18 boxes to represent my life

stacked cardboard box sculpture
Boxes stacked in my studio

I’ve made a lot of progress on my sculpture that is going to be installed at The Henry Moore Foundation in Hertfordshire in May. The sculpture will consist of 18 boxes that stack on top of each other and will show images inspired by old family photographs and memories of my childhood. I’ve re-used boxes around the house and at uni, you can see that wine is well represented!

The stacked boxes are a reference to the exquisite corpse game or Head, Bodies and Legs game. 18 boxes with 6 sides each, 108 surfaces to cover. That’s a lot of images to create. I have almost finished creating the figures, so that’s 36 sides taken care of, leaving me 72 sides to cover with different images.

coloured stacked cardboard box sculpture
Testing out an image on the boxes

There’s a lot of work involved, each box has to be made secure adding paper mâché  to smooth out any ridges and make the box strong. Next the box is painted with gesso so that paint can be applied smoothly. Each side of the box is spray painted a different colour. Lastly I create the images to go onto the box. The images are a mix of painting, collage and mark making with a China pencil or Oil Pastels. The images will then be laser printed and stuck onto the boxes and sealed so that they don’t get damaged. I intend to keep the original images so that I can use them in other work, possibly paintings.

drawing of exquisite corpse
A drawing from my sketchbook

Here are some sketches of figures I might create. I have used photographs together with old Vogue magazines of the 60s to inform my designs in terms of style and patterns.

hand made collage papers
Hand made collage papers – wet strength tissue paper and Acrylic paint

I have made collage papers which I am using in the work. Although the boxes are multi-coloured most of the images are in shades of green. I have chosen green because part of the brief is to respond to the site at Perry Green in Hertfordshire and this year’s theme of vitality. For me green represents the colour of the countryside around Moore’s site and also new growth, new shoots etc.

hopscotch image
Hopscotch Game – Oil Pastel

This image represents a favourite game from my childhood, Hopscotch, I wonder if you remember playing this?

The exhibition will run from 10th to 14th of May with a talk by the exhibiting artists on Friday 12th May. If you want to find out more, please get in touch.

What do you think of my ideas? I’d love to know, please get in touch and share your thoughts.

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