Monday, April 9, 2018

a week full of art, poetry and midcentury treasures

    from the studio of virginia fitzgerald    
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MARK your CALENDARS ...

  • Tuesday, April 10th, 7-9pm. 
Opening Reception for 'A Long Distance Relationship' at the Attleboro Arts Museum, Attleboro Arts Museum,
86 Park St., Attleboro, MA 02703, 508.222.2644
This event will include a recognition ceremony that honors each exhibiting artist and exhibition partners. Free and open to all.
www.attleboroartsmuseum.org
  • Wednesday, April 11th:
CLOSING RECEPTION of "100 Extra Days"  6-8 PM
The Carney Gallery - Regis College
235 Wellesley Street, Weston, MA 02493

MORSE LIBRARY POETRY SLAM
Poetry SLAM! 7:00 PM - 9:00 PM @ TCAN

Slam is held at The Center for Arts,
14 Summer St., Natick, MA 01760
Experience the power of words in this multigenerational SLAM for beginners and seasoned performers where only the audience gets slammed.  Led by the dynamic Geof Hewitt at the historic  The Center for Arts in Natick the evening starts with participants of the Dr. Seuss group (those ages up to 15), then moves onto the Dickinson performers, ages 15 and up.  Prizes awarded to the top performer in each group
 Free to the general public
www.natickarts.org
  • Thursday, April 12th, 6- 8 PM.
1st RENEW Pop-up Trunk Show 
Contemporary Art, Mid-Century Antiques, Sustainable Fashion and Craft Brews together at Fountain Street!
@ Fountain Street Gallery
460C Harrison Avenue, Suite 2
Boston, Massachusetts 02118
www.fsfaboston.com
Taste Springdale by Jacks Abby‘s newest innovative barrel-aged ales and sour beers. www.springdalebeer.com

For more info. check out the links above or
send me an email:

va.fitzgerald (at) comcast.net

look forward to seeing you soon!
peace, Virginia

www.virginiafitzgerald.com
Copyright © 2018 Virginia Fitzgerald, All rights reserved.
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Friday, April 6, 2018

'torqued & tethered . . . .' and a long distance relationship

'torqued & tethered . . . ' (2013) ribbons, chicken wire and rocks.

One of the pieces that I am exhibiting in Attleboro Arts Museum next exhibit, 'A long Distance  elationship' is 'torqued & tethered ...' and so I thought it was an appropriate time to share her story

I wanted to show this piece in this exhibit about the Boston Marathon because it reflects the story and experiences of women runners up until quite recently. In 1966 "for a grown woman to run in public was quite outside the social norm.” 1.
1.Interview with Bobbi Gibb April 2011; www.billrodgersrunningcenter.com/inwibogi.html
When Bobbi Gibb jumped out of the bushes to join the 500 men runners during the 1966 Boston Marathon, many thought it was life threatening for a woman to run anything longer than 1.5 miles. Bobbi hid in the bushes because she was afraid of how people would respond if they discovered that she was a woman, fearful that she would be physically removed and/or arrested.


'torqued & tethered ...' speaks to the limitations, expectations and restrictions placed on women which can stunt a woman's growth;  physically, mentally and spiritually, impeding them from reaching their full potential. This was true with women's running, especially long distance running, until trailblazers like Bobbi Gibbs, Sara Mae Berman, Kathrine Switzer and many more.



'torqued & tethered . . .' is the first of my dress sculpture where I played with the scale and shape of the dress. For this piece the bodice is stunted, emaciated, twisted and tortured. The sculpture hangs by only one of the shoulder straps, the other strap sags, defeated, exhausted. The way the bodice hangs the viewer can see in, under and through her; all is exposed. Being white, there is the suggestion of seeing bone.
'torqued & tethered . . . ' at "forever & after"
at the SSAC



The skirt of the dress is created by ribbons that hang from the bottom of the bodice. These ribbons strain against the rocks which have hold the ribbons to the floor; grounding her, repressing her, when all she really wants to do is to fly, to be free.
'torqued & tethered . . .' behind 'metamorphosis . . . '

This sculpture speaks to the omnipresent and destructive messages directed at young
girls/women, from the media (TV, movie, advertisements, ...), society, many religions and possibly family. The dress is white to implying the many cultural traditions where a girl or woman wears a white dress that represents purity, goodness, respectability and virtue. Usually a white dress is worn for baptisms, first communions, confirmations, debutante cotillions, some graduations and, and of course, a white dress is worn in a traditional wedding.
Lady Forrest 1876, Victorian style dress


'torqued and tethered . . . ', for me, represents an innocent young spirit/girl who has been pinned down by rules, expectations, dogma and traditions and who has twisted and tortured herself trying to free herself and just be who is authentically is; she just wants to soar!!!








