Friday, March 30, 2012

It's Everywhere

Finding inspiration for what I do...
Murmuring & Musings
Wire, pulp, encaustic collage
everywhere I go.
Balloons in Kennett Square

Connections, entanglments, - the flotsam and jetsom of our lives- keeps it interesting. always.

Have a great weekend. Kids are on spring break, flowers are blooming... Griffin is looking for his eye drops. Open those windows, bring on the Allegra D!

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Spring blossoms

These first blossoms of spring make our street feel magical. It's happening now, doesn't last too long. Just have to take it in and smile. 

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Inspiration for Letting Loose

Southern California painter & jewelry artist Cathy Bennett is this week's guest blogger for the Artist as Collector Series.
Lemons Still Life
Oil on canvas
11" x 14"
©2012Catherine Grawin

I was attending a meeting of a local art guild to see the demo of an oil painter, Catherine Grawin, who I had heard about from other painters.   Her style was “loose and bold” and that was actually the next step I needed to take (in my own work.)  As luck would have it, I won the demo painting she did for the guild, Lemons Still Life….and I was thrilled.   After that I took her “Big and Loose” class through the La Jolla Athenaeum for several years.   

To top it off we have become good friends and she is a part of my life.  

Cathy Bennett  paints, makes jewelry and travels the world with her own "Big and Loose" passion for life.

How has your love of a piece of art led you to a new friend?

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Simple Beauty

Orchid Plant
I have been "orchid sitting" for my mom while my parents are being "snow birds" down south.
Mom is quite protective of her "baby," but I assured her I would take very good care of it.

Fortunately I found the perfect spot in my house- and my TLC has paid off-  when I checked on her today I was gifted with the first flower.

Isn't she lovely?

Simple beauty, simple pleasures. (plus don't you love the pink wall?)

Monday, March 12, 2012

The Joy of Fearlessness

Nets, detail
Wire, pulp, encaustic, collage

"...Now I know that joy was a kind of fearlessness, a letting go of expectations that the world should be anything other than what it was."
                                               Lucy Grealy
                                               Autobiography of a Face

My love of words led me to Lucy Grealy. Recently, scanning the shelves at our local book store,
Hockessin Book Shelf, I found Ann Patchett's memoir of her friendship with Lucy Grealy in her book truth & beauty. Anything Ann Patchett writes is rich and wonderful and this book was no exception. Ann writes honestly and poignantly about their friendship. I wanted to know more, and read Lucy's words.

I was not disappointed.  In Autobiography of a Face, Lucy writes about dealing with childhood cancer, Ewing's Sarcoma, the resulting disfiguring surgeries, and the depth of the loneliness and depression she suffered with for the rest of her, all too brief, life.

The book is engagingly powerful. Her insight into how we see ourselves, and how not feeling or looking beautiful can be so painful in our society. However, through it all,  her words are poetic, courageous, beautifully written, and above all- inspiring.

I resolve to be fearless in learning to accept my work, myself, and to put love in everything I do.

As someone I met once said "All you need is love..."

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Altered Books Workshop

Saturday's Altered Book Workshop at DCAD was an inspired & inspiring nudge of what happens when you create time and space for yourself- and making art. The workshop covered basic book structures and image transfers.  These demos became a departure point for projects in every direction.
Burnishing an image to be transfered 

Each participant came with different experiences, resources, materials, images, tools, and a need to carve out some time to learn something new, be creative, and let go of outside responsibilities.

"This day with you was a gift to travel a creative path and explore all the “stuff” I have accumulated over the years such as buttons, lace, paper, old letters, etc. I have been vindicated for saving everything."
Natalie Crawford

Add caption
We altered books, inside and out.

Weaver  Gynnie Moody brought her sensibility for pattern and
surface design to this Envelope Accordion Fold Book
and left feeling excited, energized... 

and, for me- ready for a little nap.  

Sunday, March 4, 2012

de la Cruz Collection in Miami

Most of my week in Miami Beach with friend and artist, Shari Epstein was on foot or bike.  We took time one afternoon to rent a car and visit some of the galleries in Miami's Wynwood Art District and the Design District.   
Gallery spaces in the midst of vacant lots,
murals and sporatic palm trees in the Wynwood Art district.
Crocheted bicycle by olek,
Chuck Close print of Philip Glass, far right,
and in the rear wall on left, a Damien Hirst print
 Vibera Lebetina
Shepard Fairey wall in Design District
Highlight of the afternoon was a visit to the de la Cruz collection in the Design District.  The building  was 3 floors of exciting contemporary art, beautiful light, and wonderful open space. It was designed and built specifically for the collection and offered a lovely reprieve from many of the windowless, vault like galleries in Wynwood.
We were greeted by Melissa, a young woman with a great job, who also informed us that free tours were available- which we promptly took her up on. Melissa led Shari and I through the building introducing us to the work and answering all of our questions with insight and interesting anecdotes.
Melissa (left) and Shari on the second floor in front
of Aaron Curry's work.
Another view of an Aaron Curry sculpture &
installation looking down to the first floor
Miami, like any other city- a land
of contrasts, view from the 2nd floor window
of the de la Cruz collection

Shari in front of a Jim Hodges installation on the
3rd floor, holding a take away piece of a
Felix Gonzalez -Torres installation.

Sure beats coming home with a T-Shirt!

Friday, March 2, 2012

Breaking up with Facebook

Remember the 2000 movie Castaway?  Tom Hanks plays a FedEx employee stranded on a deserted island after his plane crashes in the South Pacific. 
Shari's little face made of cherry pits and a stem on a napkin.
Seeing this little "face" on a napkin in Shari's kitchen in Miami Beach last week reminded us both of Wilson, Hank's silent companion in the film- a volleyball with his bloodied handprint as a face on the ball.

Wilson, from Castaway
Hanks' character survived his ordeal through tenacity, strength, and the grace of God. His old life was no longer available to him upon his return to civilization, and we see him at a crossroads, literally and figuratively at the end of the movie.

Now as a two time breast cancer survivor I know that I, too am at a crossroads.  Different situation, different issues, but one thing I know for sure is that I need to minimize stress.

And Facebook I have come to realize for me, is not only an obvious time suck, but a stresser.  So I am taking a break for 90 days.  A trial separation if you will.  I don't want to think about if I posted, or if I did post was it LIKED or followed or anything else like that. I want to be present, to be healthy, to make art and just BE. (right Donna?!)

I plan on continuing to blog. And hope that you will comment below (just click on the word comment and a window will pop up), or email me... or call. I love a conversation- even if its online, but like Wilson who drifts out to sea from Hank; sometimes you got to let go of what isn't real... and continue searching for, what is. It's a matter of survival.