1.1.2017

Images from the photo shoot and from Contemporary Craft in Pittsburgh, with details about the Transformations 10 exhibition

The folks at Contemporary Craft shared these images this week:

I got these and my heart swelled – I’m so proud of Tegan and her son Calder, and of everyone for coming out on the 7th of July to make these images with me. There are so many of them, which I’ve shared with all the participants, but here’s the big group one:

1.1.2017

and one of the pairings images I sent to Contemporary Craft

1.1.2017

Contemporary Craft sent out their invitations this week for the free and public opening of the Transformations 10 exhibition on Friday the 14th of September, (at that link you can see the Tegan + Calder pairing too) as well as for the public artist talks that happen the next afternoon with some of the exhibiting artists. I told Pittsburgh folks at SNAG months ago that I would be going to this event, and I am making good on that promise. I will see this work installed before I leave the USA, and I hope that if you’re in the Pittsburgh area that you’ll come along and share the experience with me.

Next week I will send out all of the barter jewels to my container donors for this project, so stay tuned to see what they look like – and if you sent me something, your trade jewel will be in the mail next week!

 

(And if you want to know what I’m on about, there’s the post about donations, the post about the photo shoot and all of the Monday-Gun Day posts to learn more about this project.)

Monday – Gun day

Even I thought we were done with gun-days…

1.1.2017

The last post was all about the impending photo shoot of the above-titled work, which took place without a hitch just over two weeks ago. A huge ovation and a raucous Hip-Hip-Hooray! for my 56 intrepid volunteers, who modeled the 73 pieces that I had made in the previous month like absolute professionals. We worked basically by city, so we managed to get the works arrayed across our models.

I then took all the wearable works back into the studio to photograph them with the 73 containers from which they had come. After that I packed up the whole of 1.1.2017 and sent it to Contemporary Craft in Pittsburgh, and emailed a batch of the finished photos of the piece by the deadline, as per our contract. Then I reclaimed my weekends!

Contemporary Craft are now assembling the works of the 26 artists juried into Transformation 10: Contemporary Works in Found Materials in preparation for opening the exhibition and  awarding the Elizabeth R. Raphael Founder’s Prize on the 14th of September.

Now I’m working towards other deadlines. Have I mentioned that I’ll be in an exhibition With Other Eyes starting at the Ruthin Craft Centre in Wales on the 29th of September? I’m currently waiting on my first ever order of enamel decals (don’t worry, you’ll hear about it) while slowly slicing some 2mm shipping container steel.

So that’s why I regretfully don’t have any images to share of the work, or the shoot, just yet. But if you seek them out on Facebook, a few of my volunteers posted their images and thoughts. And yes, I’m still doing the editing on the pictures that I didn’t send (we shot about 680 images on the Saturday in Fremont, and I took about that many again in the studio), so I will be able to share images of everyone involved, and the whole work, very soon.

In the mean time, there was some positive gun news on The Guardian recently-there’s been more sales slumps for one of my favourite brands << you’ll be sure to shovel on the sarcasm for those last 2 words, won’t you? >>

Photo Shoot this Saturday!

I suspect it’s too late to apologise for sounding like a broken record…

Thank you to the big flock of people who have signed up already, and sorry to everyone for still harping on about this, but we’re really, really close to making our volunteer target for Saturday’s photo shoot. If you have been thinking about signing up but just haven’t got around to it yet, I’d really appreciate you (and your mates!) getting on board today.

Sign up here

This will be the only opportunity to see these neckpieces in Seattle, as the whole work (both the pendants and containers from which they were cut – 146 pieces all told) will go on display in the exhibition Transformations 10 at Contemporary Craft in Pittsburgh in September. And as most of y’all know, not long after that I move back to Australia so I won’t be in the USA to organize a Seattle venue.

And to keep us all sane despite the idea behind the pieces we’re photographing, we are working hard behind the scenes to make this an enjoyable experience for everyone!

For the last time – photo shoot details at-a-glance:

– 7/7/18, 8am – 12pm
– Meet at the parking lot under the Fremont Bridge (not next to the Troll – the one that opens)
– 8am-9am sign in
– 9am-12pm all 73 people in 73 different gun-shaped pendants stand together for the shoot (if we finish early we all go home early)
– You wear something comfortable with dark top-half and no logos, I loan you a pendant to wear for the morning
– Drinks and snacks provided
– Kids, families welcome – but no pets please.

Monday – Gun Day

Jewellery is meant to be worn. Please come wear these pieces for a few hours

1.1.2017

55 places. 62 incidents. 66 guns. 73 people

It’s take one month of drawing, drilling, sawing and slicing to make a portrait of each of the 66 guns used in fatal incidents on January 1st, 2017. These gun outlines are made in metal, plastic, fabric and paper, from containers sourced from the 55 places in which these acts of violence occurred.

