Judy Wise's blog.
If you missed Ricë's interview with Roz Stendahl, here it is again.
Ricë's other podcast interviews can be found here.
A Book About Death, an unbound book on the subject of death, a project by Matthew Rose opened at the Emily Harvey Foundation Gallery in New York City on September 10, 2009. Approximately 500 artists sent in 500 post card works to be distributed in the gallery space as pages for the "book."
This video is the work of Angela Ferrara, and the music, Praan, is by the Los Angeles-based composer Garry Schyman. The works, installation shots, videos and a download of the posters for A Book About Death is at here.
A look at Man Ray, his life and work will be presented, ironically, at the Jewish Museum in New York City starting November 15.
Ray not only distanced himself from his family roots, in what is referred to as his "dialectic of assimilation," he essentially became "the enigma" he wishes for among the surreal and splendid artists and writers of Dada, all gathered together in Paris, also intent on redefining art and themselves.
Best known for his photographs, Man Ray, like his contemporary, Picasso, was a prodigious artist who invented the rayograph, and assembled a huge number of works from paper to conceptual structures.
As I am a fan of both Dada and all things surreal, I will make every effort to see the exhibit.
Information on the exhibit can be found at the Jewish Museum.
Now months later, wind blowing, rain pouring, and one unsettling early October snow, my Maple's leaves have become a nesting ground for my animal neighbours and the tree itself stands starkly proud.
The Maple with its tassell flowers of green
That turns to red, a stag horn shapèd seed
Just spreading out its scallopped leaves is seen,
Of yellowish hue yet beautifully green.
Bark ribb'd like corderoy in seamy screed
That farther up the stem is smoother seen,
Where the white hemlock with white umbel flowers
Up each spread stoven to the branches towers
And mossy round the stoven spread dark green
And blotched leaved orchis and the blue-bell flowers -
Thickly they grow and neath the leaves are seen.
I love to see them gemm'd with morning hours.
I love the lone green places where they be
And the sweet clothing of the Maple tree.
Come Spring the Maple will drape itself, once more, in russet leaves and shade me from the open sky.
Check out the custom page for contributors.
I finally sat down and viewed the Anne Bagby DVD the other day, and wanted to share some of my impressions.
This was my first artist DVD, and I really had no idea what to expect. The DVD runs about 1-1/2hrs, probably half as long as a conference workshop.
Anne seemed rushed at first, but started to relax into the process after about 15 minutes. However, the project instructions were incomplete because of the time constraints placed on the DVDs running time.
I did, however, get the substance of Ms. Bagby's general approach to collage making, if not the finished product(s).
I found it intriguing how various artists, many of whom I admire, approach collage so differently. Having not long ago bought Ann Baldwin's collage book, it was remarkable to see where similarities and differences abound between these two Ann(e)s--in content and approach.
Ms. Bagby's technical approach is very inventive, more so than I imagined, or rather in ways I hadn't fathomed. If anything I would compare her inventiveness to Jonathan Talbot, and his classic adhesive methods. While the two artists' methods differ widely, they both accomplish similar goals--a smoother surface.
Jonathan mastered ways in which to adhere collage elements with medium, and has a terrific, book on the subject. His workshops are filled with all that he has learned--nothing spared. In 2-1/2 days, (not 1-1/2 hrs), I came away with a trunk full of ideas, and mastery of his technique.
I doubted that I would have the same experience from a DVD, but the cost of lodging, transportation and the time necessary for a workshop is often prohibitive--so a DVD purchase seemed an acceptable alternative.
Can I now modify Anne Bagby's approach to benefit my own collage work?
Her use of stencils, masks and rubber are truly utilitarian; the materials she uses accessible and affordable. Her vision is her own but the technical approaches she demonstrates can easily be incorporated into one's own work.
What I liked about Talbot's approach, and what I learned from Bagby, is how to more seamlessly integrate collage elements. Both approaches take preparatory time that some collage artists circumvent.
I've seen in my own work that the time I spend preparing materials gets me a better finished result. Having seen Anne Bagby's process, I may be able to use some of her techniques to streamline my own approach, an adaptation of my own.
Do I recommend the DVD?
Yes, if you are interested in building your collage technique repertoire and admire Ms. Bagby's work.
I bought it in a corner shop on the Place Vendome.
It was Easter week and I must have wanted to take some notes. I wasn't doing any visual journals then, but did keep an active written journal. Perhaps, in haste, I failed to pack a journal and picked this up so that I could jot down some thoughts.
After all this time it is only slightly discoloured and takes markers with barely any bleeding.
It has no identifying marks, or price on it. But perhaps it is still being sold in French shops.
And mysteriously it surfaced the other day in my file cabinet!
But now that I've rediscovered the packet, it is empty. I used the remaining 25 of 100 sheets practicing calligraphy.
