Saturday, April 30, 2011

Spring shows

My work will be in Winchester next week, as part of the NEXT door Center for the Arts.  It's a great place to shop for Mother's Day, weddings, graduations.

Western Avenue Studios holds Open Studio too, from  noon to 5 on Saturday May 7. You can join our Spring Art Thing::  tour the building, get your card stamped and become eligible for one of three gift certificates good with any artist in the building.  If you visit, get to the fifth floor and visit Lowell Fiber Studio - meet my colleagues and see what we've been up to.


Stop by the Loading Dock Gallery on the second floor - I'm at the desk that day!

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Collage Class

fun in the studio
This past weekend I had the pleasure of taking a class with a local artist, Alexandra Sheldon.
I've admired her work for years. Turns out her studio is just a subway stop from my house, and our kids are one year apart at the nearby high school. Small world.

Alexandra's a calm, inspiring teacher, ready to share. We built our own stamps and used gesso to create patterns on a variety of humble papers: newspaper, mostly, plus old magazines and sheet music.
The magic happens when you add layers of acrylic washes. The gesso instantly produces a second value, plus any images on the papers produce shades, so  for one color you get two, three or more values in related designs all over the surface. A thrill for such as me.
Two of my own students showed  up. It was great to see them again, and to work beside them. Six students altogether, who produced three walls of papers in less than 2 hours.
After a break we created collages on bristol board, using the papers we'd made. In all, a satisfying day of escape, thought, creativity. I came home and started working with the same techniques but incorporating fabric. More of that, soon.

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Idea in Progress

 The fortune cookie on this collage reads:  "Make up your mind and do what you want to do."  Good advice.
Here I am, surfing and typing before I walk the dog, early on a wet Saturday morning. Antibiotics, much sleep and the simple fact of time (and more sleep) have brought my daughter and me back to something like working speed. To celebrate we watched  back-to-back episodes of Dr. Who last night. At last: time just to enjoy a good story.

I am turning the next piece(s) over in my mind. Something to do with daughters and time, the  moment seen, the moment past. I've one larger fabric printed, and I'm trying to figure out whether to cut into it:
I also printed on blue. That piece is raggedy now, as I cut out the best images. They seemed to want to be isolated/rearranged. The remaining fragment has a blurred but intriguing quality to it:
 I also have a strip on white ripstop nylon, that gives an eerie, translucent quality to the image, and reminds me of an old film strip.

Any thoughts?

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Layers of memory

 I have a a show in three months. Just a heart beat ago, it was half a year away. Somehow Life takes up a lot of time. Taxes, bills, family. Transportation, worries, plans.
 This piece began years ago, a salvaged linen table cloth. The deepest layers were dye, screen printed one spring over plant snipping I brought into the studio. Over a year later I printed again with dye. Then I waited, listening for what it wanted to be. A painting class with Elizabeth DaCosta Ahern raised new questions about intent. Now it is layered with acrylics, both printed and painted, and then several top coats of glaze. It reads almost like an encaustic. I'm pleased.

Meanwhile, at the beginning of the process, are prints made from a photo of my mother and her late sister, when they were girls. 

 It fascinates me, this sense of time captured, time remembered, time lost. What to do with these feelings, these images?

Friday, April 15, 2011

On My Desk Right Now

Spring finally sneaking around the corner. Pansies, daffodils, buds on the trees, even if the temperature is going down into the 30s tonight.  I have been down with the flu and flat out with family stuff. Now, my head is clearing. In March I said this piece would be done. Now, well, I'm getting close.