Tag

Tarps Picadas

Hare Today

By | Exhibitions, My Artist Home, Tarpage

I was just explaining to my friend Peggy Jo how I’m a sprinter. Whether I’m running or swimming, setting up a new home or making art, I do it really, really fast — and then I take a break. I am not a marathoner. I can’t sustain energetic output endlessly. If I were one of the two characters in the tale of “The Tortoise & The Hare” I would definitely be the hare.

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(Sleeping Hare by Celia Hart)

Something about being a sprinter makes it difficult for me to run multiple races. I need to pick one race — move into my new home — and not add on another race — get ready for my exhibition in December — until the first race is won.

The last room/sprint to finish in our new house was the big studio where Mike paints and I work on my tarpestries…

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Race won.

Now I’ve begun to sprint towards my solo show in December at the Boise State University Student Union Gallery. The show will be of my tarpestries and I will have a variety of sizes including itty-bitty tarpestries.

Tarpitos?

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Unlike my big pieces these have no particular narrative, they’re just pure pattern. So far I’ve done 14…

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Whew! Time for a break. I’m out of breath!

Maybe another interpretation of the tale of “The Tortoise & The Hare” is that they both won the race — it’s just that the tortoise was a marathoner, and the hare was running a sprint.

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Instagram Woo Hoooo!

By | New Orleans Sojourn

You’ll have to forgive me if I seem over-the-top excited about this — though I’m guessing you’ll understand when I tell you today I woke up to THIS on my Instagram feed:

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Ok, sorry if I’m yelling, but OMG!! That’s MY tarp picada “Tree Houses of the Rising Sun” in front of Rebecca Rebouche’s Beauty Shop atelier!!!

Did you catch the number of likes!? And just look at what she had to say about it:

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Yep. I’m excited.

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Big Easily Distracted

By | New Orleans Sojourn

And the distractions just keep coming!

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We went to see John Boutte sing in a free concert at the Louisina Music Factory in the Marigny — I even got to shake his hand. John sings the opening song for the HBO series “Treme” — a series I highly recommend, about New Orleans in the months and years right after Katrina. Many of the “actors” like John Boutte are actually New Orleans musicians who play themselves, while other characters are played by actors from New Orleans, like Wendell Pierce who plays Antoine Batiste. Turns out Pierce, like Mike and myself, graduated from NOCCA.

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For us, New Orleans is a lot like Boise with its “one degree of separation.” In fact my friend Marilyn Z-B (my best friend at NOCCA) was sitting just inches away from me in our tiny Pied a Terre telling me how she and two others had done beading for many of the Indian costumes on Treme. Knock me over with a feather.

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I have been putting time into updating my website — all my portfolio pages for Public Art, Surface Pattern Design, and Exhibitions now have my most recent work, and I’ve been showing my tarps to everybody I know who might have ideas for how and where in New Orleans I might exhibit them.

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I’ve gotten nothing but positive responses — accompanied by consternation over where I might show them. Their size is a problem, unless you’re talking about museums, and if you’re talking museums then you are also talking about a depth of oeuvre which I have yet to achieve with the tarps alone. I need more time, more inventory. Four tarps do not a museum exhibiton make — at least not a solo exhibition.

There is consensus however that the tarps are knock-outs and — this is important — that they must be seen in person to be fully appreciated. I’m caught in a Catch-22 though, because in order to get the tarps seen by the people who are in a position to actually exhibit them I need the cred that comes with having shown them. It was ever so.

To illustrate my problem: the museum which has been mentioned every time as a good fit for the tarps is The Ogden Museum of Southern Art. We went to their Thursday night museum after hours event and toured the current exhibits while listening to a live musical perfomance. I was especially taken with the Outsider, Self-taught, Visionary exhibition, and these pieces by David Butler:

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My tarps definitely share the Outsider aesthetic, even if I don’t personally share the Outsider Artist diagnosis. I guess that makes me an Outsider outsider!

C’est la vie I guess. Well I’m not going to let a little Catch-22 stand in the way of my bon temps. Not in this town with so many wonderful distractions!

