Tuesday, 18 January 2011

Continuous Line.

I do not wish to define the meaning of a tea cup because the meaning is fluid.The Western working class ritual of drinking tea is a valuable continuous line of communication looked upon in a casual manner, but relied upon immensely.  In Eastern cultures the value and history of tea, the ritual surrounding it and the objects surrounding the ritual dominates the experience.  I want to focus on the value of the experience of shared time, conversation and real face to face communication.  Without rules or limitations, the cup of tea in my culture is intimate.  Although there are the influences of other cultures and classes, we take our tea according to personal preference from the location through to the cup and the company.  From one porcelain cup to the next, I had thought of my string drawing out the pattern of a telephone along the literal line of communication.  The piece breaks the standardised perceived meanings of the teacups as objects by altering their functionality, but the understanding of the image of a telephone representing communication contradicts the attempted step away from the standardised.  Distance and area dictates the altered methods of communication between me and my friend who originally bought me the teacup, and so the length of the piece of string between the two cups will comment on the limitations of space and the standardised.  I think that the element of contradiction works to express the conclusions that I have come to through the exploration of my object in implying superiority of a cup of tea as a tool for communication.

I have submitted the piece as part of the 'A4' exhibition at Leeds College of Art, and the string measures the  length of the area of the standard A4 that it fills.

I realise that my exploration of the object has become specifically focused upon my personal experience of it, and the expression of my ideas through the visual language that I am choosing to use is just as personal.  By which I mean to say that the invalidity of my research based around 'my' tea cup and object which other people may identify as a cappuccino cup is irrelevant and misunderstood.  The misunderstanding is as a result of my expression of the meaning of 'my' tea cup and not of the tea cup as an object in general.  When I was questioned about weather or not I knew that my cup was actually a cappuccino cup during a group tutorial, I realised that the standardised understanding of things runs deeper than I had originally expected.  The receipt of any works that I create using 'my' tea cup, will be pre-criticized by the power of inbuilt understandings that do not wish to be questioned.  If I pour tea into an empty fish bowl and drink from it...it is a tea cup.  Standardised definitions that we are taught do not always correlate with the reality of functionality and the relationship an individual has with an object, and nor should they.

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