Next weeks’ Artist Residency…… the things we lost in the fire…. ???

Just thinking through my forthcoming 2-day Gallery Residency as part of the Shed Space Exhibition at The Old Fire Station, Oxford. My current research has brought me to the former Lucas Underwear factory and its fire of 1965…. In 1965 The Old Fire Station would of still been active as a fire station… The Former Lucas Underwear Factory building still stands opposite the Old Fire Station in George Street, Oxford….. some thing to mull over….

 

I will be weaving in response to my research findings somewhere in the gallery at The Old fire Station on Friday 24 June & Saturday 25 June, 11am – 6pm. I am also leading a two hour workshop session on Saturday 25 June, 1pm – 3pm.

 

Shed Space continues until 2nd July 2016 at The Gallery, Arts at the Old Fire Station (AOFS). 40 George Street, Oxford, OX1 2AQ. Tel 01865 263990

For further information and booking please go to http://www.oldfirestation.org.uk/exhibit/shed-space/

 Lucas underwear factory oxford fire 1965

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‘The secrets we keep from ourselves…’

I am delighted that my work ‘the secrets we keep from ourselves…’ will be part of Nottingham City’s Museums and Galleries Fine Art Textile Collection, UK.  This large scale woven textile installation will sit alongside my other works; ’Squeeze’, ‘Petti-fur-coat’, ‘Odd one out’ and ‘The Brides Clothes’ already part of the same collection. ‘the secrets we keep from ourselves…’ was commissioned by Nottingham Castle Museum & Art Gallery UK with funding from the Arts Council England through The National Lottery, for ’Lace Works – Contemporary Art & Nottingham Lace’ exhibition, Nottingham Castle Museum & Art Gallery, England. 10th November 2012 – 10th February 2013. As the work is complex to install with transient fragments that response to the exhibition space I am spending some time in the studio working on stabilizing the more transient seams and lace trims while writing up, documenting and drawing out guidelines for installation of the work.  To a certain extent this means re-adjusting and re-working…

The secrets we keep from ourselves by Lucy Brown.  Overview. Installed at Nottingham Caste Museum and Art Gallery, England. Part of ’Lace Works – Contemporary Art & Nottingham Lace’ exhibition. Photographers credit John Hartley 2013

The secrets we keep from ourselves by Lucy Brown. Overview. Installed at Nottingham Caste Museum and Art Gallery, England. Part of ’Lace Works – Contemporary Art & Nottingham Lace’ exhibition. Photographers credit John Hartley 2013

The secrets we keep from ourselves....just unpacked and back in the studio...

The secrets we keep from ourselves….just unpacked and back in the studio…

For one week only view Elsa online!

If you were unable to view ‘Elsa’ in the recent exhibition ‘Leaving Home: A new setting for site-specific contemporary craft’, at the Contemporary Applied Arts, London which ended on the 31st May, for one week only ‘Elsa’ can be viewed at https://vimeo.com/97659590

‘Elsa’ stars is a short silent film, part of the site-specific work ‘They loved to breathe beauty, tradition and romanticism…”, originally made for the National Trust Property, Nymans. The film follows “Elsa”, a fictional character relative of the Messel family, invented and performed by Lucy herself.  Elsa explores Nymans hoping to learn something about her family roots and heritage. As Elsa moves through the gardens, ruins and interior rooms she senses the presence and lives of her relations Maud Messel and Anne Countess of Rosse. The film uses the Nymans house and gardens as a film set, exposing the spaces within the property that the pubic don’t get to visit; such as the ruins of the Great Hall, or spaces which are cordoned off; like the Garden Hall where Elsa peers into Mauds’ sewing box. Elsa also takes a moment where the original staircase once stood.

Some of the vintage garments worn by Elsa in the film, were used as raw material in the garment woven sculpture installation. The film developed from Browns’ desire to select the vintage garment raw materials through the on-site wearing  on location at Nymans.

Filmed on location at Nymans, West Sussex. February 2012. With thanks as always to the National Trust (Enterprises) Ltd, Paul Dutnall  Junk TV and Unravelled Arts.

Elsa’s running time is 5min 42 sec. and can be viewed until the end of the longest day – Sunday 21st June…. Summer Solstice 2015!

Elsa heading for the entrance. Nymans

Film Still – Elsa heading for the Entrance at Nymans, National Trust

 

 

Elsa’s leaving home….

‘Leaving Home: A new setting for site-specific contemporary craft’. Current exhibition at Contemporary Applied Arts, London 17 April 2015 – 31 May 2015.