Now we are seeking 73 people to wear the outlines, small and large, while we take an image to help tell the story.

Please come and stand in for the people we lost to these guns on that day.

Register here

More info here

VOLUNTEERS NEEDED!

Seattle – come help me out on 7/7/18 for a few hours. It will be fun, promise 😉

Sign up here


A huge thanks to everyone who has already signed up for the photo shoot on the 7/7/18. I’m back to tell those of you who haven’t that I need a lot more volunteers to help create a truly arresting image. I’ve made a poster (above, link) with all the details that I’d love for you to print and display in your shared studio, office or other place where cool people hang out! (FYI – I’ve already papered Equinox and Pratt Studios, and a big thanks to the others who have obliged me by posting it in their shared studios.)

AND in exciting news – I’ve managed to secure the services of local film-director Miri Stone, who thankfully has a lot more experience at this than me! She’s going to keep us all on task and motivated, and help us make the best image possible.

As far as volunteers go, I have just over a quarter of the sign-ups that I’m seeking. If you’ve been meaning to sign up please do so here, I’d really appreciate it, and if you’re going to be out of town you can do me a huge favor by forwarding on this email to someone who has yet to receive it.

And to those of you curious about progress on the artwork – my deadline for receiving containers was last week, and I’m currently at 49 pieces totally completed for the shoot, with 4 more awaiting cleanup on bench this morning. The last of the containers are still coming in too, so I’m on schedule to finish by the end of this week. Phew 😉

Photo shoot details at-a-glance:
– 7/7/18
– Meet at the parking lot under the Fremont Bridge (not near the Troll – the one that opens 😉 )
– 8am-9am sign in
– 9am-12pm all 73 people in 73 different gun-shaped pendants stand together for the shoot (if we finish early we all go home early!)
– You wear something comfortable with dark top-half and no logos, I loan you a pendant to wear for the morning
– Drinks and snacks provided

This is going to be a fun and once in a lifetime experience, so please come join us!

Some more about the project here and especially the shoot here

Poster for print: VOLUNTEERS NEEDED

I Want YOU!

To come help me photograph my new artwork that charts one day of gun violence in the USA.

shadow portraits of guns made from sourced objects, for the project 01/01/17 by Melissa Cameron

Hello dear Seattle friends and colleagues,

Many of you have already had an email from me seeking containers to realize an upcoming artwork. I’ve been hitting the studio hard, and now it’s time to reveal the work and make a beautiful photograph of the finished piece!

I’m looking for a big number of volunteers – 73 to be exact – to be the talent in group photo, with everyone wearing one work. No experience necessary! All you have to do is come to the location, sign a release form and be given a pendant on a chain to wear. Then you’ll stand alongside 72 other pendant-wearers, while I take an epic group photo.

The shoot will take place from 8am – 12pm on Saturday July 7th, in Fremont. We will meet in the parking lot under the Fremont Bridge – (obvs on the north side – and please don’t plan to park there!) The first hour will be sign-in and jewelry put-on, and then down to business. We will be under cover and have coolers of water and snacks on hand. There will be a few simple stage directions – stand there, look here, straighten the jewel, that kind of thing.

Please use the sign up form here to register your interest so we can get an idea of numbers.

Do invite your friends and family, and children are of course welcome (just remember to sign up each person individually), and feel free to pass this email along to anyone who might be interested. But please no pets.

Fashion tip – smart casual, logo-free with a darker shade single-color on the top-half. A plain dark top and jeans works great, as does anything that you’ll be comfortable in for a few hours.

Questions? Please email me blog@melissacameron.net and I’ll get you in touch with the lovely Natascha, my photo shoot admin hero.

The vibe is going to be fun – somewhere between flash-mob and principal photography shoot – so please come along, enjoy the camaraderie and help me make a really memorable image of my biggest artwork to date!

Thank you all,

Melissa

Can You Help – Update

Still seeking containers from specific places in the USA – we’re getting there!

*** UPDATED June 8th*** – Thank you everyone who has participated – the list is much smaller!

I have not yet been promised an object for my project from the places listed below. Please let me know (blog@melissacameron.net) if you can send me a container from one of these towns, and I will take it off the list.

Full details here.

