This Saturday I had the pleasure of spending 12 hours drawing as part of the From Morning Till Night commission by Tate Modern of the Artist Katerina Seda. This was an amazing event and a great opportunity for those involved to meet some very talented artists and interesting people. I arrived at the Tate Modern at 6am and was greeted with a smile by some tired looking staff. All artists were given their position number, badge, translation book, map and any materials they had requested. At 6:30 I placed myself on the far corner of the Tate by the millennium bridge and got to work on my image. I really enjoy drawing outside and the early start (although a bit of a shock to my system) presented me with a beautiful and peaceful environment to work in. As the morning progressed Czech Republic Villagers started to walk past, offering a smile and comments on the site I was drawing whilst carrying out the action or activity Seda had provided for them.
So what was the project about - Katerina Seda invited 80 residents of all ages from Bedrichovice, a small village in The Czech Republic, to perform a one-day action in London. In the village the inhabitants would normally leave the village at sunrise to go work, carry out chores and go to school - only returning home at sunset. This limits social interaction with their neighbours, with many villagers only meeting when they bump into each other accidently. Seda wanted to bring the villagers to London and recreate the village in an unfamiliar context. The villagers were given tasks to perform such as building a den out of cardboard boxes, do washing, playing badminton, riding a London Barclay cycle, taking photos, celebrating a birthday and so forth. These actions and activities provided the opportunity for the villagers to integrate in a new way, within the imaginary border around Tate Modern to St Paul Cathedral.
In addition to the villagers 80 UK based artists were invited to assist Seda in representing these imaginary borders. Each artist was sent a picture from the village and provided with a spot positioned at the outskirts of the imaginary village to draw or paint the picture. The general idea, was that the artists would slowly create pictorial images of the village to the passing London visitors whilst the Czech Villagers engaged in social activities within the imaginary village borders.
These are some of my pictures of events of the day and the extensive range of art work produced as part of the commission.
The start of my drawing at 6:30am....
In Position 51 was Max Dixon, Who created this stunning Chalk Pastel image
These exquisite acrylic paintings were created by Layla Al-Marzooqi, describing some of the foliage and the side view of the factory.
More foliage being painted along the Southbank
These two boys were amazing throughout the day. They constantly had smiles upon thier faces and were checking on the artists to make sure we were all ok. It was great to observe them enjoying building their den and chatting with them about their home.
Me and my coffee cups at Position 50
My finished drawing, completed using water soluble crayons.
After completing my picture I tried to draw it from memory. I did cheat a little referring to the photo for the initial outline, but I promise I did not look at it once when adding detail and shading. If you look at the foreground you will notice my lack of imagination with the foliage which all seems to be leaning in the same direction. The image above has a bit more movement to it.
The images below show a snapshot of the village and the incredible work created by some very talented artists. I hope I have got all the names correct and apologies if there are any spelling mistakes.
Ade Awofadeju detailed pen sketch
Isabell Markus expressive watercolour
Debbie Atkinson breathtaking pen and ink
Inez Schrader - if you look closely you will see that Inez got the villagers who passed her by to sign her picture, actually giving them ownership and putting them in the picture.
I did not get the names of the artists that created the two images above
Katerina Seda and her Intepreter address the villagers and artists at the evening celebration
If you would like to find out more about this project have a look at the following link http://www.tate.org.uk/modern/eventseducation/musicperform/24135.htm or read about events of the Tate Blog http://blog.tate.org.uk/?s=katerina+seda