What you see is not always what you get, which was the premise for Liverpool-born Master of Fine Art graduate Lily Mellor who used paint to create an exciting visual illusion within her final degree show which both impressed and fooled the audience.
Industry, academics, students and the public came to see 24 year old Lily’s work which consisted of ‘engraved’ stone tableaus created as part of the final show for Northumbria University’s first ever cohort of Master of Fine Arts degree students. Using Rust-Oleum’s textured spray paint, Lily’s tableaus were actually created in wood and painted to fool audiences into believing the structures were sculpted from solid stone.
Lily said: “As the final piece in my master degree, I wanted the text in Impression to make a statement emphasising the absurdity of the art world. I created three wooden boards, which look like stones, each engraved with a short prose – the opinions in the voices, which the text represent, are then made permanent by being ‘set in stone’.”
The text is cut into the boards and then sprayed with Rust-Oleum Pebble Paint to make it look like engraved stone. The back of the board is left as blank wood and held up by thin timber supports. The fake-ness of their aesthetic is backed up by the fake-stone effect paint and reinforces the fake-ness of the voice in the text – but the twist is that it all looks real.
Paul Waller, brand director at Rust-Oleum said: “We’re proud to support upcoming artists who experiment with unconventional applications and Lily’s work does just that. Acting as an art and design supplier we are constantly looking to collaborate with creative individuals who push the boundaries of what’s considered traditional design.”
Rust-Oleum is a household name and the number one premium brand of aerosol paints in the USA. As a UK subsidiary of Rust-Oleum, Tor Coatings manufactures and markets the Rust-Oleum range of spray paints from its purpose-built facility in County Durham.
Lily said: “I’ve never spray painted before and it was so simple – I loved the fact that you could add extra coats and it increased the textured finish rather than ruining it.”
Lily has a history of coming out on top and achieved a first class honours in her undergraduate degree in Fine Art, has previously been gifted with theCreating Futures Studentship Prize for her creative excellence and recently found out she got a Distinction in her BxNU MFA.
Currently working in the BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art, Lily hopes that her unique artistic outlook and support of key sponsors Rust-Oleum will help in achieving her dream of working at an art festival.
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