MA Graphic Arts
Extended practice in Graphic Arts
Student´s name: Iria Prol
Tutor: Robert Kettell
I started this module after a frustraded attemp of spending my summer in Berlin and developing my project there. It was a confusing moment, and I realised that the fact that I have been living indifferent cities and adapting to the different environments had constituted an important part of my life. I decided to make this my subject matter. During the Analising Practice in the Graphic Arts module, within the theme ‘All about myself’ I already utilised the different places I visited and the people I met there as a subject, so I decided to give a continuity to it.
My overall aim for this projectat the beginning of the module was to reflect the feelings and the memories that I have from these different places. I usually collect found elements and photographs from each place,and this idea of collecting, as well as the travelling sketchbook inspired me to create a series of books about each of the cities that had influenced me in a meaningful way. I initially imagined those books as collagepieces, combinations of text and ephemeral image, trying to reflect the essence of a particular place and time. The two initial ideas I had to begin with were to produce two books. The first of them would be based on the city of Valencia in Spain, where I lived and studied for three years. My idea was to produce this book using interviews to my closest friends as a starting point. My trip toValencia in October allowed me to interview them and to be influenced by the atmosphere of the city. I tried to create a book based on a collage style at first, combining the text from the interviews and images of portraits of the people interviewed. I also tried to include images of found patterns and ornament from the historic bulidings of the city.
At the same time, I was trying to developanother book based on Galicia, the region in the North-West of Spain where I spent the most time of my life and my earlier years.
The starting point I had for this book, was a collection of old photographies that I borrowed from my grandmother´s memory trunk. I was fascinated by the look of those photographs, the way everybody seemed so elegant, so neat, and also the old feel ,color and texturethat this old pieces of photographic paper had.
I considered that those photographs were a very good raw material to use to produce collages, and I started to combine and modify them.I produced screen printed images on paper and textiles.My aim here was to produce collages or illustrations using the borrowed images from my family’s memory and them put them together in a book that would be theresult of all my image-making. I also considered the idea of including text, interviewing members of my family about their memories related to this photographs and even creating patterns based on the information they would give me.
During last summer, I produced a set of portrait photographs of some members of my family in a style that recalls the old photographs that I talked about earlier. Mytutors suggested that I should emphasize this aspect of my practice, so during the christmas period I put all my effort on producing and improving this photographic side.
So far I have done four photo shoots in total, All of them sharing the same Galician rural background. Doing this made me realise a new aim for my work. I want to show the world the particular identity of the Galician people, widelyunknown but indeed special and idiosyncratic.
I spent the most of my life in this rural regions in Galicia but it is only now that I can appreciate that it is an example of cultural richeness as a minority culture with particular features and traditions.
CHALLENGES AND OPPORTUNITIES 500 WORDS
As the Valencia book evolved, I tried to experiment with the composition and grid and to...