I find myself pushing myself to damage the skin, as I deem it too precious of an object to destroy. Of course, this is annoying, as the whole reason that I collected it was to cut it and utilise it to craft my embrace sculptures, but I feel like it’s a form of prop, or artefact of the being that it was discarded from (much like my fascination with bones). The most fascinating thing about it, was the fact that as I discussed it with David Fitzjohn, he brought up the idea that I myself am an art piece; ‘Ethan Dodd’ is a character, much like the way that artists such as Joseph Beuys conducted himself; always dressing the same, always acting and speaking in a certain manner, in Beuys case, so that he may influence the development of Art through his own life.
We discussed the idea that I could carry myself in a certain way to influence how others perceive me; What a notion! That I could be conducting myself either consciously, or sub-consciously, to carve out a persona for myself amongst others, is fascinating. I was not aware that I did this, but it can be seen that I have done so in the past in order to strengthen my likeability, or uniqueness, amongst peers. We also discussed the shamanistic aspects of my art; often focused on life or death, and often consisting of very brutal, earthy sculptures and paintings; as well as some form of remains of an animal. Could I utilise my space as an art installation? The idea that I work in a certain incredibly aesthetic way, could be classed as the artwork itself, fascinates me to no end. It is an interesting notion, but one that could be quite hard to pull off. I suppose I will have to ruminate on it further.
I then cut the skin. I took a deep breath and destroyed it, but there was a release of endorphins once I had done it; I felt an excitement wash over me as I began to stuff it and form it into a coil, which resulted in me bursting one end of the skin, but only slightly. It is an interesting idea, as it actually seems to look like I have torn off part of a snake, but it doesn’t seem like it is the right way to pursue such an idea, I prefer the skin as a translucent pattern, rather than utilised in a three-dimensional object. However, I still had the tights, and I wanted to craft a solid form from them.
As I had no plaster, I utilised emulsion, which I then wrung the majority out of the tights, resulting in them becoming saturated with the white paint. What happened next was fascinating; the emulsion dried over a period of a few hours, and I was left with a rock-solid, hardened and quite heavy lump of tights and white. It looks odd, as if someone has squished up some wet, dirty tights or skin, and left it out, but it is solid and dry. It seems like this may be an interesting path to go down.