Thursday, 5 April 2012

Mecha - (Insert Subject Here)

As part of one of are modules ICP we have to identify who we are and what we are all about. This in turn will hopeful give use as makers a clear and well round idea of what we want to create. This module has been delivered to us in several parts and has two lots of assessments this make up a final grade added to our EXM marks. For the first task we had to collected 50words and Pictures that have some sort of emotive or aesthetic value for us then we where asked to use the images and words to produce sketches of things we like and wanted to explore. From the sketches we have to produce small models and sample that reflected are ideas.

From these sketches and ideas we where asked to produce a statement of intent, it should describe what we have learnt and what we believe to be are practice, What I want to do and how I intent on doing it. Its quite odd, I honestly believe that I had a good idea of what I was doing and what I wanted to do; to some extent I do but its not quite how I perceived it. In faced there are some parts of it that I still have no idea about and this is exceptionally irritating. But I have come to some clarity about my work and what it is I’m doing and the answers to these question where already very prescient in my mind and I didn’t even know.

From a very early age I have been exposed to three very pivotal ideas and this ideas I think work together amazingly well. I uses this ideas to understand the world around me, these ideas have guided my hand and they make me how I am. There have been time when my ideas have clashed but, I believe this is because they have become out of balance, distorted beyond recognition. One of this ideas is something that I owe my Grandfather a great deal for. My grandfather was or I guess is still an engineer and a man of science. Almost all of my early conversation that I can remember with him have be driven by questions about the world I live in. The answers where often detailed and easy for me to understand in turn this has allowed me to explore the information and build a detailed image of the world around me. But I don’t see trees instead I see chemical conversion factories, the heart isn’t a muscle but a hydraulic pump and the wings on a bird are no different to the wing on a racing car just up side down.

I have always done this for as long as I can remember, I describe the whole world around me like on big machine. I do it with every thing even things that don’t exist or so large that the comprehension of them is over whelming (hence why I change it). I even describe my self as a cog in a machine with a job and a very specific work load. I see society as a machine, planet earth is a machine and I myself am a machine. Know the next bit I’m going to describe is a little fuzzy to me so if it’s a lot fuzzy to you then its my bad. This is the part that one of my other ideas gets evolved, I am a mechanic and an engineer I look after my engines, pumps and machines; I clean them when they are dirty, I change there oil and filters, I modify and repair them, replacing the old for new and in time the old has been completely changed and now is new. But I also built them, I took time to design them and study every aspect of them. We are a father and mother, we have children; we clean them when they are dirty, we care for them when they are sick, and through education, nutrition and exercise we help the grow and change into the next generation.

So who watch earth, who picks it up when it falls, who change its parts and who took all that time to design it? For the governments are just cogs as am I, they just perform a different task from you or I; think of the as gages or screens that show information about what’s happing. Or buttons that when press make one part of the machine work different for good or bad.

I have Learnt that I describe my world in mechanical terms, I use scientific theory and ideas to build pictures of the hide world that lies in front of me. I use my study of machines, electronics and engines to allow me to understand people, society and even Gaia. The weirdest thing is I left a job I loved and dreamed of because it was to much. So in order for me to express my self and my ideas I should use a method that fits me well and this is the mechanical representations of my idea and thoughts through forging, machining, and fabrication of metals and other mediums as I see fit.


Monday, 2 April 2012


As part of the BA (hons) course we are expected to partake in subjects such as cultural studies and Discourse. These subjects are put in place in order to help use as contemporary artist and crafts people understand the world that we work in. This in turn allows use to develop more conscious pieces of work that not only feed are ideas to the right ordinance but allows use to push them; creating more unique and interesting work.

There has been a recent change to the current curriculum and now as part of cultural studies we must produce a piece of art work to accompany are written work. This piece has to be directly influenced by the topic in the brief and we must also talk about it in are written work. I think it is a unique idea and in all honesty its quite appalling to me. It makes quite a refreshing change to be able to work on an idea or concept without having to necessarily paying much attention to aesthetic detail. “The aesthetics suit the idea and mealy embellish it.”

The above two paragraphs are my ideas and no one else please don’t take them as gospel

We where offered two subjects to write about the first was landscape and the natural world and the other is travel and tourism. Quite open don’t you think, its interesting how people reacted to such open questions. As part of the criteria we have to talk about common and alternative idea and how people have chose to use them in there work. Before the selection of are chosen subject we where given lectures based on both of the subjects. These lectures where structured with the idea of giving us and insight into some views on current cultural idea.

I have chosen landscape and the natural world and how we as humans view it. It is an interesting dynamic which has multiple faces, some of use viewing open fields of golden wheat as comforting and romantic where as others view it as massive scares of abnormality. Or how the confines of a house protect use from the world out side or trap use and leave use numb and desensitised. For most of use we interacted with landscapes and the natural world based on cultural ideas. But there are some more radical ideas of landscape and how we reacted with it.