Address for shipping your container:
Melissa Cameron
2212 Queen Anne Ave. N. #412
Seattle WA 98109

State City Or County #
Alabama Athens
Alabama Birmingham
Georgia Allenhurst
Georgia Moultrie
Illinois Villa Park
Illinois Rockford
Illinois Chicago 3
Louisiana Anacoco 3
Mississippi Meridian
North Carolina Asheboro 2
South Carolina North Charleston
South Dakota Rapid City
Tennessee Nolensville
Texas Edcouch

And please, no glass, ceramic, enameled metal or stainless steel. Use a magnet to test your steel – if it sticks, I’ll take it!

Monday – Gun Day

Concluding my research into guns that killed in the USA on January 1st, 2017

An enormous big THANK YOU to everyone who has got in touch from locations all over the USA in repose to my call for containers to help this research project take concrete form. I have almost half the objects I am seeking, with 41% of the places claimed. If you are in, or know people nearby, the following as-yet unclaimed places (a number next to the place indicates I need that more than one objects from that place), I will send you a newly made limited edition piece of jewellery in exchange for your item. Shoot me an email (with a pic of the object if you can) and then send the container here:

Melissa Cameron
2212 Queen Anne Ave. N. #412
Seattle WA 98109

See the original post for more details, and I need the objects ASAP as my deadline is looming…!

List of places still to be claimed for the container-jewel swap

/// Now, back to the last 10 guns

Twenty-five year old Jeffrey Pope was shot in Meridian, Miss. before 5am on New Years Day 2017. After an investigation Aundre Rashaun Tubbs handed himself into police on February 27 after a warrant was made for his arrest earlier that day.

Tubbs was later arrested in connection with a later fatal shooting in Meridian,  at which time it was reported that for his January 1st crime:

Meridian City Court Judge Robbie Jones ruled at Tubbs’ initial hearing on March 2 that Tubbs couldn’t be held on bond until the next available grand jury and had to be released due to lack of evidence.

The dismissal, made during an initial hearing for Tubbs, does not rule whether Tubbs is guilty or not guilty. It determines if it is likely he committed the crime.

It is unknown if Tubbs is still a suspect in the ongoing police investigation into Pope’s death. What that same article could shed light on was the weapon:

The city’s evidence at the preliminary hearing consisted of conflicting statements on Tubbs’ wardrobe and testimony from Tubbs’ associates who said Tubbs carried a 40-caliber pistol. Forty-caliber shell casings were found near Pope’s body the night of the murder.

Back in February I nominated a .40 semi-automatic pistol for my list, the Smith & Wesson Military & Police. It happens to by the weapon I’ve used as Default Pistol 2, and owing to its origin (and title – though remember that S&W like to recycle familiar titles to help out with marketing ) it crops up for officer fired weapons too. We add an extra one now to make an unbroken run of three.

Default Pistol 2 – S&W M&P

Christina Anderson (30) was shot in Birmingham, Alabama, on January 1st at close to 10pm. Police went to the scene to find evidence of a shooting but no victim, as she had been taken it to a local emergency room by way of the car of a Good Samaritan.  She was transferred from Princeton Baptist Medical Center to UAB Hospital, where she died on the afternoon of the 2nd from her injuries, having not regained consciousness.

The mother of one had been walking down the street with a friend when a group approached and there was a discussion/altercation. Her friend then told her to run. She received a bullet while fleeing. Police investigating think that her killer may have been known to her.

No evidence of gun reported. DP 1

Ruger SR1911 – Default Pistol 1

In Cypress, Texas, we have an unnamed homeowner killing an unnamed guest at a 200 person invitation-only New Years celebration. The killer, a 48 year-old male said that his son was hosting the party.

 The homeowner claims it took a turn when a drunk guest refused to leave.

According to that homeowner, the guest began fighting with him, and he had no other choice but shoot.

The wounded guest was pronounced dead on scene.

It was also reported that the homeowner shot him to prevent further disruption.

The neighborhood in Cypress is Dry Creek Airport – a gated community with private airport, with many of the neighboring properties having hangers on their land. A witness said the the party was taking place in the hanger of the property.

My multiple searches did not reveal any further evidence of the weapon, or even the names of the killer or his victim. It is reported that the killer has been cooperative, and that a grand jury will decide if the man faces charges.

