Friday, 8 January 2016

Emergency Medical Kit, a German Dictionary, Silica Gel, Half a Tea Strainer...


Quiz question for the day: what do these objects have in common?

Answer: they are all examples of Dormant Things, yet more objects of limited use, pulled from their hiding places in my attic and in the nooks and crannies of the studio. 


Apart from a rather lovely visit to Pye Bank Primary School on Tuesday, I have been working at home this week. There have been a lot of back emails to plough through (groan) but, in between, I have been working on the Dormant Things projectfilling the rest of the sketchbook I started before Christmas.


Posting some of this work on social media has brought out many interesting points. Should we be working towards getting rid of much of the clutter we gather around ourselves, or are our personal reasons for keeping things of dubious value justification enough, no matter how daft they might seem? I have managed to dump some truly pointless items, like the half a tea strainer above (kept in case it came in handy) and the anonymous key in the bottom sketch. Objects with symbolic or sentimental significance are mostly staying put.


Sentimental objects have given rise to another interesting discussion: items like the candle-sticks below, which John and I found on our honeymoon, are often the guardians and triggers of important memories. We tend to take photographs of significant people and places, but not significant objects. But, if you sketch the object, does the sketch take over the role of memory-guardian and allow you to release the object into the wild? I think for me, the answer is 'sometimes'. I am more likely to let go, if the object could be loved by a new owner and have another life, instead of sitting in the dark forever.


I'm having a lot of fun with this project and, as you can see, it's provoking a lot of thought. I've now completed the whole of this concertina book, but I have of course only scratched the surface and will continue to reveal the dark underbelly of my hoarded clutter... 


5 comments:

Isobel said...

Such an interesting project! When I was studying for my degree, I looked at all the unimportant things that gather in charity shops - the chipped mug and the jug that was a souvenir from Tenby. They all take on a melancholic quality when they're displaced don't they? And they almost become a currency, going from car boot sale to charity shop to home and so on. I've got a 50 year old severed plait too! My own, I hasten to add - not from a charity shop. That's going a bit too far!

Lynne the Pencil said...

Ha ha ha! That would be a WEIRD find, wouldn't it?

Love your thought around charity shops. I love the sadness of them all having a rich back-story, but one that nobody will ever know.

Barbara said...

I found this quote by Sallyann on another blog site and thought it was good.

'Our treasures are like the paper plates in the picnic of life. Once we are finished with them, they are of little or no use to someone else.'

I am now rethinking some of the stuff I have put aside for my grandchildren!

Lewerentz S said...

I like this kind of drawings, because it prove that you don't have always to paint "big things" (like a portrait or a landscape) to produce interesting work. Besides, it's a good way to improve a technique. Thank you.

Lynne the Pencil said...

You're right - I like the fact that sketching is about focus, so you can focus in on small, incidental objects as well as grand scenes. I am very keen on the 'celebration of the everyday', bringing beauty and significance to the ordinary details that make up our lives, but tend to get very little specific attention.

I like that quote Barbara. It is true that often the things which are significant to us and we choose to pass on are less important to others, whereas I'll bet there are plenty of objects of significance to them which you are unaware of and wouldn't think to set aside :-)