Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Scissors, paper, stone

Wakefield Museums recently secured funding from Arts Council England to commission an artist to create an installation using museum objects in an innovative and exciting way in a special showcase in Wakefield One – the building in which Wakefield Museum is based. 

Local artist Rachel Sim will be using 5 stone heads from the museum's collections in a piece called ‘Scissors Paper Stone’.  Rachel will explore the themes of renewal, reinvention and the passing of time in Wakefield.  She will create a series of sketchbook drawings of the architecture, patterns and textures of Wakefield.  These will inspire structures and prints that will be formed into a 3D installation -a cardboard city. The stone heads (from buildings in Wakefield) will then be placed on plinths within the cardboard city, allowing the viewer to peak through and spot them. The installation will be in place from 23 November.

In the meantime come along to Wakefield Museum today, 
25 September 5pm -7.30pm and have a go at printmaking with Rachel Sim. Drop in and take part in creating a large scale relief print of Wakefield or make images to take home with you. This event is suitable for everyone, children and adults, and is free. 

This event is part of the Wakefield Artwalk

Drop in at any time between 5pm and 7.30pm

Thanks to Rachel for this guest blog post:

Last week I met up with John Whitaker, a curator, and we paid a visit to Wakefield museum storeroom.

As with many museums only a small selection of the collection can be displayed due to lack of space. The Warehouse in a secret location holds a huge selection of Wakefields history. Objects that have been collected, found and donated fill up this space.

The shelves are stacked full of intriguing objects and artefacts where every item is carefully numbered and archived. The collection ranges from a giant old fire engine to piles of boxes holding all sorts of important little bits and pieces.

The main reason for my visit was to examine the 5 keystones to be shown as part of the installation - Scissors Paper Stone, which I am currently working on with Wakefield Museum and Council. This installation will be on show from Mid November.

After John very carefully removed these from the shelf (which is second nature to him but looked terrifying to me) we measured and detailed the stone heads and I had the opportunity to take some photos for reference.


The heads have some lovely details carved onto them including a rose, pearls and buttons for the females and two beards, one straight and one curly for the gents.

The details of where these stone heads originated is unknown but it is likely that they were once part of a building on the Westgate that was torn down. These stone heads are the remains.

As part of the project I have recently been taking photos and exploring the details of Wakefield's varied architecture. In my research I am looking at past and present buildings and have started to make drawings and prints, which I feel reflect the city.

I will be running a drop in workshop as part of the Wakefield Artwalk where anyone is very welcome to join me in looking at the city through doing some basic relief printmaking.

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