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(Check out more of Eric Water’s photography of New Orleans Second Line here.)

Just Doing That, Not This

By | Everything Else

When I started this blog I had the idea that I would be able to do frequent, if not daily, posts. Some wordy, some mostly pictures, but all dependably shared. Often.

Shhiiiiiit. There’s just no way.

This year I’m thinking if I can average one post a week I’ll be doing magnificently.

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Worrying about this has peaked my interest in the process of procrastination. So, while I’ve been putting off writing my next post I’ve spent many delightful hours reading about the art of putting things off. On-line.

No irony there.

I’m not talking about putting off paying the Electric bill or going to the dentist. I’m talking about putting off that thing that you have defined as “What I Do.” For me that’s making art. And, doing a blog that’s sort of about making art.

All in all I no longer think of procrastination as being “bad.” Like boredom, it has its up-side. Where boredom can create the space for creativity to emerge, procrastination can allow for the time it takes for an idea to mature or evolve into something better.

The trick is to manage your procrastination. First, you have to maintain your awareness of the big picture — the dates of deadlines, the amount of real time you think it will take to complete your project (always multiply by 4, that way you can be pleasantly surprised if it only takes twice as long), your personal skill-set vs. your need for others’ assistance. Then, you have to learn to stop wasting time worrying about putting the project off until later. Let that mother go!

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If you can do those things, then one of two things will happen. Either, by your own action or inaction, you will get it done. Or, you will move on to something new and never look back. QED.

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I guess I’m starting to think of procrastination as a very useful filter for determining what I will be spending my time “just doing” vs. what will end up on my “Fuck-it List.”

This might help: pay attention to what distracts you. What are you doing instead of that project you are putting off? The things which consistently distract me are generally the things I really want to be doing. And the things I really want to be doing often lead to projects better suited for me, and often to better outcomes for those projects I do finish.

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Whew!! Now that I’ve finished doing this, I can go back to doing that!

New Habit

By | Everything Else

I’m still getting used to being my own boss. I’ve mostly managed to stay out of my own way, which is important since I’m not fond of being told what to do. I do have certain expectations about how much attention I pay to the whole “making art” thang but I purposely don’t have specific “numbers” associated with my production — no number of pieces by a particular date, or amount of money I need to earn. It’s still numbers that come to mind though when I evaluate how I’m doing. That’s something I want to change. Sometimes old habits can really kick your ass, and new habits take longer than you think to instill.

Since the New Year I’ve been very productive. I’ve not felt pressured so my process has been relaxed, and even though I have put in lots of hours it hasn’t felt like work. It’s been FUN. More than fun, it’s been that satisfying “all is right with my world” feeling at the end of the day. THAT feeling is how I want to “evaluate how I’m doing.” If I can continue to feel that way then I must be a damn fine boss, right? I’ll keep you posted.

So far I’ve finished a big new Pom Pow blanket, “Clown Daddy”…

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Also my second Treefort tarp, formerly known as “Winter Trees’ Dreams of Spring”…

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now has a Second Life as “The Unconscious Arsonist” (details)….

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TVAA has a juried exhibtion, “Menagerie,” coming up and I did a brand new tarp for it titled “Sss(mmm)sss…”….

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It’s big, 10 feet by 3 1/2 feet, so here it is in sections:

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I’ve been spending a lot of time lately thinking about looking at life from new angles — choosing different perspectives from our usual choices in a way that gets us out of our ruts. I don’t think we should waste our time feeling pressured to do things just so we can say we did. I do think we should DO the things we can’t stop thinking about (the life enhancing, won’t hurt anybody including you, things) in spite of the naysayers. And I think sometimes it helps to actively choose your new perspective.

Well, I’ve put making art that only stresses me out on my Fuck-it List, I’m Just Doing the kind of art that I can’t wait to get out of my head and into the world, and I make sure I get at least a couple of hours of play done every day in my studio.

I’m making a choice: instead of letting my old habits kick me in the ass, I’m going to make it my new habit to kick ass.

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Care to join me?