Exhibition: April 10th – May 5th, 2018
Opening Reception: Tuesday, April 10th, 7-9pm. This event will include a recognition ceremony that honors each exhibiting artist and exhibition partners. Free and open to all.
Reservations are requested, but not required, by Friday, April 6th. 
Telephone: 508-222-2644 x10 or email office@attleboroartsmuseum.org 
thank you for your interest and peace,

va

Monday, April 2, 2018

SOS ... any suggestions for my #100DayProject?!??


It is that time of year again!?!? The100DayProject starts its 5th year tomorrow, and even though I am still in the throes of moving I must participate.

And I use the word 'must' for a few reasons. One is that I love participating in creative community challenges. Two, this is a perfect catalyst for me to unpack and find my paints and studio after this chaotic move. And lastly I choose 'must' because this desire comes from deep inside me which is how Elle Luna describes one's passions in her inspiring book:




I first read "the crossroads of should and must ...' in August 2016, after stumbling upon it and I devoured it and it has changed my creative life, or at least gave me a new perspective. 



My 'must' to do this year's 100 day project is so strong that I have numerous lists of possible projects that I'd LOVE to devote the next 100 days doing, such as:




100 days of ...

  • art blogging - posting here on my art blog, as I really want to get back in the habit of chronicling my creative journey.
  • SCRAPs: Seriously Creative Recycled Art Projects* this is my trademarked name I made for my bottle cap jewelry (decades ago) and I was thinking I would resurrect the name for 100 days of collage and working with scraps.  One thing this move showed me was that I LOVE scraps, scraps of paper, of fabric, of labels, of yarn.  This would be similar to my dailydress journal(see below), however or the 100 days of SCRAPs I wouldn't necessarily add a dress?!?! 
  • dailydresses - it almost feels too obvious, but I would love to create 100 days straight of dresses; ephemeral dresses, embroidered dresses, food dresses, sculptural dresses, painted dresses, collages?!? .... you get the idea.
  • visual gratitude - you know how gratitude is the best attitude?! I thought I'd create an image of something I was grateful for each day
'from the land of dragons ...'
  • food puns -  I have been considering rendering food quotes/puns, such as 'Olive you' with hand-lettering or using my understanding of the non-traditional material to create some interesting looking phrases.
      • 'from the land of dragons ...' since Scruffy past I haven't been walking as much so not wondering through my land of dragons ...
  • Virginia's kitchen knowledge - illustrations of helpful food facts, food prep and storage tips, recipes and whatnot.
  • my morning coffee - some kind of rendering of my morning cup of coffee 
  • 'Karoline Kitty who lives in the city' 100 drawings of the life and times of Karoline Kitty
  • Portraiture: I've learned from agent and teacher Lilla Rogers that a strong illustration portfolio shows that an illustrator can do faces!! 

OMG - the more I write this blog the more ideas I have ....
So I'm not sure how I am going to decide but I need to decide by tomorrow! if you have any thoughts I would LOVE to hear them as I am feeling pulled in many directions!! But one thing I know is that it can not take up too much time!! This project's goal is to be creative on a daily basis. And as much I as would LOVe to do all of this project and spend all day in my studio, I need to unpack! 


thank you & peace, 
va

Wednesday, March 28, 2018

we are approaching the starting line ....


Here in Massachusetts they celebrate 'Patriot's Day'. This was confusing for me when I moved to the Boston area.  I hadn't experienced a state-wide holiday, but there it was; banks were closed, schools were off and the library wasn't even open on this particular Monday in April.
I soon discovered that the Boston Marathon did take place on this day, so things were making some sense, but a state-wide holiday?!?!?

I had experienced marathons, when I lived on the upper West side and I was able to saunter over to Central Park and watch the non-elite runners finish the New York Marathon.  I was always emotional watching these runners cross the finish line after running through the five boroughs. 