Thanks to Something to Say, I had the privilege to see this documentary about Iowa, and hear the director, Danny Frazier, talk about his hopes, dreams and intention in making the film and sharing the photographs.
It is brilliant in its simplicity and enormity, simultaneously and richly evoking all the dreams, nightmares and reality of a disintegrating American landscape.
We lost the mills.
We lost manufacturing.
Each passing day another piece of the United States seems to disappear.
Sometimes the simplest journal prompt can be the most powerful. Elizabeth Bunsen mentioned her, "Manifest Journaling " technique recently and about a week later, I took two cut down watercolour papers, my odd but fun Holbein watercolour palette, ink and some Zig markers and made my own version of Elizabeth's prompt.
Without having just read, Journal Spilling, I may not have taken the plunge and done this prompt.
Since making the pages, I've put up a mini altar in my bedroom window where I light two candles to manifest the hidden but meaningful thoughts.
It is funny, entertaining, educational and chock full of great insight into journaling and the creative process.
It is a terrific spin-off from Ricë Freeman-Zachery's new book, "Creative Time and Space: Making Room for Making Art."
GraF It 90 G comes in four unique sizes, all of which are similarly bound and constructed with 41lb/90 g/m white paper. Each contains 80 sheets/160 pages.
I was watching a film about Georgia O'Keefe and Alfred Stieglitz when I drew the above in markers on the A5 size GraF It 90 G pad, remembering that Ms. O'Keefe had said, "I often painted fragments of things because it seemed to make my statement as well as or better than the whole could."
I must say Joan Allen, and not Georgia O'Keefe was in my sight whilst doodling.
On another night, with a sense of total abandon, I did a quick sketch, again with markers, that I think is more a homage to Barron Storey.
I like these sketch pads, their white brightness, the fact that they tear off easily and have a binding system that can be easily folded back on itself. The one draw back I see with these pads is that they tend to furl but a little weight on them flattens them out again.
Thus far I've only used the two smaller pads, but when my art space is cleaner, and my hands ready on the helm, I'll be using the two larger pads with great frequency. They are perfect for quick sketches, doodles and ideal for just letting loose with creative ideas.
All writing instruments worked well on the sketch pads, but they don't take to wet medium.
For resources check the Exaclair site.
Quick reference for paper sizes and their equivalents.
I thought I'd leisurely read Journal Spilling at Callicoon's new cafe, drinking coffee and taking in the last rays of sun, instead what I wanted to do was follow along with Diana and spill all over my journal(s).
The book is written in a refreshing, engaging and experienced voice--the voice of Diana Trout. “Free expression” exercises, the book’s subtitle, are skillfully woven throughout the book putting the reader, and journal maker at ease.
It is a book that motivates both the long-term journal keepers, like myself, and the novice, to set up and gather a few supplies and tools, anywhere, and just do it in its opening chapter, Warming Up. In fact, it fosters just what the title suggests, a way in which to create an organic, self defined journal just spilling onto a page from a box of crayons, a watercolour palette or a bottle of ink.
Judgment free, the chapters build on each other, and erase the terror often associated with trying to achieve the perfect page with precious materials. Instead, the Censor takes back stage while the Creator relaxes, explores and produces a seemingly effortless personal journal page(s). The book's chapter, "Taming the Critic" does some of the work, but it is the book in its entirety that grants the reader total permission to move beyond that "do not trespass" sign artists often experience.
At midpoint in reading the book, I found myself, “spilling” here, there and in my “Artistic Attempts “ journal—an altered calendar resurfaced with gesso.
The fact that I was able to venture so freely and spontaneously into a journal spill is testament to the writer’s skill and the books value. Too often, I weigh myself down with pensive pondering and few art pages.
I am not Picasso ©
My Censor and cacophony of Critics are shrill, but with Journal Spilling at my side and Diana’s voice in my head, perhaps I might yet capture that sense of freedom that arrives when we allow ourselves to just create.
Just Do It ©You can get your copy of Journal Spilling from Diana directly with a bonus collage pack.
Treat yourself to this terrific book!
A conference had been organised on the East Coast, a rarity, and those of us who had often missed out on the plethora of West Coast opportunities, were so excited we came out in droves.
The one workshop I was keen to take was with Linda & Opie O'Brien. I loved that workshop and have 7 of Vine hanging in my kitchen.
But what I remember most about my rare attendance at workshops and this ArtiologyWorkshop is meeting Diana Trout.
Diana had come with some of her Philadelphia friends, two of whom I knew from several on line art groups. Yet for reasons inexplicable, we gravitated to each other in a quiet way that has been sustained with telephone calls, and an exchange of submissions to our now defunct, but then respective zines.Now Diana Trout has come out with an amazing new book, Journal Spilling, Mixed Media Techniques for Free Expression.
Journal Spilling is terrific!
