Monday, April 26, 2010

NOT A MESSAGE


Not a Message, mixed media on canvas, 8" x 8"

Started at the last uac workshop the focus of this project was to show something about visions of Phoenix. Since I am still adjusting to life in the desert, my source of joy about Phoenix are the interesting, creative people I have met here.

In planning the layout I wanted to use layers of tracing paper over layers of images and text. As I worked with the cut papers I had brought with me I was planning to do some rolled up Hebrew scrolls and place them in bottles to be part of the artwork, (channeling Joseph Cornell) thinking I could frame it in a deep box. When one of the women said it made her think of a "message in a bottle" I cringed. All I could envision was that corny Kevin Costner movie. That was entirely not the feeling I wanted to convey. The Sting song kept playing over and over in my head... message in a bottle, yeah, message in a bottle.... It was my perception that altered my original concept.

This set me in a rotten mood because I was not loving the direction that the collage was going in anyway. When I got home I just had to burn and wax and "destroy" what I had created. All I could think of was the work of Anselm Kiefer: heavy, angry, burning, tar. I threw my canvas in the fireplace and burned it, dripped wax on it and splattered "bloody" crayon.

It was cathartic and satisfying. Thank you.

MA GRAND-MERE EST MORTE


Ma Grand-mere est morte, oil on canvas, transfer and collage

The background for this work was started for another series, but I changed my mind and decided to create something new. The image of my grandmother was taken in 1953. This is the picture that I have in my mind of her. Mostly I remember her dark wavy hair. She died when i was seven. A wonderful little french book that contained a collection of work by children was on sale at a local book fair. For this project I used some of the text from it.

I will be sending this collage to the 6x6x2010 show at RoCo (Rochester Contemporary Art Center) in upstate New York. All images must be 6"x 6" in size and will be sold for $20. This is an international call for entries and all work will be displayed anonymously. Last year there were over 3000 pieces by 1200 artists from 17 countries. It sounds like fun.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

BODY OF EVIDENCE TWO

The Kalamazoo Book Arts Center has posted many of the books that were submitted for the current show The Illustrated Accordion April 2 – 30. Todd submitted his Royal Flush book, made from vintage playing cards with individual, original, miniature water colors of the face cards for all the suits. It is quite exquisite. Mary C. Leto sent her wonderful book Button Tales, Myths and Superstitions, on her own handmade paper with attached paper buttons of various sizes and colors juxtaposed on the names of the dead, pasted to gravestones. It is beautiful.



This week I worked on the companion piece in the Body of Evidence series. I still have to finish the cover, but the pages are complete, and I believe my skills at putting them together have improved. The process of making books is really enjoyable to me. There are so many steps to keep you interested: the narrative, the art, the paper, the assembly, the cover, etc. Stay tuned for more.