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Etch a sketch project

etch-a-sketchOne of my HE6 students is a keen ideas person who finds thinking through making very enjoyable and is always experimenting with new and unusual materials and processes. She is currently ‘toying’ (pun intended) with making work using the excellent etch a sketch as a medium and has asked me to forward this message from her to see if she can make a collaborative preliminary work that will then be mediated through a secondary process to create one very complex drawing. Have a read of the text below to see if you would like to contribute or can help her with her etch a sketch trawl.
For my level 3 Major Project/Contextual Studies work I started exploring the idea of the palimpsest which has morphed into the study of virtual and digital media juxtaposed with lo-fi and tangible objects.
The perennial childhood favourite the Etch a Sketch is a perfect example of a palimpsest that is also a lo-fi tangible object. Once an image is made and erased there is still a ghostly trace left.
I am using the Etch a Sketch in two pieces of work for my Major Project and it would be great if the OCA community could help me – be part of the finished work – a great collaboration!
Firstly, I am scratching into an aluminium plate overlaid drawings that have been made and subsequently erased on an Etch a Sketch. If you have one would you send me an image of your drawing (not too complex please as I have to copy it) of anything you like? Trust me I’ve had all sorts submitted by family and friends! This can be photographed and emailed to me on sarah413329@oca.ac.uk
Secondly, I am making an installation comprising 54 of these things. If you have a traditional red Etch a Sketch and could possibly spare it please post it to me and I would happily reimburse your postage as it’s costing me a fortune on Ebay! I couldn’t guarantee returning it as it would be used in my final exhibition but I will try if you would like me to in due course. If it’s got a drawing on it already – even better! I can see how much the action of going through the post would erase it!”


Posted by author: Emma Drye
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2 thoughts on “Etch a sketch project

  • this is a wonderful bit of lateral thinking which presents the exiting possibility of a multi layered, thought provoking experience. It references everything from childhood to obsolescence; formatting to the fog of failing memory. This is conceptual art made accessible in a way that allows (invites) many levels of engagement.
    I did own an etch-a-sketch, now where is it….

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