of pieces can be seen as words, and finishing the analogy the materials become letters.

This analogy leaves a lot to be desired but it serves for the purpose of this metaphor.

Ally McGinn (2017)  Glitch.  Digital print.  Three shots amalgamated into one, by my camera. An incidental camera glitch. It's dark and the colouring is terrible for a traditional photo.  I love it.  A photography machine.

Ally McGinn (2017) Glitch. Digital print.

Three shots amalgamated into one, by my camera. An incidental camera glitch. It's dark and the colouring is terrible for a traditional photo.

I love it.

A photography machine.

Studio Research - Week 8 by Ally McGinn

This is going to be an image heavy post. A truly seminal week in the studio this week, that will require a great deal of reflection. It appears that my plan to take time off to focus on context so that i could return focussed on studio was a success. 

Ally McGinn (2017) Studio view.  Empty frames with a balanced aesthetic.

Ally McGinn (2017) Studio view.

Empty frames with a balanced aesthetic.

Ally McGinn (2017)  Balanced Unbalanced  [Placement test]. Materials and size vary.  The idea of balance has come up throughout the last few months, or at least I have become aware of it.  It is found in many areas of life and I wouldn't be surprised if I one day believe that it is one of the foundations of reality.  I have been exploring the idea in the studio, which has brought a subtle vulnerability to the work.  It falls over, a lot. Occasionally onto me, or other works. There was one Rube Goldberg-esque moment in the studio of a chain reaction that I wish I had filmed. I'm unsure whether recreating it would be inauthentic. I'm unsure about inauthenticity.

Ally McGinn (2017) Balanced Unbalanced [Placement test]. Materials and size vary.

The idea of balance has come up throughout the last few months, or at least I have become aware of it.

It is found in many areas of life and I wouldn't be surprised if I one day believe that it is one of the foundations of reality.

I have been exploring the idea in the studio, which has brought a subtle vulnerability to the work.

It falls over, a lot. Occasionally onto me, or other works. There was one Rube Goldberg-esque moment in the studio of a chain reaction that I wish I had filmed. I'm unsure whether recreating it would be inauthentic. I'm unsure about inauthenticity.

Ally McGinn (2017) Presence Absence [Studio view].

Ally McGinn (2017) Presence Absence [Studio view].

Ally McGinn (2017) Presentation test [Studio view].  There are individual pieces in my practice, but the second part of their existence involves the exploration of them in relation to other works. This photo is a test of a conversation between the works. 

Ally McGinn (2017) Presentation test [Studio view].

There are individual pieces in my practice, but the second part of their existence involves the exploration of them in relation to other works. This photo is a test of a conversation between the works. 

Ally McGinn (2017)  Potential Process.  Canvas, frame and acorn. Size varies.

Ally McGinn (2017) Potential Process. Canvas, frame and acorn. Size varies.

Ally McGinn (2017)  pAINTing.  Canvas, wooden frame and paint. 25 x 25 cm.

Ally McGinn (2017) pAINTing. Canvas, wooden frame and paint. 25 x 25 cm.

Ally McGinn (2017) A test of balance [Studio view].  Another conversation test. 

Ally McGinn (2017) A test of balance [Studio view].

Another conversation test. 

Ally McGinn (2017) The equalising qualities of grey painting [Studio view].  Objects of various values, purposes and associations, equalised through process and a reduction of their primary qualities. 

Ally McGinn (2017) The equalising qualities of grey painting [Studio view].

Objects of various values, purposes and associations, equalised through process and a reduction of their primary qualities. 

Ally McGinn (2017)  PAINTING . Mixed media. Size varies.

Ally McGinn (2017) PAINTING. Mixed media. Size varies.

Ally McGinn (2017)  PAINTING.  Mixed media. Size varies.

Ally McGinn (2017) PAINTING. Mixed media. Size varies.

Ally McGinn (2017)  Deconstructed PAINTING . Mixed media. Size varies.

Ally McGinn (2017) Deconstructed PAINTING. Mixed media. Size varies.

Ally McGinn (2017) Deconstructed painting continued  [Studio view].

Ally McGinn (2017) Deconstructed painting continued  [Studio view].