(To be continued)
These are troubling times for the poor, the rich, the needy, the healthy and those suffering from ill health.
When in dire straits, art is often among the first items sold while art programs are often the first to be discontinued.
What with various widths, colours, price, performance and ease of use, price, availability and even familiarity--not all markers are equal and personal preferences prevail.
After evaluating the shelf life of my markers, and in anticipation of learning and doing marker calligraphy, I decided to test out all the markers I have on hand. All of the written tests were done before taking on that Calligra-FUN class.
Staedtler Pigment Liner; Penstix permanent EF; Penstix 0.7mm; Slicci 0.4;
Hi-tec-C, 0.4mm; Uniball Vision Fine
The Niji marker (below) now known and sold as a Yasutomo Y&C Stylist pen can be found at art suppliers and craft shops. It is a single end marker. The body of the marker is narrower than some markers and has a non-flexible nib. It appears to come in about 8 colours and sells for $1.29. It is good for drawing and fast doodling.
Tombow; Galaxy; Niji Stylist; Marvey Artwin; Mars Staedtler Graphics 300; Fabrico
Itoya Double Header; Letraset; Marvy Single 55; Pentel Metallic Brush Tip:
Faber Castell Pitt Artist Pen; Micron .5
(*Dick Blick states the markers are 1.7mm not 1.5mm; perhaps they have changed the width since I bought mine.)
Sanford Unique (M); Pentel Hybrid; Sigma Pigment Brush BR99; Kuretake XF (Disposable); Kuretake F (Disposable); Sanford Liquid Expresso EF; Zig Memory
Pilot V-Ball XF; Uniball Vision Elite; Staedtler Triplus Fine Liner; Copic Multliner 0.3mm; Copic Multiliner 0.8mm; Sakura Gelly; Copic Multiliner 1.0; Copic Multiliner .005; 0.01
Of note, fountain pen trials exhibited no feathering, bleeding or see through--a most remarkable Moleskine, needless to say!
After writing this up, I discovered here at Dawn DeVries Sokol's blog, another test of markers.
Glaser, in this short video, makes some compelling statements about drawing. One of which resonates not only with the act of drawing, but the act of writing. I think there really is a mind-body synergy, and that synergy played out with the motion of the hand differs from the clicking of the keyboard--perhaps emanating from a different part of the brain.
Glaser has a new book, entitled, "Drawing is Thinking" which he refers to in the video.
The New York Times review, however, is testy and tentative with praise, and suggests it is over packed with light weight literary and historical luggage. The only redeeming remark in the review is the suggestion the book is reminiscent of Middlemarch. If it is, I shall devour it gladly.
One of my favourite films, watched on my wee 15" Mac, now gone, was Gosford Park, not so much for the film itself, but for the brilliant post-production interview with Julian Fellowes, a man so well versed in class, one wonders why he hasn't chosen to write a non-fiction account.
Fellowes new book, "Past Imperfect" sounds like a juicy weekend thriller suggestive of those chatty and most catty remarks exchanged on many of my Channel Crossings by 'umble coat attendants as the ferry moved away from the Continent towards England and home. I always came away bemused, and amused by their sharp anti-Continent tongue, often sharper than their eye, as I was no Brit but rather an American with a large capacity for mimicry.
The book appears to be a combination of mystery, intrigue, friendship and place. And although the review makes me want to read this book, immediately, it is Tracy Quan's remark, "being liberated from class identity means being, in some sense, homeless" that alerted me that the book undoubtedly has considerable substance and might require more than a blink to absorb.
Karen Armstrong's new book, "The Case for God " struck gold with me when I heard the author interviewed on NPR. Sane, logical and grounded in history, the book could change some people's religious life as the former nun strikes the right cord about living a moral life, not eating the bible.
I was in wonder when I realised that the wetness on the ground, falling from the sky, was not rain, but our first snow.
It is light, but persistent.
I had an afterthought. Today is Blog Action Day, a once a year event, and this year focused on Global Climate Change.
What better day to recount how this day, with snow, differs so palpably from the October, two years ago, when I moved to the Upper Delaware Valley.
That month, two years ago, the sun was shining. One of the first things done to improve the house was washing all the indoor porch windows. Even with 8 windows wide open, the house remained warm from the bright sun, and the drops of water from cleaning dried quickly.
The entire month was glorious. Preparing for the delivery of my household goods, too long in storage, were pleasant, soothing and productive. I had plans for a rain barrel garden, and wandered across the large property line admiring flowers, herbs and weeds.
I had no need to turn on the furnace. I had no reason to switch on the few overhead lights to read.
It was a perfect Autumn.
Two years later the house is cold, dark, somewhat dank, and while I keep the furnace set below 60 much of the time, today it seems I may have to raise the bar and move the dial up.
