Isolated Moments – Outside In

The next in our Isolated Moments series, aiming to keep spirits buoyed and creativity alive during COVID-19 global social isolating and quarantining measures, comes from Fermynwoods Associate Artist Virginie Litzler and her assistants Augusta and Josefine, currently in lockdown in Belgium.

In 2016, I was leading a workshop with Rockingham Primary School in Corby, about observing our surroundings through various ways. A big part of it was supposed to happen in the woods nearby, however with strong rain joining us mid-morning a plan B had to be put in place very quickly for some forty students. As we couldn’t go outdoors we brought the outside in. This workshop draws on that activity to solve a similar problem.

Outside In Windows
  • First, try to collect as many different colours of paper that you can find. Post-It notes are great but you could use any type of paper with some blue tack. You could even make your own by colouring some basic white printer paper.
  • Now go around your home and select a window which offers a view point – a view that you enjoy or one that you rarely look at.
  • Spend some time looking out (you might have already done quite a bit of that during lockdown). What does the view offer? Colours, forms, shadows?
  • Choose a detail from the view that caught your attention, follow the outline and try to reproduce it on your window by sticking your coloured paper directly on the window pane.
  • Try to resemble the forms outside by changing the shape of your paper by turning, folding layering and accumulating. Start by playing with your full size paper and only use scissors at a later stage.
  • From there you can expand towards the surrounding detail or choose to use your paper for a bigger surface such as sky, buildings, trees …
  • I recommend you draw your attention to the things you haven’t noticed before and let the window fill up with the outdoor scenery.
  • Take pictures of the result from different angles and at different times of the day.

See how your new image changes with you passing by. Perhaps insects will be attracted to the new colours. Does the passing light of the day make it move or glow? You might even get some nice feedback from your neighbours – after my experiment I received a text message from our concierge saying that professional window cleaners will come on Sunday!


Outside In

For some more inspiration try watching these:

My Uncle, Jacques Tati, 1958

One Week, Buster Keaton, 1920

Virginie Litzler

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