PART 2: PROPOSED WORKS

SERIES 1: MAGICAL WALL - BARN WALL

One of the works I am proposing to build is a mobile barn wall that will carry a text encoded into the slats of the transparent structure. The words will only be legible once the sun or artificial light projects the inverted letters onto the path/road.

The shadow-drawing will be created on the ground surface by the invited community members, children and tourists. The drawing will be impermanent charcoal and or chalk. This performance element is inclusive and will enable community engagement in the process and inevitable discussion that will evolve for the action.

The text will be a series of Swedish words that are still being considered. I am looking at the double meaning or mi-interpretation in language for example BARN in English is a shed or place to protect animals and in Swedish it means child. I will create a compound word, a new word in Swedish. This compound word will be a 'protologisms' (from Greek protos, meaning 'first, original' and Greek logos, meaning 'word'; cf. prototype, protoplasm). These
invented words will be a form of linguo-poetic imagination of the final structure (1). I have organised with Ulf, the Owner of the Glass factory that I will build the work at the back of the factory, with the support of the experience artist Olav Lunde from Finspång.

  1. Wikipedia Protologism

SERIES 2: I AM JET BLACK GLASS

I have purchased 30 jet black glasses from the Rejmyre Shop. I will reinstall the 30 glasses for a week in the shop. One glass will contain a hidden Bluetooth speaker and speak from the back about being a black glass cup. These glass-cups were originally designed by Margareta Hennix, titled Amore Selterglas and featured in the 2008 Rejmyre product catalogue. The text for this work will reference the book.

SERIES 3: I AM REIJMYRE GLASS

This work is an eight-minute film I recorded last year for the Performing Labour product line, 2016. I am working on re-recording at higher resolution and considering possible modes of presentation. Sound may be included to this annealing mediation.

PRODUCT DESCRIPTION (from the Performing Labour Product Catalogue)

I am Reijmyre Glass is an eight-minute workplace moving meditation. Focusing our attention on the analogue cooling system – a glass annealing belt circa 1930’s – offers trance like qualities. The work can be viewed on a smart phone, personal computer or projector. With the assistance of I am Reijmyre Glass, find yourself slowing down and contemplating what it means to be a mechanical form.

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SERIES 4: MIRACLE LISTENER

PRODUCT DESCRIPTION (from the Performing Labour Product Catalogue)

This newly developed office/factory eavesdropping product offers unlimited local listening, easy to use handling, and portability. This hand held devices offers a sleek long neck, directing sound from the acoustically specific spherical dome base. The sophisticated combination offers effective sound resonance for comfortable listening. There are limitless applications for this device.

PART 2: WEEKS 1 - 3

ARRIVING & SETTLING IN

I have been in Sweden for a couple weeks now and it has been a mix of full-on and deep
calm. I have been settling back into the remote Swedish farm living at the residency in Kalbo and have a studio space at the Rejmyre glass factory which is about a 10 -15-minute drive.

After settling into the 200-year-old hand crafted wooden residency house we have to reestablish the ritual daily swims with Daniel, Sissi, Novi and Ian in one of the local lakes, and
long twilight deer spotting forest walks. Ian Hobbs is with me this time and is also working
on the ArtLAB website.

Over the next 4 weeks, I will be working on of a series of works evolved from last year’s
residency – Performing Labour at the Rejmyre Glass Factory. The 4 interrelated works are
responses to the Swedish industrial and farming landscapes.

PART 1 WEEK 3:  COMPLETION OF WORKS

The new “products” that we produce, as artist guest-­workers, will be presented/disseminated as interventions into the historical and contemporary narratives of the factory. These products will be embedded in the history of the factory in two primary ways: 1) by installing them in the Rejmyre Glass Factory Museum, amongst the other historical objects on display and 2) in the form of a catalogue of conceptual products, in the style of industrial product catalogues/indexes. (1)

The final week was a very intense working on the final series of work for the product catalogue. After 3 weeks many relationships and collaborations had been established and an understanding of our distinct ways of performing labour. My final work was divided into 2 series: A collection of glass listening-devices and 2 meditative films.

1. GLASS LISTENING WORKS

This week I had my glassblowing session with John. He blew more that 8 pieces in 2 hour. He took on the challenge and mastered the form. He attempted to fulfill my desire to add a small wipe of red to the clear glass but this proved to be difficult. As I had already discovered, the Rejmrye Red is difficult and expensive, in fact the red I was looking for was not in stock, generally only used for special products, due to cost. We tested blue and dark orange but the conclusion was that clear would be the best solution. From the series of 8 glass pieces one contains a recording of Stefan Orstofsson - the Rejmyre Antique Dealer and glass specialist telling the mythical story about the lost recipe of Rejmyre Red glass the work is title Rejmyre Red Recipe.

2. FILMIC OBSERVATIONS

The annealing table is a work of pure observation or quiet anticipation. The annealing table is the most contemplative place in the factory. The annealing table exists at a snail pace, it gives birth to the glass objects. The steel wire skin carries the works out and presents them as successes or cracked rejects. This table is mesmeric offering—a place of intoxicating calm.

There are two versions; the second version includes the audio of Sissi instructing the glassblowers in a meditation about heat, one of Daniel’s exercises. The work is titled I am Rejmyre Glass.