Ally McGinn (2017) Detail shot of ' Deconstructed painting continued'

Ally McGinn (2017) Detail shot of 'Deconstructed painting continued'

Ally McGinn (2017) Threads on screws - this was an exploration of unifying the screws left in the wall by myself and other students. 

Ally McGinn (2017) Threads on screws - this was an exploration of unifying the screws left in the wall by myself and other students. 

Ally McGinn (2017) Studio View. 17.11.17

Ally McGinn (2017) Studio View. 17.11.17

Ally McGinn (2017)  Reflection.  Paint, tube and photo. Approximately 20 x 20 cm. 

Ally McGinn (2017) Reflection. Paint, tube and photo. Approximately 20 x 20 cm. 

Ally McGinn (2017) Leaning tests [Studio view].

Ally McGinn (2017) Leaning tests [Studio view].

Ally McGinn (2017)  Guyon.  Oil on canvas and masking tape, with frame. 120 x 50 cm.

Ally McGinn (2017) Guyon. Oil on canvas and masking tape, with frame. 120 x 50 cm.

Ally McGinn (2017)  Plinth painting . Paintings. 40 x 40 x 60 cm.

Ally McGinn (2017) Plinth painting. Paintings. 40 x 40 x 60 cm.

Ally McGinn (2017) Conversation test [Studio view].

Ally McGinn (2017) Conversation test [Studio view].

Ally McGinn (2017)  Stacked Balance.  Paintings on plinth. Size varies.

Ally McGinn (2017) Stacked Balance. Paintings on plinth. Size varies.

Ally McGinn (2017) [Studio view].  Something interesting is happening here, I can't quite define it yet but there is certainly an unintentional conversation that could use some perceptual contextualisation. 

Ally McGinn (2017) [Studio view].

Something interesting is happening here, I can't quite define it yet but there is certainly an unintentional conversation that could use some perceptual contextualisation. 

Ally McGinn (2017)  Commodity  test  [Studio view].

Ally McGinn (2017) Commodity test  [Studio view].

Ally McGinn (2017) [Studio view].  There is an interesting divide between 'studio' and 'gallery' in the space on Friday.

Ally McGinn (2017) [Studio view].

There is an interesting divide between 'studio' and 'gallery' in the space on Friday.

Studio Research - Week 5 by Ally McGinn

A big change in the studio this week, so it gets a post to itself. 

Ally McGinn (2017) [Studio documentation]. Potential Purpose (2017) 

Ally McGinn (2017) [Studio documentation]. Potential Purpose (2017) 

Ally McGinn (2017) [Studio documentation]. Normalising objects, equalising form, exploring hierarchy. 

Ally McGinn (2017) [Studio documentation]. Normalising objects, equalising form, exploring hierarchy. 

Ally McGinn (2017) [Studio documentation].   Studio View - Wednesday 25th, 9am. The process continues but I'm stuck to the wall.

Ally McGinn (2017) [Studio documentation]. 

Studio View - Wednesday 25th, 9am. The process continues but I'm stuck to the wall.

Ally McGinn (2017) [Studio documentation].   Studio View - Wednesday 25th, 9:30am - The wall is down. The light is amazing, but I've had an idea. 

Ally McGinn (2017) [Studio documentation]. 

Studio View - Wednesday 25th, 9:30am - The wall is down. The light is amazing, but I've had an idea. 

Ally McGinn (2017) [Studio documentation].   Studio View - Wednesday 25th, 11am - The wall is no longer a wall. Now it is a painting.  Ive extended the space behind the wall, and reinforced it. Im reluctant to screw through the canvas, yet. 

Ally McGinn (2017) [Studio documentation]. 

Studio View - Wednesday 25th, 11am - The wall is no longer a wall. Now it is a painting.

Ive extended the space behind the wall, and reinforced it. Im reluctant to screw through the canvas, yet. 

Ally McGinn (2017) [Studio documentation].   Studio View - End of week 5. The works on the wall are beginning to connect. Balance is still a keen interest. 

Ally McGinn (2017) [Studio documentation]. 

Studio View - End of week 5. The works on the wall are beginning to connect. Balance is still a keen interest.