Problems with installation

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For January I was allocated a difficult almost corridor-like space which leading to the stairs to the mezzanine offices.  From the entrance of the space directly ahead was a gap that led to the stairs and the walls were either side.  In discussion with my supervisors we came up with the idea of adding another wall to the back to conceal this area, as you can see in the first picture above, and giving me a much more workable space.

There were a number of problems with this installation that I need to keep in mind for July (and beyond!)

One of the biggest problems was the humidity in the studios which warped all of my paper dramatically.  Not only that, it warped all the paper differently!  Never having worked with prints before it didn’t occur to me that the grain of the paper would be different on different prints, but I discovered this was the case when some of them warped top to bottom and others side to side, and they bowed out from the wall by a good 20cm.

The translucent papers seemed to fare better (perhaps because they are slightly waxy in texture?) although the thinest ones looked the worse for wear by the end of the week.  I need to be wary of the materials I use, and I also need to consider how to hang them given the humidity.  As you can see in the images above to avoid the excessive curling I had to secure the paper to the wall at the corners, and it is still evident that the paper is trying to curl at the edges.

I need to become better at installing my artwork to create interest in the space and to encourage more connections between artworks.  One of the criticisms I received was around the symmetrical layout of space.  I chose to hang it this way because I didn’t consider these works together as a series (rather I was presenting a number of strategies or threads) and wanted to avoid having a wall of this and a wall of that.  I know it was quite clumsy, so this is something I want to note for consideration when I install in July.

One thing I thought was successful about the installation was the work on the far wall: I wrote this in a language I can’t speak. The subtlety of the image makes it difficult not only to photograph, but also to see clearly in a white cube.  That being said, the subtlety is an important part of the work itself.  I remedied this by adding a rectangle of graphite drawn straight onto the wall behind it, and hanging the work slightly out from the wall.  The graphite behind lifted the cut letters just enough, and the layered effect only added to the reading of the work.

I’m really happy with how the space looked with the added wall.  I’m also happy with many of the works individually.  I now need to be conscious of the selection and presentation.

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