One of this ideas is that the world we live in is alive it is an organism just like me and you. It is a theory developed by a man called James Lovelock and it is called the Gaia hypothesise. I love this idea, in fact some of my earliest and most vivid ideas just prove to fuel my ideas about Gaia. The idea that She (Gaia, the Greek goddess of the earth) was self regulating, aware and in balance, She keeps order and she is ruthless.

James Lovelock talks about the gentle balance that the earth exits in he describes how we are all part of systems that has limits. He also talks about some unique and interesting information that has been discovered through scientific research. Like how the very first photosynthesises (plants) almost wiped themselves out, they where so good at there job that the poisoned there own atmosphere. They just did what we are doing they made to much oxygen and we are doing the same making to much carbon.

There are also some more interesting idea brought to light by James, ideas that have some very deep and profound meaning. For an organism to be called and organism there is one simple rule it must follow to be able to reproduce. And a first glance you would think that this is impossible, but look again and you will see Her seeds every where. It is just an idea but it explains a lot we are Her seeds, we are the means of reproduction. We have and always will desire exploration, we crave the un none and we won’t let any thing get in are way. Science has or will have soon the technology and understanding to Teraform (changing a dead planet into one that humans can live on) other plants. Its isn’t really the case of if but more when; I think the more potent question is are we ready could we become the teenage mother to a bastard son.

James Lovelock talks about his theory in great detail in his book Gaia. The ideas he has developed are based in science and he has spent time studying and researching every aspect of them. His idea can seem at time radical and are hard to hear sometimes but I believe I is talking with a great deal of clarity. I have started work on some image that I want to use for my essay. The are human form but mechanical in structure the final pieces are meant to represent a mother or Gaia carrying a child or earth. Gaia herself is mechanical to represent man creating her child. I think.


I have Virtues that others deem vices.
Virtues that guide me and together have made me.
I embrace pain, suffering and sacrifice and gain strength from obsession.
It is true they have given me scares that will never fade and for that I am grateful.
Because they show me what is within me and within my reach of me.
And through all of this I live each day with out compromise, with out regret and with out excuse.
So as I endure the misfortune that lies in my path I chase down my vision with out diversion or regret.
And in the pursuit of my passions neither timid nor afraid.
I am Relentless

I love this poem it is part of a ad campaign for the energy drink Relentless. I can’t find who actually wrote it but its something that has been close to my heart since I first saw it. Relentless uses of words and images provoke quite a lot emotion in the ad and it is nice to see a leave of intellectual and motivation imagery used in an advert. I am aware that this is intentional in order to sell produced but at the same time it is inspirational.

I have recently used this poem as part of my ICP module. It is a pieces that I find my self turning to quite a lot. I am a strong believer in words and the affect they can have on the mind and how they can drive a person on or completely destroy them. As part of the ad campaign they also used some very emotive pieces of poetry that where place on there drinks cans. One of the poets was Edgar Allan Poe an american poet from the 19th century. They used two lines from his poem the raven. After reading from the can I went on to buy a book of poems by Edgar.

Deep into that darkness peering, long I stood there wondering,
fearing,Doubting, dreaming dreams no mortals ever dared to dream before;

The Raven Edgar Allen Poe.

I don’t think relentless will make me amazing but this words might.

Sunday, 1 April 2012


Finished EXM piece by Dan Moss

“It is not wise to be one side, time should be spent making all sides equally” Miyamoto Musashi

Miyamoto Musashi was a Samurai in the late 15th century and was heralded as one of Japans greatest warriors. He devoted himself to the study of the sword and came to profound understand of life. In order to be anything one must understand everything, no part of ones life should be undeveloped. This is a simple idea but can lead to one sideness.

The idea is well known and in its simplest form is understood but is rarely practiced. Mind, body and spirit or soul in balance we have all seen it and I guess most of use would like to believe that we are balanced. I can safely say I am not for the mere idea of trying to achieve balance is counter intuitive. I should nether search nor wait to find what is not lost.

Miyamoto was a master of balance, he was intelligent, wise, brave, strong, skilled and holy. Through study, training and meditation he became unbeatable and never lost a fight, he kill all of his appoints. But Miyamoto was never a hired sword and had no master in faced the idea of calling him a Samurai is a little odd. He was a poet, a painter, a writer, a monk and lastly a worrier.

I also really enjoy his idea on Zen and the concept of Bushido; both ways of life that go about the same thing very differently. Most Samurai practiced both Zen Buddhism and Bushido one the way of the warrior and the other the way of the enlightened, both ways create equilibrium and the scales are balanced.

For myself the idea of balance in my work is important, I am not seeking an aesthetic of balance but the idea. If the idea of the material is light in weigh then it should look so but when it is held it should feel heavy. This in turn confuse and challenges the participants senses and ideas, opening the mind and waking the spirit.

Checking that carved porcelain bowls fitted the mild steel bars that I had forged from 10mm round bar and the copper forged wedges held them in place.

This is my concept and in turn I hope to challenge the ideas of people and make them think about hum they our and how they fit into there own world. I have chosen the life of a samurai and I use both Zen and Bushido in my work.

Stop looking at what isn’t there and see what is.

Finished EXM Piece by Dan Moss