Monday, March 26, 2012

New Work: Links (part 1)

A couple of weeks ago I did my usual thing of looking at the calendar to see what was coming up the next week and realized there was a deadline I had forgotten about. A LOOMING deadline. 

Good grief - why is it that I can't get myself to work on these things ahead of time? Of course I begin to mull things over in my head as soon as I know the requirements for the show so it wasn't a huge scramble to come up with a new idea. It would have been kinder to my self to have begun at least a week earlier though so that I could have more time to test variations on my ideas.

The theme of this show was "Rituals." It is a juried invitational - which means the curators invite a number of people to participate - but the final artworks still have to go through a jury process and have a chance of being rejected. I think it's a good thing. The organizers start with a set of known artists whose work they admire but the artists are still encouraged to do their best work, knowing it isn't a sure bet.

I started with a portrait taken by the talented photographer, Julia Wade. It's been a favorite of mine for a long time and she gave me permission to create artwork from her photography. Remember - just because you've paid for a piece or art or photography does not mean you own the copyright - that remains with the artist.

In thinking about the theme of "Rituals" has had me noticing their importance in my life. I have rituals that range from a tiny repeated gesture that brings me simple comfort to the most deeply important spiritual practices that are central to who I am. The common factor among all of them is that they link me to the world around me, to my family and friends, and to the generations before and ahead of me. 

I played for a day with photoshop and different iterations of the portrait until I came up with something I liked then spent another day fussing with my wonderful (but persnickety) wide format Epson printer.

Next I created a thermofax screen with swirly circles on it and printed some white on white cloth. I think circles are a major theme in much of my work. When I'm thinking about them deeply, as I was in this piece, they represent something whole, something never-ending, things that are connected. Most of the time - they are just my favorite shape to play with.

Check in tomorrow for the rest of the story.