My second winter was hellacious. Several times I had to fight my way out from one of 4 exits with all my strength to topple the mounds of packed snow. On two occasions I had to send an SOS to a neighbour to get me out of blocked door(s) frozen by snow turned to ice. I learned that if I wanted out, I had to put on my boots, and get to the doors quickly and frequently shovel the accumulations or face more days of entrapment.
The Farmer's Almanack has declared that this Winter will be very bad.
I can barely image a Winter worse than I experienced last year.
Is this climate change?
While others take a different view, I concur with the Committee Chair when he said, quoted here
"He got the prize because he has been able to change the international climate," Nobel Committee chairman Thorbjoern Jagland said. "Some people say, and I understand it, isn't it premature? Too early? Well, I'd say then that it could be too late to respond three years from now. It is now that we have the opportunity to respond — all of us."
What a delight and what cause for remembrance is Christopher Hitchens review of Kazuo Ishiguro's short stories, "Noctures."
Why delight? What memory?
I was in high school--a boring experiment in educating the masses, me-thought, and so, I couldn't wait for the bigger, brighter sunbeams that streamed outside my window like university and life. Instead of waiting out the final chapter, I rushed headlong into summer school, a way to shorten the sacrifices of arriving at five minutes before eight (7.55am) each morning and sitting in crowded classrooms.
With these abbreviated summer courses we had the same curriculum, but only 4 weeks to accomplish what regularly scheduled classes would cover in approximately 4 months, and so I sought equally foolproof short cuts.
In order to get that treasured "A" with a big capital letter, I read the New York Times Book Review as if it had biblical implications, using its format and fervor to write my essays for my Advanced English class. I frolicked around unpronounceable and little used words and sprinkled them judiciously throughout my writing, somewhat like this review by the formidable Mr. Hitchens.
I got my "A" and as a bonus, I admirably got a perfect score in the vocabulary section of that year's hated and heated compulsory English Regents.
In the end, it may best to avoid reading Mr. Ishiguro's short stories and instead treasure this unflattering review. After all, a review that can encompass Whistler, Hegel, Debussy and mythology in poetic English is worth savouring more than once.
In the end, we both came away with multiple post-its for Ms. Bagby's work.
What I liked about the work was its dimensionality; depth; suggestions of more--a mystery to unfold; the frequent simple, but evocative compositions; and her originality. She makes her own paper, stamps and stencils.
Recently, The Artists Magazine offered a glimpse into Anne Bagby's work and perhaps mentioned a DVD.
What I did know is that Creative Catalyst Productions offered many artists work on DVD.
After staring at the DVD, watching a clip, and reading about another artist's excitement after working with the DVD, I finally pushed the "buy it now" button.
It arrived in today's post-holiday mail.
I am excited but hesitate to watch it. I don't want to be disappointed in this purchase.
The Red Book, Jung's unpublished journal of journals is to be published this Fall, and is examined here, not minutely, but with a degree of flourish and a strong dash of thoroughness.
Having read nearly all that Jung wrote, cherished his Memories, Dreams and Reflections, a gift from a colleague, analyzed a dream for one year and paid my dues to two Jungian Institutes, I acknowledge that I felt a smile break out on my face as I read the article. The knowing that Carl Gustav Jung's self-analysis has left its Zurich vault, been translated into English and will be presented to the Dreamers is what I would call a most special gift.
The Rubin Museum of Art will host the unveiling of the original book on October 7 in New York, and be on view until January 25, 2010--sufficient time to make a pilgrimage.
I feel particular vulnerable these days with a family member just moved today to hospice, and the rapidly changing colours of summer to autumn.
But added to my personal feelings of vulnerabilities, I feel the chill in the air too reminiscent of those 60s winds talked of here.
Beast Books at The Daily Beast brings together some good reads on Dan Brown's already blockbuster new novel, "The Lost Symbols." The Washington Post's review is particularly amusing.
Laura Miller's review in Salon is nearly blistering.
Maureen Dowd's overview is among the best of those I've read thus far, here.
Have I pre-ordered? Nay!
But like his two earlier novels, I'll read it with the same fascination I read most thrillers.
Cecil Touchon, collage and abstract artist, has started a new art program for primary school students.
If you are a collage artist, Cecil's name may be familiar to you, but if not, do check out his work, the projects he organises and this new program for children.
The new program could use some supplies, and if you have any extras, a goodie bag would be welcomed at:
Collage Museum Supplies
C/O Sycamore Elementary School
1601 Country Manor Rd
Fort Worth, TX 76134-3629
A new site to me, and filled with some interesting discoveries.
The site popped up when I was looking for more information about the Ackerman Pump Pen.
The pens are sold here.
It took me nearly a year to get up the courage to get out a tape dispenser, pull a length off the roll, lay the tape down on my Lamy Safari Red fountain pen and whip off the 1.5 nib that I just think is too wide for daily writer.
It was so simple and painless!