Like wise drink fountain was another captivating film study made in the first week and then revisited in the concluding week. The continuous running water is for quenching the thirst of the glassblowers. While filming on the last day in the factory one of the glass blowers noticed that I was filming and signaled that he would take part and perform in my film. This was a collaborative act and a glorious moment. 

IN CONCLUSION

The 3-­week process was intense and deeply focused. The framework of Performing Labour offered a springboard to establish new thinking and offer a platform to engage with the processes of other artists; observing one another to develop ideas and then put them aside to make room for new investigations. The question is… when is an idea ready to be freely disposable. The Art Lab/spaced 3: north by southeast residency is generous opportunity, thanks to Daniel and Sissi’s commitment, calmness and creative intelligence. The collaborative individualism was successful in this group but I can imagine not all artists would be comfortable to give over to such communing. It is rare to observe the process of other artists so intimately…I appreciate the experience and look forward to the second part in 2017.

  1. Except from Daniel Peltz' proposal for the residency/workshop

PART 1 WEEK 2: DEVELOPING PRODUCTS

Within this context, the workers inhabit a state of dual-­consciousness, their labour becoming both process and product, embodied and disembodied. (1)

After the first week of workshops and exercises this week became more focused upon ideas development and then creating a product. The idea of product was discussed and pulled apart. The product didn't need to be a tangible object, although in the end everyone created at least 1 glass product. It was hard to resist the pull of the molten glass especially as Rejmyre is one of last surviving glass factories in Sweden. Daniel and Sissi had negotiated with the management that each artist would have an opportunity to work with the master glass blower John. We could work with him for a limited 2-­hour session at a set hourly rate. To effectively work with the glass blower we had to develop a very clear concept that could be discuss and completed with John—one artist per day in the 2 hour session. This was creatively challenging for all; firstly for the artists’ to resolve a strong idea and for John to interpret and technically produce the work in glass within such a short time frame – pressure was on.

Much research was undertaken during the week. Ulf the owner of the factory supplied us with many historical books. One that I spent a lot of time with was titled Glass: The Miracle Maker – from 1940’s; the Rejmyre factory remains frozen in this time zone so this book was relevant to the space.

In the second week the performance studies scholar Ioana Jucan joined the group as ethnographer-­in‐residence. She conducted an ethnography of the labour at the Rejmyre Glasbruk, while the artist-­as-­guest-­workers developed the product. This entailed discussion and feedback sessions with all the workers in the factory during the Performing Labour residency. These interviews where recorded and will assist in Ioana’s conclusive report.

Towards the end of the week many of us needed supplies to complete our products. We made a trip to Norrkoping’s amazing electronics supplies Kjell&Co. Ardino boards, discrete mp3 players and small headphones where purchased. In the limited time available I decide to use a ready made sound systems but intend to develop a specifically programmed ardino board for the next phase—the residency in 2017.

Quote of the week

 I am happy to hear you are doing fine. (2)
  1. Excerpt from Daniel Petz’s proposal for the residency/workshop.
  2. From the Roy Andersson’s film A Pigeon Sat on a Branch Reflecting on Existence (Swedish: En duva satt på en gren och funderade på tillvaron), 2014.

PART 1 WEEK 1: PERFORMING LABOUR INTRODUCTION WORKSHOPS & EXERCISES

From within this artist guest-­worker position, we will work on the factory floor, maintaining the same hours as the other workers and in equal view of the tourists, to develop and produce a series of non-­functional products in response to the situation of our own labour and the labour of others around us [tourists, tour guides, factory workers, administrators, shoppers, sales people, museum staff, etc]. (1)

We had a very intensive week in the factory starting each morning at 6:15am with the glass workers. We positioned ourselves in a very orderly fashion behind the tourist view space. We are there to be viewed and observed by the tourists, glass workers and management. The days have been filled with group exercises/workshops, meditation, conceptual challengers and collaborative discussion about each persons proposed product development. Nothing is out of bounds and there is so much opportunity to develop ideas individually as well as through the supportive critical feedback of the group. Slowly we are starting to get to know the glass workers and this allows for an opportunity to understand from the other side.

Things I have noticed and thought about since arriving at the glass factory this week:

  • The glass workers move their bodies a lot…never remaining long in the same position – whether they are sitting or standing.
  • There is a significant relationship between the blower and the other - they are tied together in a symbiotic relationship. They need each other.
  • They work off signals both verbal and non-verbal body movements. A lot of sensing between the two eg. a tap of the blowers foot means the wooden form is to open.
  • Audio recording the glass blowing and breaking process…a form of eaves dropping …the works that are not perfect
  • Continuous running water tap always at the ready for the glass blower.

Alongside the very full days the group come together in the evening for a swim at a, still chilly, lake. Then we meet again for a meal together, lovingly prepared by one of the artists. And occasionally, a short or long walk through the farming lands and woods before going to bed in full daylight.

Artist-­Guest-­Workers:

Sissi Westerburg -SWE; Daniel Peltz -­USA/SWE; Alex Auriema -­USA, Filip Olszewski -­USA; Robyn Backen – AUS

 1 . Excerpt from Daniel Petz’s proposal for the residency/workshop

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