My first year in the Boston area I lived in Newton and basically stumbled upon the Boston marathon.  I had put my girls in their stroller and headed toward the noise, not knowing I was going to a pinnacle point of the marathon, Heartbreak Hill. So once again I was witness to runners reaching deep at a very demanding part of the race, and again I was moved to tears by this raw expression of personal determination. 

Now the Boston Marathon is a more integral part of my life, although not to the extent of most Bostonians.  Again I am fortunate to live in one of the towns of which the race traverses; in fact I am again within walking distance of the course.  

Every year I try to join the festivities, I enjoy watching the pageantry and to be immersed in the energy of the event, but most of all I go to see and cheer on the runners.  I am always moved by the heart and spirit of each participant and in awe of their courage.

So when I was invited to contribute to the Attleboro Arts Museum's upcoming exhibit, "A Long-Distance Relationship, The 26.2 Mile Journey", I didn't hesitate to participate and to celebrate this Boston event. 

With the invitation came a list of aspects of the marathon that we artists could examine via our works: 
Enduring energy and resilience
The landscape and icons of the race route
Loyal and encouraging spectators
Product design (wheelchair, prosthetic, running shoes, gear, other)
The community of – and comradery between – runners
A Boston tradition since 1897
Hydration, nutrition, routines, training, injuries
The physical form of runners
Women join the Marathon
The Wheelchair Division
The profound impact of the 2013 Boston Marathon bombings
Watertown, shelter-in-place, the vital first responders
Boston Strong
Other
With so many interesting and provocative themes, I had a hard time deciding but settled on, "Women join the Marathon" (if felt appropriate), and I began my brainstorming procedure - sketching ideas, surfing the internet and reading books. I have become obsessed with the subject and I have been shocked  by what I learned about women and the Boston marathon, women and marathons in general and women in long distance running!

When Bobbi Gibb was the first woman to run the Boston Marathon in 1966, women were not officially allowed  to run anything longer than 800 meters.  yes you read that correctly! And the BAA (Boston Athletic Association) did not officially sanction a women's division of the Boston Marathon until 1972!! 

The subject of women joining the marathon reflects on much more then women in running, it casts its shadow on many issues and battles that women are still contesting today.

This exhibit and project has lead me to so many interesting books and so much information I need to assimilate that I plan to use this blog as a sounding board of sorts.

So stay tune and mark your calendars for this exhibit which will definitely be a winner ....
  

Friday, March 9, 2018

International Women's Day and hand-lettering

week 7 HOMwork


As I love to join in creative challenges I have jumped onto HomSweetHom's  wagon of weekly #HOMwork challenge, where each week we get an assignment to play with.
Now I signed up before I knew that I had to move in about a month, so I told myself that I would join in on the challenges once the dust had settled from my move ... HA!

Well a few weeks ago, week 7,  our assignment was:
Your assignment this week is to determine who your biggest hero is and why, then letter their name along with some of the reasons you look up to them.

This person could be someone who has made you feel like you can go after your dreams and achieve them, someone who has encouraged you along the way, or someone who has been an example to you of who and what you want to be. This person could be a mentor, a teacher, a friend, a family member, someone from a different era, or someone you've never even met.
the minute I read the assignment I knew who I would celebrate, but I put it aside because I was moving! I had also side-lined my annual postings for National Women's History Month because of moving! But when we here in Boston got a snow day yesterday and it was International Women's Day and I really do not!! like this whole moving thing, I decided I would treat myself by doing my week 7 assignment ... hand-letter my two heroes and just some of the reasons that these two women rock my world.

So in honor of International Women's Day, I wish to say thank you to my heroes, my two incredible daughters, Maya and Harriet.  You two amaze me daily. love, mom

peace & thank you,


Sunday, December 10, 2017

The Time Has Come, The Time Is Now ...

The contest ends TODAY at 6PM.
So follow the link below and give my holiday windows  at
Renew Arts and Industry some cyber-lovin'!! 

https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/ZJY2JPW

Here are some photos of said windows ....




information about the contest:

Hosted by Natick Center Cultural District
Natick Center Cultural District is happy to announce it's 6th annual Holiday Window Contest! This contest offers the businesses and favorite places downtown a chance to win the title of "Best Holiday Window 2017", be recognized in a special ceremony, win a NCCD 2018 membership, and have their business name engraved on the Holiday Window Contest trophy! 

