Wednesday, 21 September 2022

Ironbridge Alien

I made this papier-mache alien for a group-initiative window diorama at the Bolthole, a design hub in Ironbridge Gorge, Shropshire. The window display coincides with Ironbridge's Festival of Imagination, which runs from 15th September to 2nd October 2022.

Papier-mâché Alien, 2021, artist: Wayne Chisnall

And what has an alien got to do with this particular part of the world you might ask? Well, not a lot to do with Ironbridge and it's rich industrial history, but Shropshire is something of a UFO hotspot, with a history of alleged extra terrestrial encounters. So here's my tongue-in-cheek imagining of an alien. 

Papier-mâché Alien (work-in-progress), 2021, artist: Wayne Chisnall

I started working on this little orange fella at a workshop run by my friend, the collage artist and fellow Wellington Arts Collective member, Caris Jackson. I began by making a wire frame, around which I applied layers of papier-mâché - as you can see in the little video that I made. The eyes are actually made from two antique clay or stone marbles that were found whilst mudlarking along the shore of the Thames River in London, at low tide. 

Here's a bit of bumf about this year's festival:

The Festival of Imagination 2022 – a celebration of the Ironbridge Gorge, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is set to be a feast of Art, poetry, film, workshops, performance, talks, and local history exploring the story of the Ironbridge Gorge where the raw materials of iron smelting, in the hands of historical innovators, converged to give birth to the industrial revolution.

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