Needless to say, I’m incredulous at all of this. DP2

Default Pistol 2 – S&W M&P

Another event in which the killer and victim are not named, happened outside of The Crazy Leprechaun in Philadelphia, PA at about 2:15 am on New Years Day. A thirty-one year old security guard was attacked by a thirty-two year old man when the guard refused entry into the closed bar in order to use the bathroom. The man and his friends attacked with a Club steering security lock and the guard also received a knife wound, and so shot his weapon twice, hitting the man once in his back. He was taken to hospital but later died. The last reports imply that charges were unlikely as the guard acted in self-defense. No weapon named. DP 1

Ruger SR1911 – Default Pistol 1

[We reach the point now where we diverge from the Gun Violence Archive listing again, as this is where the judge from this post is currently placed in the GVA’s list. As it turns out, though, there’s a replacement, which seemingly got added to the list at position 28. Owing to other complicated shenanigans on my initial spreadsheet, you might be surprised to find that I did have this city in the ‘places’ list (above), and I was instead missing Richmond, Virginia. I hadn’t compensated for the Judge appearing twice, and I had incorrectly recorded our Richmond victim (only in the spreadsheet, he’s recorded correctly here) which, lucky for me, meant that I just had to ask one of my Virginian volunteers to switch their allegiances by a few miles. Phew.]

Kristen Zambo for RRstar.com on the 5th of may, 2018, writes:

A Rockford man acquitted of murder in a fatal New Year’s Day 2017 shooting was sentenced on Friday to 10 years behind bars — the maximum sentence — for having a gun the morning four men were shot at a Rockford hotel.

Sean D. Burks, 32, was accused of killing Joshua Jamerson during a party at Cliffbreakers Riverside Hotel & Conference Center, 700 W. Riverside Blvd. Jamerson, 34, of Rockford, and three other men were shot. Burks was charged with 39 counts of various offenses including first-degree murder, aggravated discharge, aggravated battery and unlawful possession of a weapon by a felon. He was convicted of the unlawful possession of a weapon by a felon charge.

On the 9th of March this year Burks was cleared on the murder charges. It is still unclear who shot Jamerson, who died from a gunshot wound to the back that penetrated his spine. Police were called when a gunfight broke out in a hallway of Cliffbreakers. No specific weapons were mentioned in any of the reports I saw. DP 2

Default Pistol 2 – S&W M&P

Brothers Tony Lashuan McRae (31) and Quanta Guan McRae (29) of Ashboro, NC, were killed around 2am on New Years Day when an argument between themselves and suspects Curtis E. Little (25) and Rodney Jontae Patterson (27) escalated. Both suspects were eventually arrested. The men are survived by their children – Tony has six, and Quanta, three.

The last mention of the suspects is in an article about Randolph County’s new district attorney, and his hopes to clear a bunch of cases that are holding many murder suspects in jail. Little and Patterson are in a queue of 13 that begins with crimes that took place in 2007.

Little was reported arrested by East Orange police in New Jersey on the 12th of January, while Patterson turned himself in soon after his warrant was issued. The police were reported as saying that the incident occurred after an “altercation in the parking during a New Year’s Eve celebration in a strip shopping center on Shana Lane.” No weapons were mentioned. DP 1+2, one for each of Little and Patterson.

Ruger SR1911 – Default Pistol 1
Default Pistol 2 – S&W M&P

Brandon Moles (22), was shot in Knoxville, Tennessee just before 10:00pm on New Years Day, outside an apartment building. Taken to UT Medical Center for treatment of his injuries, he later died. The reports say he was shot in a dispute over illicit drugs, but did not name any suspects, and further internet searches revealed few other details about Moles. DP1

Ruger SR1911 – Default Pistol 1

Adrian Anguiano (20) was shot in the neck outside an apartment complex in Redmond, Washington, around 2am on New Years Day 2017.

Redmond firefighters responded to a fire alarm set off inside a large recreation room at the complex at 16800 N.E. 39th Court around 2 a.m. Sunday, police said. They didn’t find a fire but determined the alarm was likely set off by people smoking indoors.

While on scene, firefighters heard what sounded like a gunshot and called for police backup and medical assistance. Arriving officers found Anguiano dead from a gunshot wound just outside the recreation building, where a party had been under way.

As of March 30th, police were still looking for his killer and were hoping to speak with some of his over 200 fellow-party-goers from that night.

Default Pistol 2 – S&W M&P

Trevis Stephens (33) was shot inside bar by man who had just been kicked out. The alleged shooter, John Word (35) banged on the door in an attempt to reenter the bar. He eventually got a gun and fired two shots into the bar, hitting Stephens as he was attempting to hide. Stephens later died in hospital.

Initially another man wanted for questioning turned himself in and was released, no longer considered a person of interest. A warrant was later issued for Word, after police released security-camera image of him, and hours after they arrested a woman with complicity to murder. He then turned himself in. Several articles later revealed that he has a long criminal history, and had been let out of his last term early.

