Saturday, December 15, 2012

Bronze! (to be cleaned)

The wax forms in the silica shell are melted out via furnace. The shells are then reheated and buried for a bronze pour. This is them shortly after the pour.
 After the bronze cools the white silica shell is broken off to reveal the piece.

transient war

it whispers to me at night: there is no guarantee of peace, of happiness.
and your ecstatic moments float upon mediocrity and suffering, like glimmering ice in dark polar seas
and upon that place deep below where your pulse is everything. a current that will be disturbed.

this is a life ferocious:
not always in fighting, tearing, consuming, but simply
in being. each heart beat a call outwards, responding to the dare of silence.

Saturday, December 8, 2012

visual effects & video work

Visual Effects Reel from Marilee Spencer on Vimeo.

-Flash Animation

-Modeled 3d character in Maya

Introduction to Special Spirit Inc. from Marilee Spencer on Vimeo. This video was shot and edited in a brief weekend for the organization's Golf Fundraiser. Although low video quality and sound resulted, I really enjoyed putting it together and look forward to potentially making another longer documentary.

Special Spirits from Marilee Spencer on Vimeo.

Britain Montage from Marilee Spencer on Vimeo. Shots from my trip to the UK.

bronze casting underway

Here are some photos from my bronze casting class. We finally got to pour on Monday into cope&drag petrobond molds. Our next pour will be for the silica sand molds, which we melted the wax forms out of yesterday. More to come..
You can see more photos at CSUN's sculpture page on Faceboook.

Preparation of a sand mold; coyote jawbone and an old key.
Working with petrobond sand
[This awesome night pour photo is by Farnaz Sabet]
Here is the furnace and sand molds after our Monday pour.

Our sculpture room is a garage converted to a workshop. It's unremarkable but feels like a home more than any other classroom of mine. I also have to express how much I've truly enjoyed being part of this amazing community of sculpture students and professors.
Here are wax forms, now being dipped in silica sand. The wax will be melted out to create the negative space for a bronze pour.

This class has been my most laborous this semester, but in the best way. I find it so easy and really enjoyable to be able to do hands-on art, and I'm beginning to realize how fundamental, or how therapeutic it is for me to be able to work with various processes. From my travels I look back at awe of what ancient civilizations had accomplished with metalworking, and with so much precision and skill. I feel like something our society has lost (or continues to lose) is the motivation, time and resources for everyday people to develop virtuosity with a certain hobby or artistic skill set.. & I feel I need to be a part of a renaissance that happens outside of pedestrian hegemony.

drive home

Drive Home from Marilee Spencer on Vimeo.

I enjoy static moments on the radio
the buzzing black and white consuming each other
or where channels overlap
as cacophonies of split consciousness
And it never feels wrong. Because
sound is earthly,
music is human.
And in the place not too far away, and to the very end,
it’s all silent.

I made this video a year ago. And I didn't like it.  I still have qualms about it, but watching it again I realize how letting go of a typical form of video expression and simply regurgitating what came to mind captured so much of me at that moment. Maybe it's something no one else can understand; when it was screened in class for viewing, I sat there feeling like I was presenting something not meant to be presented. It was of a crude technique. It was long, seemingly senseless and repetitive. It felt too personal. It had my writing in it (though I mildly impersonalized it with computer type). Out came this version of me I didn't fully understand.

So I feel now I have to look back and credit it, especially since the general feeling it gives me still rings true.
This was a reflection of the sort of 'mindless knowingness' that takes over me when I commute. By putting a camera at the back of my car, I captured one of the countless drives I perform to and from school. Notably at my favorite time of day. The audio in this video is some unique channel of radio I found while I was driving.
And this is something I've always loved [possibly stemming from the numerous family road trips I went on as a child]: Something so elementary as listening to music in a car creates moments for me that are perfect. Moments where the motion of the outside world are commented on by audio compositions; inside a vehicle, it's like the way passing streetlights match with a pulsing buildup, the way a person sits down at a bus stop with some breathing sigh of melody, the way sequential signs on buildings or lines on pavement drum in the eye.

With the inside sound and outside visuals, I begin to exist in a centering middle space where I welcome audiovisual unpredictability in order to experience some new progression of thought. This sort of turning inwards while still being highly influenced by the 'external' is both a coping with mediocrity and avenue to higher presence.