Arminée Chahbazian and Jacqueline M Byrne. Dorset - California.

Arminée Chahbazian in California and Jacqueline M Byrne in Dorset UK have been collaborating by post since late 2017.

Jacqueline lives on an organic wildflower and grasses farm on the Dorset Jurassic coast. Her practice is focussed on 'traces and memories'. Primarily but not exclusively she works outside, and broadly terms herself as a 'site and subject responsive' artist. Her work is housed in various collections.

Arminée has been based in Northern California in the Napa Valley for over twenty years and has exhibited widely in shows including the Napa Valley Museum and Sonoma Valley Museum. Her work ranges from sculpture to paper based works and paintings. She is interested in human responses to nature and environmental shifts.

A selection of the works Jacqueline and Arminée have created together include; 'Walkbox' (a concept developed by Jacqueline) where items found while walking were collected, displayed and exchanged.

Jaqueline’s ‘Walk box’ in Arminee's Garden. Image credit Arminée Chahbazian.

Jaqueline’s ‘Walk box’ in Arminee's Garden. Image credit Arminée Chahbazian.

'Footprint' a work about walking in ash around their respective locations; Arminée walked barefoot in the ash of the devastating California wildfire of October 2017, sending her footprint printed on paper to Jacqueline, who in turn sent a footprint made in ash fertiliser created through the traditional crop control processes on her farm. The resulting work was exhibited at the Earth Action Initiative Climate Conference and Art Show in UC Berkeley California in April 2018.

And 'Luck Reflected' a work created from a simple exchange of stones with holes through them – often called hag stones, witch stones, holey stones, and by Jacqueline, 'Lucky stones'. The stones were thought to have magical properties according to British and Welsh folklore. Each artist photographed their stone in a mirror.

‘Luck Reflected’ photographed in Dorset UK by Jacqueline M Byrne.

‘Luck Reflected’ photographed in Dorset UK by Jacqueline M Byrne.

Most recently the artists have concentrated on developing ideas stemming from the materials surrounding them – water, flora, fauna and minerals. Works include paintings made from snail trails, plant pigment and fossil imprints. Jacqueline says:

‘Living on the Jurassic coast, over the years we have found fossils along the coast while out walking after rock falls...I attempted to capture the shape of these natural mineral sculpture by placing squares of untreated canvas on the ammonites, covering the cloth with earth and leaving them to weather outside for approximately one month.'

Image created from buried canvas and Ammonite fossil. Jacqueline Byrne.

Image created from buried canvas and Ammonite fossil. Jacqueline Byrne.

Arminée made images from canvas laden with iron rich clay, pond mud, gravel and shale from her property and canvas wrapped around a rock and burried in a soil bank that drained into her pond.

Arminée Chahbazian, ‘Mineral’ experiment. California.

Arminée Chahbazian, ‘Mineral’ experiment. California.

Arminée and Jacqueline continue to make work together as part of our Residency by Correspondence programme and are planning on creating a book documenting the work they have made together.