About this project
This will be the lowest tech project ever. I carve stone.
I am a sculptor using primarily stone who has been inspired by Celtic art and design for over 30 years. I studied Celtic art through the work of other contemporary artists, in libraries, books and on line, and have made many sculptures, drawings, fiber pieces and installations inspired by and related to these historic works. My work as an artist has been documented by Networks RI in a video shown on PBS and inclusion in Networks shows; I've created public art pieces in Cumberland, RI, South Kingstown, RI, and Goderich, Ontario with Celtic themes,
It is remarkably difficult to see most of the world's historic collections of Celtic art. In North America the collections are tiny. Like the Celts themselves, the artifacts are widespread, ancient, on the fragile side and scattered among a few European collections - very rarely gathered into a large exhibition. The first time I ever saw ANY Celtic art was the 1977 "Treasures of Early Irish Art" at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, as a college student. It inspired a deep change in the trajectory of my art work.
Relying on libraries, and later on the internet, I never hoped to see in person most of the remarkable objects that had affected my work so strongly. Imagine my delight when the British Museum announced Celts: Art and Identity this past Fall. This is the first major exhibition of Celtic art in Britain in nearly 40 years and includes representative objects from the Iron Age to the present day, from Germany to Scotland to the contemporary scene. The landmark exhibition closes January 31, 2016. It is an unprecedented opportunity for research and inquiry. I'm heading towards a self-designed artists' research residency in London for a week- and I'll be sharing it on my blog and Facebook page, creating a visual as well as a written diary of my journey and studies.
All funds raised will go to help defray the $1800+ cost of this study journey to London, including become a member of the British Museum for one year, acquiring the exhibition catalog, viewing the exhibition for at least four days, and attending two lectures by leading scholars featured as part of the exhibition. I can hardly believe I will be able to see the Gundestrup Cauldron, the Holzgerlingen statue, Knox silver and large stones from Scotland, all in the same galleries! See the highlight objects for this shown and other information from the British Museum at
I'm currently at an important juncture in my career as an artist, and have taken a new studio in Warren, RI, where I teach stone carving and share my work. And, I recently retired, just a tad early, and am now working with a fixed income. I had already been planning to spend most of the winter and spring in the studio on a new body of work. The timing of the British Museum exhibition has solidified that goal, and will provide a new, invigorating wave of inspiration. Individual pieces of new art work will be shared as rewards. I am planning a gallery exhibition of art work inspired by this journey, my largest show in years- with a festive opening including traditional Celtic music. Supporters will be invited. The gallery is not decided yet, but will most likely be in Warren, RI.
Sculpture rewards will be an individual NEW work of one of a kind art, a stone sculpture or a stone rubbing. Most of the work will be featured at the gallery show, and would be shipped after she show concludes. Here would be an example of the scale of work offered to a donor at the $100 level:
Included in my rewards are hands-on stone carving experiences. There is an opportunity for you to host a stonecarving class for up to four people in your own backyard, or other suitable spot- I'll bring everything needed for an unforgettable day of carving, learning and creativity.
Please note: Because these rewards consist of my one of a kind art work (or my teaching time) and I am not a manufacturer, the rewards are not cumulative. All levels include invitations to the reception/exhibition and postcards.
There is no substitute for seeing in person the art that most inspires you. Because of the nature of much Celtic art work, its fragility and age, it is so very rarely gathered together. This is a once in a lifetime show for me. It will inspire some exciting new work.
Kickstarter will make the difference - time in the studio to work, and sharing that work with YOU, my supporters! I'm not a manufacturer; I am an artist. The work takes time; there is no new, awesome way to produce it, and it the investment here is for a piece of one of a kind sculpture, or the experience of making art. Kickstarter signifies my commitment to making significant new work once I return from my research journey, and to sharing it with supporters, friends and new audiences by mounting an exhibition.
Some of the work included in Celts: Art and Identity has already inspired me!
Please have a look at my sculpture at lauratraviscarving.com If it resonates with you, I hope you'll consider supporting my journey.
Risks and challenges
This budget includes anticipated expenses that are additional to the usual costs of operating my studio; for example, cost of stone and materials are not included. I am asking for support for a fraction of these unusual travel expenses in order to expedite the project and maximize possible time in the studio to complete the sculptures.
food @ $40/day 240
lectures, catalog 160
to/from airport 60
$200-est. shipping of rewards
Goal: $800 to help defray costs of airfare
potential stretch goal:
+$500- expenses of mounting and promoting exhibition, incl. hiring assistant and musicians
The requested funding is to partially support the expenses of a trip to London from RI leaving January 19 and returning January 26. The British Museum show, Celts: Art and Identity, closes January 31. A possible stretch goal for any additional funds would support the cost of mounting the exhibition itself- hiring an assistant to help with installation, and hiring a band to perform at the opening.
I have experience in mounting a solo exhibition, and with working with galleries as a professional artist for more than 20 years.
I have cleared my calendar for the trip and for creating a new body of work during winter and spring 2016, in order to minimize challenges to complete this project. Studio work will continue more sporadically in the summer, and resume again in the fall of 2016. Tentative dates of an exhibition would be either spring or fall 2017. This would primarily depend upon the gallery that I end up working with, but I have access (with a little fore-planning) to the gallery at my studio building for options October to April to mount a show, so have a fall back location in any case. With this proposed calendar, I hope to avoid major delays in completing the journey and the work.
Should the work take longer, or dependent upon the gallery situation, the exhibition could easily be organized for the following year.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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