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


  1. Virginia, just read and saw this post, I am with you...and feel your angst and your creative spirit sizzling, looking for a place & a way to have not lost your touch! you're living a full life and the art is in you, ready willing and able, when time and circumstance open the door, despairing, live the moment, talk with you very soon

  2. thank you dear friend!! it is feeling a bit dire right now but i do know that this too will pass!! hope to see u soon!!! xxx


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