Wednesday, April 27, 2011

artistic existential angst

so .... I feel like it has been years since I have posted on this blog!! I have been working on my daily dress project blog ~ which I wonder what is the purpose of doing it, but then I still do. But now here I am!!! And I feel like sharing what I have been experiencing lately. As I think about it, it is yet another roller coaster ride, ups and downs (more the downs) ~ and there are many legit reasons for this ride, but every time I speed into the loopty-loop I feel scared and lost, and maybe sharing will help me and others!!

So in the past month, give or take, I have had a mind blowing experience at Vermont Studio Center, as well as set up and took down 2 significant gallery shows. The latter alone can send me into a minor tailspin but I think the combination has taken its toll. Also I returned from a time of living and breathing art to a schedule that doesn't allow for much studio time ~ teaching (with extracurricular activities) and a family that really missed me and wants their due!! Add to that the revelation from VSC to take better care of myself!!! whew!! In fact today was an 'old Virginia' day, which means high energy, get in as much as I can!! It was a great day but this falls under the category of burning the candle at both ends ~ up @ 6ish to get girls ready & off to school, teach from 8-2:30, then pickup girls and friends for an artistic field trip, dinner and some much needed flip-flop shopping!! I love these days and the artistic field trip was to ArtSpace in Maynard for Catherine Evans' show, Struggling with Entropy. It is a wonderful show - so inventive and talk about a woman who knows her way with materials - 14. 2 miles of gimp, Clementine boxes, yoplait cups and sharpies on medium-density fibreboard (MDF). It is an spirited show, sadly ending on Friday. The wall of gimp is breath-taking, viewed up close it is one thing: a study of gesture and color combinations and technique. Viewed from a distance it is another: a study of color and movement. Catherine is an inspiring soul ~ full of ideas with the courage to develop them!! Talking with her this afternoon was stimulating, it helped me to feel like the artist that I am. She had also set up an interactive work station with squares of MDF and sharpies of every color ~ so I sat down and drew a dress!! Working with the sharpies on the MDF is dreamy ~ she has created a large wall piece called, "too many markers to count" which I have admired for awhile, so it was delightful to make my own design. And I am happy with it, although I am thinking about putting some text behind the words.
I have been doing a few thing with text lately. I love to work with words, legible and illegible. I like to think that the essence of the word is in the work, even if it can't be read. I started this diptych about my VSC experience and both sides have words. The background of the piece on the left is filled with words about my experience and I am thinking of putting words behind my sharpie/MDF dress. Words that convey strength, knowing, courage and spirit!! to note finding my artist self again!!

The idea for the diptych pieces came from my daily dress project/journal. Both of the visiting artists @ VSC were drawn to my daily dress book. Both were fascinated and suggested that i create the pages in a larger format & this is what I did for the VSC diptych. I don't think they are as successful as the pages in the book which are intimate and manageable ~ but it is a good experiment. It is interesting once the first ddp (daily dress project) book was done I was a bit at sea on how to continue. I loved the idea of making some days bigger and some small. But as with so many things - reality trumps idea. So I have a new moleskin book, but even with that I am struggling ~ saving many materials from each day but not being able to create the pages :(. Time is the culprit!! and I must remember that ~ not that I have lost my 'touch'. All those artists out there know what I am talking about - any blip is your work and immediately you question you place in this world as an artist.

So I am struggling with that question and how much does one alter their life to accommodate this desire, or does one even have a choice?!? I am believing more and more that I don't have a choice ~ if I am not creating I implode. So, voila ~ artistic existential angst. More on the issue, but now pillows beckon, haven't seen them for around 18 hours. peace

Monday, April 4, 2011

announcing....yet, another obsession

Now how to begin.....
I was given a moleskin notebook for a project called The Sketchbook Project (more about that project later, but for now.... ) I became quite enamored with my moleskin notebook with the kraft paper cover and when I finished that book I wanted more!! & ever since beginning The Dress Project I have toyed with the idea of a daily dress. Also during this time my studio time has become shorter because I am spending many of the daylight hours in a classroom, so there has been some pent~up dress creativity. So I got myself another moleskin notebook and suddenly the pieces fell together.... introducing the Daily Dress Project or journal.

For this journal I create a page from some detritus that comes to me during the course of the day ~ a receipt, a paper bag, packing material, whatever catches my fancy; that is be the starting point. Then I build the page around that element and eventually I add an origami dress. Sometime the dress is large, sometimes small; one time the dress isn't even there, you get the idea.

This project has become a wonderful addiction as well as an exhilarating experience. To the left is a photo of a new notebook - a plain paper, 5.25 X 8.25 inch, 80 page Moleskin Cahier Sketchbook. Below you see images of what my Daily Dress Journal looks like NOW ~ I need a rubber-band to keep it closed!!! I am truly smitten ~ everyday a new puzzle to work out, a new challenge, a new opportunity to create. On these pages I am experimenting with different media and new techniques. And of course there is the nostalgic side of this ~ each journal page encapsulates a moment in my life, a diary of images.

As this journal is almost done, and I am playing with some ideas about how to continue. But as I ponder how to go forward with this project, I realized that I wanted to share this 'idee fixe', so voila the Daily Dress Project blog!

Yes, I know.... another blog?!?! but after much thought it only seemed appropriate ~ the daily dress project needed its own space where each day will have its own spotlight! not squeezed in between shows announcements and creatures and larger dresses.

To begin I have posted 6 dresses on the site, and a little story about that day's collage, if need be. I am going to try and keep the text to a minimum, have it be more about the image. So I hope you have a moment to go share in my latest all~consuming passion & I'd love to hear what you think!!

& peace

Saturday, April 2, 2011

fundraiser for Rosie's Place ~ tonight

I am participating in a fund raiser for Rosie's Place in Boston, a wonderful place......

Rosie’s Place, a sanctuary for poor and homeless women, offers emergency and long-term assistance to women who have nowhere else to turn. Founded in 1974, Rosie’s Place welcomes each guest with respect and unconditional love. Rosie’s Place accepts no government funds, and relies instead on committed volunteers and private supporters to accomplish its effective and innovative work.

The fundraiser is this evening in Framingham ~ below is the announcement
from the organizer, Cheryl Perreault. Hope to see u there!!


I would also like to announce a special fundraiser that I am involved with taking place tomorrow between the hours of 4:00 and 10:00.
This event will be an open-house style ...come when you can for a few hours or stay the entire time! This special event of partaking of Mexican food, listening to a non-stop line-up of talented female performers and viewing beautiful art...all for a donation of your choice for Rosie's Place is the vision
and creation of singer-songwriter Ruthann Baler who is founder of Strike A Chord
There will be ongoing music performed by a line-up of 30 talented women and I look forward to emceeing the whole event with my dear friend Ellen Schmidt! There will also be a number of artists exhibiting artwork including previous guest features of the Women's Art Forum such as Jeanine Vitale, Kris Waldman, Lynne Damianos and Virginia Fitzgerald. In fact, Virginia will be exhibiting a wall piece in addition to one of her special dress art pieces! All artwork will be available for purchase and each artist has kindly agreed to donate a portion or all of their sales to Rosie's Place!
A line-up of the performers and a listing of the artists can be found in the attachment.
I'm really looking forward to this special event of women artists sharing their art for women of Rosie's Place.
This event is open to the public. We would love to see you there in support of this special cause.