This image was chosen as a relflection of the winter landscape.WIlliam Neill, Burnt Trees and Shadows on Snow, Blacktail Plateau, Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming, c2000. Reproduced courtesy of the artist and The Exploratorium®, San Francisco by Paul Doherty and Pat Murphy, Traces of Time: the beauty of change in nature (San Francisco, Chronicle Books, 2000), 11.

 Genre: The Cultural Scavenger

Overall this has made me aware that it is “The Otherness” that intrigues me. And in trying to give myself a label I came up with “Cultural Scavenger”, that I’m continually scrapping away at these influences to get to a point of resolution. In some ways this is best summed up by Pekka Kuusisto when he talks about the inspiration and influences of landscape and music to his creativity and relates to how I feel about my own creativity in the art realm:

“This landscape, you can feel that’s been here for ever and this puts things into perspective, and that we are only here for a very short moment in time. And the same thing with music as well, cause it’s been around forever and I’m sort of touching it just a little bit and then I’m gone but music is going to be forever.”¹

The responses that were received in regards to both the ARI report and the presentation were both interesting and varied. With the ARI report on Northcity4 two questions were raised. The first was, “What are the advantages of pooling resources with other jewellers and object makers?” And I think it comes down to two factors, they are economics and space. With regards to money by pooling resources amongst a few people there is a greater chance of being able to afford bigger tools and equipment that if you yourself tried to buy, it may take some time to afford. The only draw back is that it needs to be made clear to all involved that an agreement is made if anybody should leave the studio and their monetary share  of it. And with the ability to share space this comes down to able to go somewhere that hasn’t the distractions of home and if you wish to make something using metalsmithing techniques having proper soundproofing. The second question was, “What are the advatages of being in hte proximity of other creative fields of practice?”³With the second question for myself, I think sharing a workshop with others already working in their chosen areas, would be both instructional in a technical sense and moral support as well. I know from experience that when you first finish any sort of creative course that unless you have some sort of network to be able to access that it can be hard to continue  being creative without sacrificing it to living and trying to make enough money to get by. I hope that by being around like-minded people that I will still get enough impetus to continue on regardless of that.

For the presentation most of the feedback I received was based on how I had structured the talk and my rather large collection of books. Through basing the presentation on book genres to give it a grounding and a mapping this made it clearer for those to understand how I came to the key themes that are important to my work. By also declaring my obsession for book collecting I made myself as a person accessible and heard more than a few stories of others and their book collecting or people that they knew that also collected and were readers.

In conclusion what I gained from doing these two parts from the folio was a greater clarity of what are the driving forces and influences in my work and what types of outcomes I can possibly expect when I finish my degree.

1. Swedish Folk Song, Who’s Going to Heat up the Sauna, from 4-The soundtrack. Pekka Kuusisto (violin/ vocals). FFC, NSWFTO, Vast Productions/ Australian Broadcasting Corporation, 2007, compact disc.

2. Oliver Smith. email message to the author, April 19. 2012.

3. Oliver Smith, email message to the author, April 19, 2012.

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