Monday, 25 June 2012

Hope's Whisper publication

There's a little publication to accompany the exhibition Hope's Whisper at the Bronte Parsonage Museum.

It's A5 size and 16 colour pages - and each is hand stamped on the cover.
Jenna Holmes, the Arts Officer for the Bronte Parsonage Museum, has written a forward and it has images throughout showing most of the artwork in the exhibition.

They are for sale in the Museum shop for £3 - a bargain!

Friday, 22 June 2012

Opening Preview

Last night was the preview of Hope's Whisper at the Bronte Parsonage Museum.
It was apt that it rained.

However, lots of people braved the weather and came along to see the exhibition - it was really good to see so many people in the Museum.
The exhibition consists of the work in the garden; work in one of the cabinets in the Museum (the Shackleton weather records, the Babbage Report, plus 2 Bronte letters and a Bronte poem); and then 8 framed works in the foyer, along with the weather archive showing all the collected weather cards.

The images above show the three works in the cabinet along with the Shackleton Records.

Thanks to everyone that turned up to celebrate the opening.
The show continues until 5th September.

Visit the Bronte Parsonage Museum for times and admission charges to the Museum:

Thursday, 21 June 2012

Installing the exhibition

Yesterday we started to install the work for the exhibition ready for the preview tonight.

I started with installing the outside piece of work called '3 Bells'.
It's been fun making this piece of work, but has also given me a full case of brain ache too. The principle is this: there are 3 bells - one rings when it rains, one rings if it's windy and the third rings by solar power. It's a reference to the pseudonyms that the Bronte sisters published their works under: Currer, Acton and Ellis Bell.
When reading their novels i worked out which sister mentioned different weather elements the most - so it turns out that Emily mentions wind the most in Wuthering Heights; Charlotte mentioned precipitation (rain, snow, etc) the most in Jane Eyre and Anne mentions sunshine the most in Tenant of Wildfell Hall. The colour wheels in the exhibition are also based on this too.

The sculpture is situated in the Bronte Museum garden at the front of the house. The solar rotors work even in dull weather (which turns out to be quite handy in this spectacularly awful summer we're having so far), but it has to be a pretty stiff breeze to get the wind one to ring, plus it'll have to rain for a few hours to get the rain bell to sound. Looks like it might ring a few times tonight during the opening...

Tuesday, 19 June 2012

Wrapped Up

It's the opening of the exhibition on Thursday night - how did that come around so fast?

Anyhow, i'm in that phase of work known in the trade as panic. I have made lists and sub lists off the main lists, but they never seem to get shorter...

Last night i mirror plated my framed works (2 A1 graphs, 3 colour wheels and 3 prints) - although it's a job that needs doing, i never really predict and allow for the amount of time it will take to find the mirror plates - with screws that fit and wont split the wood; a drill bit that's the right size; a screw driver with the right head; tape measure and sharp pencil etc etc... I spent quite a lot of time wandering about the house going back up and down the stairs to look for various tools etc. Anyhow, it's done. And everything is wrapped too, ready to go.

I now just have to finish the three sculptures for the garden, collect and stamp the little catalogue, cut and stamp another 60 archive cards and pack everything ready to get picked up tomorrow morning. Easy.

Wednesday, 13 June 2012

Haworth Weather Archive x 2

I spent the weekend cutting out index cards for the weather archive - i haven't seen any i like for sale, so in a rash moment i though it would be ok to make my own. So far i've cut out over 200 and then stamped each with a date. My fingers hurt a bit. However they look exactly how i want them.

The booklet went to the printer on Monday and can't wait to see it when it comes back within the week - Thomas Saible, who designed it, has done a beautiful job as always.

I also went to Haworth yesterday to see the weather collectors and collect their cards from the last couple of months. It was good to catch up and i showed them some of the work that will be in the exhibition.

Amongst other things today i'm framing the three colour wheels showing the weather types mentioned in Wuthering Heights, Jane Eyre and The Tenant of Wildfell Hall. Lots to do.

Friday, 8 June 2012

Haworth Weather Archive

All of yesterday i sorted through all the weather cards that my team of volunteer weather collectors have gathered since October 2011.
When i asked the collectors to do a record every day i wondered how many would stick with it - and i presumed we might miss a few days here and there where we were all busy or on holiday etc...

However, i spent the day feeling rather overwhelmed with their dedication and commitment to the project. We have multiple records for everyday - and i suspect there is a couple of collectors who haven't missed one day of recording.
I feel privileged that i've been allowed a little glimpse into the collectors lives - through family events (good and bad), mixed health and everyday issues - they have spent time noting the weather and jotting it down for the archive.

The finished archive will be on display in the Bronte Parsonage Museum during the exhibition - you'll be able to pick a date and see what the weather was doing in Haworth (and surrounding villages) and how it affected everyone on that particular date.

Tuesday, 5 June 2012

Charlotte's Print

Overcome with national pride, I've spent today* framing some of the finished prints ready for the exhibition at the Parsonage in a couple of weeks time. 
I've worked on 3 prints (one for each Bronte sister - Anne, Emily and Charlotte) and each is made up of layers of hand written weather data taken from the weather diaries of Abraham Shackleton during the time of the Bronte's lives. The numbers represent the weather observations on the days and weeks leading up to each of their deaths.

I've made the works dense and unreadable. They look a little like woven material.

*Today is the Queen's jubilee - and although she might be able to afford to take 4 days off 'work' and fund day after day of party celebrations (she is paying for all of it, right?): I can't.

Friday, 1 June 2012

Sneak Preview

I've been working every day on the work ready for the final exhibition later this month, and i've not had time to blog much.
I did a couple of session in the print rooms at UCLAN  and i was able to finish my screen prints which i'm pretty pleased with.
I've also been trying to take images of the work ready for the booklet and also the invite that will go out to the mailing lists in a few days time.

As a sneak preview the above image is of a piece of work that will be shown in the Bronte Parsonage Museum: a letter by Charlotte Bronte where i've highlighted the weather references with bright yellow marker pen.
The photograph was taken by Gavin Renshaw.