Clairese Murray (35) was the woman charged, for allegedly acting as a getaway driver. There were no details of the gun in any of the reports I read. DP 1

Ruger SR1911 – Default Pistol 1

On New Year’s Day, police found 41-year-old Mark Fields with a gunshot wound to the neck around 3 a.m. on a porch on the 1900 block of West Williard Street in Tioga. He was pronounced dead at the scene at 3:03 a.m. Police later arrested and charged 36-year-old Cauras Garland, of the 5300 block of North Camac Street.

Once again, there is a real paucity of information on this incident. The above was the extent of the mention in an article about eight shootings in early January in The Inquirer, and the only article that I, or the Gun Violence Archive before me, could find. Thanks to a different Mark Fields being a fortune 500 player, it’s hard to get any more intelligence down that line of googling.  Cauras Garland is a unique enough name hereabouts, but the only other thing that comes up aside from Facebook is his telephone number.

On a lack of evidence, I close my investigations with one final DP2.

Default Pistol 2 – S&W M&P

 

The investigation is over. Begin the making.

Monday – Gun Day

Incidents 52 + 53 – from the Gun Violence Archive, Jan 1, 2017

John McLaughlin, 42, was killed by two police officers in Springfield Township, Cincinnati, Ohio, after calling the police around 8:15pm on Monday the 1st of January, 2017. His call came while he was engaged in a domestic dispute with his wife, and after a friend of his wife had also made a call. McLaughlin had been in the process of throwing out his wife’s belongings when the police approached. After a 20 minute negotiation with him, which began outside, the officers, Nick Hornback, 23, and Brandon Musgrove, 31, (who were immediately placed on administrative leave after the shooting – that their superiors later indicated was justified – more background on the officers histories here), were still there as a visibly distraught McLaughlin sat down, put his head in his hands, and then produced a concealed hand gun. The officers asked him to put it down, and when he pointed it in the direction of the officers they fired seven times, with the victim receiving multiple hits.

Cincinatti Police Officers carry a Smith & Wesson 9mm Military and Police pistol, and those with higher ranking can carry, in addition to the regular M&P 9, a M&P compact. As regular officers the drawings are of two M&P 9mm weapons, which also happens to be Default Pistol 2.

Default Pistol 2 – S&W M&P
Default Pistol 2 – S&W M&P

Teresa Shields, 26, was killed while being driven in a white Audi by Stevie Waldon, after they left a New Year’s Eve party at 513 Lounge in Middletown Ohio. Waldon drove immediately to a hospital where Shields died and and he was treated for his wounds. Thirteen 0.223 Winchester rounds were found by police in the roadway at the crime scene. The police are still investigating – in May they released information with a call for witnesses, say that they had the suspect’s vehicle and were processing it for DNA evidence. They suspect that Shields’s boyfriend and ‘love of her life’ Waldon, is holding out on them. The last mention I saw of him indicated he was in jail awaiting a sentence for charges of drug trafficking.

The 0.223 Winchester is a rifle round (originally made by Remington, more via Wikipedia) but doesn’t readily telegraph the weapon that fired it – police indicated that it was a high-powered rifle, an “AR-type” . One of the weapons that does fire it is the old favourite, AR-15. As we learned earlier in this series, the AR-15 variant I drew for another work turns out to be a carbine rather than a full rifle, so this time I’ve chosen to draw a Springfield Armory AR-15 rifle.

Springfield Armory AR-15 Rifle

Monday – Gun Day

More events from the 1st of Jan, 2017, from the Gun Violence Archive

No time for a deep dive today, so just a quick pair of guns:

Eighteen year old Kiara Tatum was killed when a man and a boy fired into a crowd standing outside in Memphis, TN, at about 8pm, from their vehicle. One report said that:

According to Memphis Police Department, 22-year-old Devante Robinson is accused of being one of two people inside a white car that fired shots at a crowd of people on Danville Circle. Kiara Tatum, 18, was killed in the shooting.

The other suspect was identified Tuesday as 17-year-old Jaylen Clayton.

Robinson is charged with first-degree murder, five counts of attempted first-degree murder, and using a gun during a felony.

An earlier report said that:

Clayton is charged with first-degree murder, five counts of attempted first-degree murder, and using a firearm during a felony.

Robinson was out on bond for reckless endangerment at the time, having been in another vehicle from which shots were fired (at children playing outside,) less than a week earlier. And as for Clayton, one of the latest articles I found said that the 17 year old was to be tried as an adult.

Between everything I read, a lot of weapons and ammunition were mentioned, but none named. Amazingly with two guns fired, and reportedly up to five other victims, Tatum was the only one found dead from a gunshot wound.  We’re up to DP 2 yet again, but I’ll add DP1 too, since the exact killer will probably go unidentified.

Default Pistol 2 – S&W M&P
Ruger SR1911 – Default Pistol 1