Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Balance: patina and production

My blog profile indicates that as an artist I make every endeavour to use reclaimed or salvaged materials in my work. Sometimes that is not possible; and sometimes people just don't like the look of aged, recycled, patinated or rusted metal. My brother told me recently that I could sell a lot more of my work if the material was shiny and fitted into modern houses.

The challenge for me is to create enough unique pieces and in a variety of materials to meet different tastes and demand for my beaten metal pieces. I have decided that where possible I will continue to use reclaimed and recycled materials (with all its history and natural patinas); but will balance that with shiny new material.

Today Fiona's dad (Graham) and I did a round trip of four hours to take delivery of the above four sheets of metal. All nice and shiny and all .9m x 1.8m - so pretty big really!! Two sheets are copper (.55mm and .7 mm thick) and two sheets of brass (.8mm thick) - I'm thinking that will keep me going for quite some time on the new and shiny front.

However on the recycled front Fiona and I are off for a forage around second hand and 'collectable' places to see if we can score more jardinieres and copper laundry boilers that have the lovely patinas such as that above.

I find it interesting that in art as in life it is all about trying to stay true to principles and yet also finding the balance; and not being closed to suggestions and challenges.


  1. Love your art work! I'm addicted to patinas and rust. I don't know why ... just do! I think patinas and rust are the most beautiful additions to vintage looking pieces. I love it to pick up rusty and grungy stuff from the street. I'm always looking at the ground wherever I go, hoping to see something interesting to incorporate in my art work. matter ;-)

    Greetings from Germany,

  2. Yes, I think you are stay open to new paths and new discoveries an an artist, I think is very exciting and keeps it interesting! (even though I am a die hard rust and patina lover)

  3. yes... brand shiny new is nice... and will be even better when you do your stuff with it... but... oh, i like texture!

  4. dorothy sayers said that the first thing a principle does is kill someone. principles in balance. not so easy to figure out. honor all the matal, old and new.

  5. GB, S, V, OSTL - Thanks for your comments - it is great to be part of a global community. My brother left a message on the answer machine wondering if he had damaged me for life - joke. We did have a good conversation about how different tastes are in terms of shiny verses patina - agreed that there is a place for it all - and at times one needs to choose the material to suit the design as well as the target audience. That gives us artist types more scope to play - yeah! B


Comments are welcomed - it is good to connect with fellow travellers.