Additive Embroidered Ice Experiments

Unusual Contemporary Embroidery in Ice

As I’ve been developing my embroidered ice work I have been experimenting with different additives that affect the way the work melts. This particular experiment was conducted by adding agar to the water before freezing it.

Agar is used a gelling agent in cookery – particularly as a vegetarian alternative to gelatin. This resulted in these works depositing a gel-like substance when melted, rather than melting away completely. This reveals the thread stitched into the ice but it means that the thread is never completely released so it retains much of the form it took when frozen.

The dissipation of colour from the ice was another interesting occurrence when melting these works. The colour had been thoroughly mixed with the water/agar mix before freezing so I was surprised that the melting water carried the colour out of the work leaving a clear gel behind.

In addition to experimenting with the composition of the water I use in these works I’ve also been exploring different camera angles. As you can see from the videos above I shot this piece head on and side on.

I was particularly pleased by the video shot side on. As the water melts there is an allusion to a landscape in the resultant images as the water creates a horizon line at the back of the image.

As I start to create more sculptural works through this process of embroidering ice I’m aware that I’ll need to exploit the work’s sculptural qualities when documenting it. The single point of view that I’ve used so far to document the work really doesn’t do the work justice.