a peek inside the fishbowl

07 Mar, 2006

Art needs input

Posted by andrea tomkins in: - Found objects|File under crafty

I’m working on an art piece.

I’ve been collecting small found items for the past year or so. I’ve amassed many cool little things including buttons big and small, a “go directly to jail” Monopoly card, marbles, jewelry bits, beads and lots of other little things. I’ve tucked each one into a very small ziplock baggie.

Why? Well, because I find these found traces of people’s lives facsinating. Each one is a clue to a personal history. Some signify a more meaningful kind of loss. (e.g Can you play Monopoly without a “go directly to jail card” ? Maybe, but it wouldn’t be the same, would it?)

Now that the snow is melting I’m hoping to discover other little lost treasures and finish the piece. Well, the question as to the when is a bit up in the air, because I’ve been collecting without much regard as to where it’s leading and how many pieces I need in order to call it a day.



1) I want to attach these little bits to something so that each item is repeatedly removable.
2) I want to hang it somewhere on a wall here at home.

I was initially considering using corkboard but I’m not crazy about the look of it. It’s so brown. And corky. And it would look the same to me even if it was covered in a layer of paint.

What about a mini clothesline strung between an old wooden painted frame? I don’t know what it will be yet… but I would love to hear your suggestions if you have any.

That all being said, I don’t really see this thing as ever being totally completed. I would really love to bring it somewhere and have other people add their own found items. I don’t think everyone would understand it, or appreciate it in the same way I would, but wouldn’t that be neat?

2 Responses to "Art needs input"

1 | Mary Lynn Smith

April 11th, 2007 at 11:57 am


How about hanging from a funky old chandelier? Or, following the inspiration of your easter tree, a found objects tree?

I love this idea. I’ve always liked finding little precious (to me) things.

2 | Mary Lynn Smith

April 11th, 2007 at 12:02 pm


One more: or, you can embed them in craft cement, you know, like a mosaic.

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My name is Andrea and I live in the Westboro area of Ottawa with my husband Mark and our dog Piper who is kind of a big deal on Instagram. We also have two human daughters: Emma (20) and Sarah (18). During the day I work as a writer at The Royal Ottawa Mental Health Centre. I am a longtime Ottawa blogger and I've occupied this little corner of the WWW since 1999. The Fishbowl is my whiteboard, water cooler, and journal, all rolled into one. I'm passionate about healthy living, arts and culture, family travel, great gear, good food, and sharing the best of Ottawa for families. I also love vegetables, photography, gadgets, and great design.

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