Workshop 5 28th July 2008

In the afternoon on the 28th July School on Paper witnessed the 5th Workshop led by Measure by Measure. For 1 ½ hours that afternoon a mix of young and old, large and small came together to try out new processes, to experiment with shape, colour and line and to work together to carry on a visual discussion. With this group of people we started, in a similar way to the morning group, by finding shapes that we liked and creating responses to it. The difference in this case was that the shapes were only to be used as a template for an unknown activity that would occur later. There were two types of shapes being created a positive shape, (cut out from the paper) and a negative shape (with a piece removed from the centre). When two piles of templates were made we moved on to a large scale collaborative drawing. For this a long roll of paper was placed on the floor and a line drawn from one end to the next. Each person then had to draw a shape, this time it needed to be something that we invented ourselves, the only condition for this task was that the drawn shape had to touch the line that ran from end to end on the paper. With this done we moved onto stage two: to draw another shape on coloured card that could be cut out and stuck onto the roll of paper. The only condition here was that the shape had to touch any drawn line.

Part of the huge template

Part of the huge template

 This activity was designed to allow everyone to work together to create a giant template that was made by making relationships between our two shapes and the shapes of others. This template was finalised by cutting the roll of paper into two parts. The dividing line was determined by everyone making decisions about which drawn line the scissors would follow when making its cuts. The essential condition was that we ended up with two large pieces of paper from a single continuous cut.
What occurred next was a dance of people working together to hang a fragile piece of paper the length of the gallery space. Communicating together, the paper was positioned, pressed and stuck into place with everyone playing an essential role. The straight edge of the paper was lined up with the corner of the room where the floor met the wall and the template began to frame the drawings of the previous workshops. With the second dance the second part of the template was positioned higher on the wall and the framing was complete; a new window onto the drawings was created. This action allowed people to freely carry out an activity based on what they liked (in this instance making shapes they liked) and then find out the consequences of those unrelated decisions when they are made to affect something else. As well as framing the drawings the template fulfilled a secondary role of covering many of the marks and lines that had been left behind. This act of covering meant that the relationships between the shapes and lines on the wall had drastically changed so that when we picked up the tracing paper templates, that we had made earlier, we had to think of a place that made sense for them to go. We stuck up these templates making new relationships with what we could see and then prepared for some messy fun.

Template dance

Template dance

We split into little groups, with paint and rollers or with print screens  and ink and all took turns in printing the shapes that we had just placed. With printing ink dripping and being forced through the mesh of the silk we created sticky, bright luscious shapes that sealed a set of activities and brought the visual discussion full circle: react, respond, process, produce; leaving the space ready for others to pick up where we left off.

Stamped frame

Stamped frame


Workshop Leaders:

Measure by Measure


Rachel Bywater

Harry Bywater

Kevin Bywater

Aviv Shahor

Lottie Shahor

Praero Shahor

Maya Shahor

Gemma Bacon

Alex Bacon

Joanne Bacon

Umaymuh Dakri

Penny Worthy

Inigo Worthy


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