Museumaker at Charnwood Museum
Weave your way through Architecture
If you thought architecture was just about buildings, think again… Discover the relationship between space and structure at Charnwood Museum with artist, Laura Ellen Bacon, and climb inside your very own woven willow masterpiece in celebration of this year’s Architecture Week (AW06)!
Artist Laura Ellen Bacon has completed her second commission at Charnwood Museum. Her willow sculpture “Pouring Forms” has been woven onto the outside of the museum in Queens Park, Loughborough.
Laura has been inspired by the range of artefacts on display at Charnwood Museum, which with her sculpture she portrays as literally pouring out of the museum. Laura has achieved colour contrast in her work by weaving sun bleached willow highlights into her willow and dogwood sculptures. However, she envisages additional highlights being created by birds that perch on top of her artworks “It’s possible the birds might mark their approval, shall we say, but it might create an interesting texture!”
The sculptures will remain on display throughout the year and will gradually change with the seasons. “The sculptures may even become home to local birds if they nest within them in the Spring”, said museum curator Susan Cooke.
The commission is part of the ongoing Museumaker project at Charnwood Museum, which has enabled members of the public inspired by Laura’s artwork to have a go themselves and weave their own sculptures.
FREE creative sessions took place in Queens Park outside Charnwood Museum in June. Inspired by nests and cocoon-like forms, the award winning artist guided participants step by step as they created a contemporary structure within the natural landscape. The event highlighted how architecture is not just about the buildings that surround us, but about alternative forms of construction and how they change the landscape, how we feel in different spaces, both personal and communal, and the enjoyment of hands-on creation.
Laura Ellen Bacon adds: “Architecture Week gave us a fantastic opportunity for the Woven Forms event , where people could experience architecture from an alternative perspective. Many of us only get to see the outcomes of artistic endeavour, but this gave some a first time opportunity to see and create something never experienced before.”
During April, Laura Ellen Bacon made a series of large woven willow and locally coppiced dogwood pieces on site here at Charnwood Museum. The commission combined her response to the existing displays exploring the history of local crafts - including coppicing and basket making - and her sense of the sheer richness of the collections, which she envisaged bursting out of the museum.
The commission arose from the pioneering Museumaker project which brings together three agencies - Arts Council England, East Midlands; the East Midlands Museums, Libraries, and Archives Council (EMMLAC) and Renaissance East Midlands to work collaboratively for the first time.
Charnwood Museum is one of just nine museums in the region selected for craft commissions in the ambitious £310,000 partnership programme which aims to develop new relationships, new work and new audiences for contemporary craft and museum collections.
Laura Ellen Bacon is well known for her large-scale woven landscape sculptures of willow and other natural materials. Fascinated by nests and cocoon-like structures, she builds forms directly on site that embrace and entwine with existing features. Often her work is to be found slumped over walls, gripping around tree trunks or wrapped in and around architectural forms. Laura has been inspired by the huge range of artefacts on display at Charnwood Museum, which with her commission will be literally pouring out of the building.
Laura said: " My intention for these designs is to promote intrigue, imagination and curiosity in the visitor and I'm delighted to be viewing these commissioned works with fresh eyes as a modern day craft artist. Some of the exhibits will start off very rough, gradually becoming more and more refined, that reflects how natural materials over time have been utilised and craft skills improved over generations."
Laura became a 'working exhibit' at Charnwood Museum as she wove her first commission into the fabric of the building in time for the national launch of Museumaker on 27 April.
Images from workshop with Laura Ellan Bacon
Laura Ellen Bacon has started work at Charnwood Museum and here are some early pictures of the work in progress...
The latest pictures from Charnwood Museum - Friday 21 April...
By the end of Friday work has begun on the second form...
... and continued over the weekend.
The completed work.
Page Last Updated: 13 May 2013