Monday, January 26, 2009

Food for Thought

Had a great evening last Thursday at the Long Beach Island Foundation of Arts & Sciences in Loveladies, NJ
I was invited to speak at the first of a series of Artist Potluck Dinners. Not quite knowing what to expect, I loaded up my car with some new works in progress, and some works that I thought would help put these new pieces in a context.

Drove the 2 hours on a beautiful sunny day, the trip was a breeze! Snacks in the car, no traffic, and two hours door to door. Boy, I love my GPS!

The room was set up with tables for dinner and conversation. And, as a show had recently come down, the walls were mine. I quickly went to work hanging and installing the pieces.

People began arriving with their dishes, grabbing name tags and mingling. We did an hour or so of eating and chatting. Some people knew each other, but clearly there were a lot of new faces to the Foundation. Chris Seiz, the Executive Director of the Foundation, welcomed everyone, told us a little about himself and the idea behind these Artist Potlucks. He asked us to introduce ourselves and offer input on what they would like to see these venues offer. After we went around the room and found out a little about each other I began to talk about my work and my process. We talked quite a bit about walking the tightrope of being an artist- working in solitude and the value of a community of artists, as well as the balance of trusting where you are when you may be uncertain where it is that you are going.

The feedback and conversation was wonderful- and insightful. It is always to good to check in and I met some new people and reconnected with Karen Smith, an artist who I met years ago when I first returned from Hawaii.

The LBI Foundation is a wonderful resource for artists and the community at large. Nice exhibition spaces, great classes, workshops, and work spaces. They also have many opportunities for artists so check our their web page and see what they are up.

The staff there couldn't be more supportive, the beach is beautiful any time of the year. I saw a seal on the beach the next morning during a long walk!

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Artist Talk today at Long Beach Island Foundation

I'm off to NJ later today to give an artist talk at the Long Beach Island Foundation of Arts & Sciences. Apparently, I am the first in the series of artist talks/ pot lucks/ get-to-gethers. I will be gathering up some new work in progress. While thinking about the work it occurred to me a couple of things... the first being the influence of the painter/sculptor Ed McGowin. I had the opportunity to assist Ed in his studio when I was a student at Pratt Institute in the the early 1980's. Ed's diverse use of materials and narrative tableaus has shaped me through the years- without me even realizing it until very recently. I googled him yesterday, there he was with a fabulous website

I have also been thinking alot about the use of narrative in my work- and how there is a continuity between past and present, the physical body, transcendence, faith and fear. Off to load up my car... more on this another time.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Barack,Eva,Elvie & Me- Inauguration Day 2009

What a day! Sharing this historic moment with Eva and Elvie...basking in the moment (in the warmth of my house)... the pundits are critiquing his speech, discussing their outfits (fabulous Michele) you name it. But there is no denying it- this was truly a great day for America, for everyone in the world. And at the core of his message, and my belief, is that he is where he is, because we as a people are ready for this change, for this coming together to heal, serve, rebuild, and renew. Let's all hold that in our hearts and minds....Onward and upward.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Hope* Healing* Renewal- InaugurationDay 2009

Just got back from taking Griffin to the school bus stop this clear, bright, and crisp January morning. The DJ on the radio was talking about the Inauguration of Barack Obama and asked what it means to you (us). That question permeates the air as I come back home and see the crowds already at the Mall since dawn (and probably earlier) on CNN.

The words Hope, Healing, and Renewal come to my mind. Pride. So many emotions and thoughts that shine with optimism and possibility.

God Bless the Obama Family. God Bless America, God Bless Everyone in this world. Can one person turn the tides of generations of history... perhaps the time is right, where we can come together and he is where he is - because of where we are. HOPE.

Thursday, January 8, 2009

A Leap of Faith- Thanks Boss!

I was in my studio yesterday. It had been a while that I had a chunk of time and was committed to working on my wire and encaustic pieces. Things weren't going quite as I planned/hoped/
"saw" in my head. I was starting to get a bit frustrated but had enough presence to not let those negative tapes start running in my head. Working on my yoga off the mat and in the studio can be a challenge for me, especially when I am not "in the zone." I reminded myself its like when I swim laps...the first 20 or 30 are more of an effort, I am counting, strategizing, etc. but then there is this subtle shift in consciousness- and I am there. Can't force it to happen, just happens.

But there I was in the studio, frustration yapping at my heels, when The Boss- my old Monmouth County "neighbor" Bruce Springsteen starts singing on my CD player...

It takes a leap of faith to get things going
It takes a leap of faith you gotta show some guts
It takes a leap of faith to get things going
In your heart you must trust

Sure enough...with a little patience and trust some interesting things started to happen...images forth coming in the near future. In the meantime here is my piece titled Walkabout.

Thanks for the reminder Bruce!

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Showing Up

One thing you can count on this time of year is the proliferation of suggestions of how to approach the new year- tips and such for self improvement, setting goals and resolutions. Some may have merit, others are fun to read and still more...whatever, you can pick and choose.

One that I am putting out there and taking in is....
1. Showing up. whether it is my studio, my yoga mat, the pool (for getting in a routing on those laps) or being present with my family, it all begins simply with that.

And, with that, here I am, showing up at my blog. Committing to showing up, being present, and who knows, where it will all lead to. But as the title of a beautiful book that I was gifted years ago, suggests....
The Journey is the Destination (the journals of Dan Eldon, edited by Kathy Eldon, Chronicle Books)

Thursday, January 1, 2009

New Beginnings- Happy New Year!

It's a clear, crisp New Year's Day 2009 -WOW! This is the year I turn 50- not for another 6 months but in all honesty I think I may need to the time to get used to the idea that I am no longer 25! This is a good thing anyway. I was in Hawaii then and grooving on being there, but there was a lot more angst in my psyche and soul. Now I am much more comfortable with who I am and at peace in my body- (though cosmetic surgery is beginning to sound alot more appealling!)

My friend and yoga buddy, Christian emailed me an interesting questionnaire to reflect on the past year and use as a tool for the New Year. I love this kind of stuff! It's like a fun homework assignment for me- brings presence into my life and allows me to slow down and reflect. It also prompts me to regroup and look at what is important to me. I also find that when I write things down it lays down the path for it to happen...

This is a monotype that I did a month or so ago when my new friend Eva Ygfeldt came over to print with me in my studio. It is titled "An Afternoon with Eva." Simple. Simple is good, I have been know to overthink things. (hmmm) So here I am putting it out there; One of my biggest intentions/ goals for 2009- to create and enjoy the process, be in the process, have fun, be open and stay out of my head. That's not to say content and all that other art school jargon won't play a part of it, but it is the act of creation I want to be a part of and see what path that leads me.

Happy 2009... and may all beings everywhere be happy and free.....