It's called 50 Bees The Interconnectedness of everything
Running from 1st - 22nd July
With a meet the maker slot on Friday 29th June from 6-8pm....which I'm hoping to attend.
The artist has crafted fifty ‘bee pieces’ in wool, to which fifty invited artists and makers have responded to the biodiversity of each bee.
I actually found out about the project via Facebook and Instagram, not knowing Lydia personally.
As you know- I'm into bees!
So it seemed obvious to get involved and I'm so pleased I did as it's taken my lasercutting work in a different direction
My given bee was Colletes Hederae or the ivy bee
the Ivy flower is this bees main foraging source for pollen and nectar . It also visits bristly Oxtogue and perennial wall rocket. I was lucky enough to notice a whole host of these bees busily collecting one September in my back garden, where I have a big ivy bush. So I felt a personal connection and I've always loved the geometric shape of the ivy flower. So that became my inspiration.
I made some drawings of the flowers and leaves then started designing motifs on the computer in Illustrator which could be overlapped and built up to form a kind of reef effect, a shape which is basically circular, I love circles!
As with my other lasercut mirrors, I like the idea that you are drawn to the colours and shapes of the frames initially but you are then also confronted with your own image or reflection. The idea being you consider yourself and your connection to bees and the flowers that feed them- your interconnectedness if you like.
For me most of the work is done at the design stage and one of my challenges is to get as much as I can on one illustrator file of a specific size to fit the lasercutting bed.
I won't get into the technical side of lasercutting but it is a pretty amazing machine and there is still so much I have to learn about its possibilities. I just use it to cut but you can etch with it too on lots of different materials: paper , fabric, leather and some plastics.
I now do all my lasercutting at The Bristol Design Forge in Stokes Croft, Bristol. You can get them to do everything for you there: design, files and cutting but I book a session and do it myself as I know what I need to do and it's cheaper that way.
I decided to hand paint these mirrors because I wanted more depth to the imagery and it would have been pretty difficult to try and register the screen printing of several colours. I really enjoyed the process of simplifying my painting process and I'm really pleased with the results
I have plans to make more designs inspired by other plants which bees pollenate and have started drawing possibilities. I hope to launch a few in the autumn when I'm exhibiting in Handmade in Kew.
So if you are in Somerton in July and you love bees - do pop into the Ace Arts Center.
I will also be selling my ivy mirrors in Fig.