Part of my site-specific work “They loved to breathe beauty, tradition and romanticism…”, originally made for the National Trust Property Nymans in Sussex is currently on show in ‘Leaving Home’. This part of the work is a film, in which I star as Elsa, a fictional character who explores Nymans House and Gardens through her changes of vintage clothes….

Elsa walking through the great hall ruins, Nymans House

“They loved to breathe beauty, tradition and romanticism…” Film still. Elsa walking through the Great Hall Ruins at Nymans. Film still credit – Paul Dutnall. Junk TV

Elsa viewing Maud Messels sewing box. Nymans House

“They loved to breathe beauty, tradition and romanticism…” Film still. Elsa viewing Maud Messels’ Georgian sewing box in the Garden Hall, Nymans House. Film still credit – Paul Dutnall. Junk TV.

“They loved to breathe beauty, tradition and romanticism…” was commissioned by Unravelled Arts for ‘Unravelling Nymans’ exhibition of 2012. The installation consisted of a vintage garment woven sculpture, short film, framed film stills and small woven hair mementos set up in a fake room setting on location. The installation explored the lives and creativity of the Messel Women, Maud Messel and her daughter Anne Countess of Rosse, who lived at Nymans.

‘Leaving Home’ raises questions around what happens when site-specific works are moved to a new setting. Further details are at http://www.caa.org.uk and http://unravelled.org.uk/

 

 

 

‘All at Sea’ in situ – on-board The Ross Tiger Trawler, Grimsby until 2nd November 2014

Vintage suits used; Navy wool and polyester St Michaels – Pale blue linen, wool mix Fox of London – Green cotton velvet Burtons – Pure wool tweed Hardy Amies.

All at Sea -  Hardy Amies All at Sea - Burtons tailorsAll at Sea - Fox of London TailorsAll at Sea - St.michealsAll at Sea -st.micheals from above

‘All at Sea’. 2014 Site specific work for The Ross Tiger Trawler, Grimsby.

‘All at Sea’ consists of four mock fishermen’s kit bags, reconstructed from men’s vintage suit jackets. These kits bags are placed on-board the Ross Tiger, within the fishermen’s sleeping quarters, below deck, using existing hooks and rails. The original construction of each suit jacket has been used as much as possible. Where this has not been possible reconstruction and re-stitching mimics’ original tailored jacket pattern construction and stitching.

In context, the kit bags act as links between the Grimsby fishermen’s very different shore and sea lives, drawing on the deckhands tradition of wearing their ‘coming on board’ and ‘going ashore’ suits. Grimsby fishermen’s Kit bags were taken on and off the trawlers after three days on land or three weeks at sea. Nicknamed the ‘three day millionaires’, Grimsby fishermen shopped in Freeman Street – known as Fishermen’s High Street – where there were tailors such as Gerald Baileys, John Collier, Alexanders and Burtons; and high street department shops like Marks and Spencer’s and Woolworths. ‘All at Sea’ uses vintage jackets from Burtons and Marks & Spencers, once in Freeman Street and also from tailors Fox and Hardy Amies, London, as the ‘three day millionaires’ would have been able to afford these brands. Like tailoring, fishing is a skilled job, just as working the ship is a skilled job.

Kit Bags carried personal items and up to four changes of clothing. As men were frequently unable to wash, a change of clothes was as good as it got. The amount of times they got changed depended on what type of trip it was. On a not so good trip, then as many times as they could – On a good trip, may not bother! Young lads hung around the quayside to carry the men’s kit bags from the taxi onto ship and from ship to taxi. The three weeks at sea and three days ashore could make for an unsettled existence. The kit bags become a metaphor for the ongoing fisherman’s transition between sea and land life.

The Ross Tiger herself holds and preserves the nostalgia for the Grimsby fishing industry.

All at Sea. A site specific work made for The Ross Tiger Trawler

A series of mock ‘sea bags’, reconstructed from men’s vintage suit jackets. In context placed around The Ross Tiger, the bags act as links between the Grimsby fishermen’s very different shore and sea lives, drawing on the deckhands tradition of wearing their ‘coming on board’ and ‘going ashore’ suits.

1. Brown,Lucy,All_at_Sea 2.Brown,Lucy,All_at_Sea,detail3

Materials used; Suit jackets; (including Burtons and Hardy Amies), eyelets. nylon cord.

techniques: unpicked, deconstructed, reconstructed, re-stitched, reclaimed.

Photographers credit – David Ramkalawon

All at Sea is currently in situ on the Tiger Ross. Part of Ebb and Flow, a 62 Group exhibition until 2nd November 2014