It's not going to be easy to choose but vote for your favorite window beginning on Nov. 26th at 6:00 pm. (Voting will close on December 10th at 6:00 pm.) 

https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/ZJY2JPW

Help your favorite business by voting soon and keeping Natick looking merry and bright for the holidays!


and some detail shots!! 

It is ALWAYS such a pleasure to create the window displays for this wonderful shop!! 
Patrice is a joy to work with and the merchandise is just plain dreamy!! 
Happy Holidays all!!
(and don't forget to VOTE :)


 






Thursday, December 7, 2017

better late than .... wishing you a wonderful holiday season!!!


Magic is believing in yourself, if you can do that, 
you can make anything happen. 
Johann Wolfgang von Goethe


Feel free to download and print out this calendar 
for your personal use this month.
p.s. if you are having problems downloading 
or printing the calendar, 
just leave a comment & email and I will send you a PDF.

thank you and peace

Thursday, November 30, 2017

'out beyond ...', my contribution to the Medicine Wheel's Day Without Art

'out beyond ...' acrylic on board, 2x2ft
This fall Michael Dowling put out a call for artist to create one of 1,000 panels to be exhibited during  Medicine Wheel's Day without Art and I jumped at the opportunity.  I have worked with Michael and Medicine Wheel on numerous occasions and each time has been a rewarding and inspiring experience,  as was the case with this time. 

The vigil starts tonight at 11:30pm at the BCA and continues for 24 hours. Here is more information about the event, a link to Medicine Wheel Productions as well as a link to donate to this important community.  And below that information is a bit about this painting as well as a visual documentation of the many stages that the painting went through.  Enjoy! 

Day Without Art
World AIDS Day 
Friday December 1, 2017
Boston Center for the Arts 
539 Tremont Street 
Boston, MA 02116 
Vigil begins at 11:30 pm on 
Thursday November 30th 
on the BCA Plaza 
and runs for the full 24 hours of Friday December 1st 
ending at Midnight. 
Gather at 11:30 for a processional walk into the Cyclorama Plaza! 


In 1987 a small group gathered in a San Francisco storefront to document the lives they feared history would forget. This action served as the beginning of the Names Project, also known as the AIDS Memorial Quilt. Today, 30 years later, over 1000 artists, visual and performing, have re-invested in the power of that action to create a space to hold the human heart, a space to reflect, a space to remember, a space to see who we can be for ourselves and one another. 
To honor this anniversary we will be displaying a large section of the AIDS Memorial Quilt during the vigil. 
Please bring an offering of remembrance to leave in one of the Medicine Wheel shrines. 


Now about 'out beyond ...' 

This Fall I saw this call for art,
" As we gear up for the 26th annual Medicine Wheel and the 29th Day Without Art/ World AIDS Day we are looking for 1000 artists to re-invest in the power of Art and Healing to create a space that holds the human condition. Please consider painting a 2 foot by 2 foot panel with the theme of AIR in the colors of the sky to be part a the 1000 voice mural at the Boston Center for the Arts December 1."
and I happily answered YES

With the theme of AIR and the colors of the sky I decided I would work in blues and revisit my ' intuitive line paintings' from my installation that I creates in 2009 with Medicine Wheel, 'this comes from within ...'  Painting the walls for that installation is one of my fondest creative moment memories!!
'wall detail' from 'this comes from within ...'
 I love how organic these method of painting is for me.  
This painting method is a true dialogue between me and the work, 
as you will see how this painting went through so many versions 
before the painting and I agreed it was finished.  

When I got the blank white 2x2 board I started out by painting in big letters,
"Out beyond ideas of wrongdoing and rightdoing"
Recently I am enamored with Rumi's poems and 
especially this line and the meaning of these words.
Once the words were painted, my journey began, shapes and objects appeared
and disappeared.  
in this photo you can still see a few of the lettering ...

at this point the lettering has vanished ...








now is the time with the subtle changes ... this can also be the most frustrating time
as I don't want to overwork the painting, but somethings still don't feel right
painting in my living room, my daughters are so patient with me :)
voila - the finished painting, waiting to head back to Medicine Wheel Productions