Empty Studio

New things must be coming in the studio, because it’s pretty empty right now.  I actually can’t stand the sight of it.  However, it just means that most of my current work is out in the real world getting looked at, and that is so gratifying.  I make all of these things in the comfort control room that is my studio. I am making it mostly for myself, to challenge my ideas, to see if I can make something from nothing, to carry out an idea on a theme.  Now, I’ve allowed it to leave my little bubble and be out among all the other viewers, purveyors of art.  I’m excited for these opportunities, and of course it’s great to have shows and exhibits to get a feel for how one’s work is perceived.  Next week, I’ll have the opportunity to go to that exhibit, talk a little about why and how I made those pieces and field questions about what people get out of what they’re looking at.  It’s scary and wonderful all at the same time.

But in the meantime, I haven’t had much time inside the studio this week. Between being back at my day job and dropping of my work for the exhibit, there has been very little time for making.  Next week, should balance out and I’ll be back in, completing some pieces and taking the leap to start another series (I hope).  The empty studio makes me think about possibilities!

But here are a few shots of this week, just to give you some perspective:

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New Threads hang off the edge of a piece.  Almost complete.
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Threads and floor.
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Time to fill the wall again!
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New piece, ready to be shown! (Ohio, Mississippi confluence)
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Where I unpacked all my pieces for a beautiful space in Falls Church, can’t wait to visit my pieces next week.
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Unpacking started, the big one (A Confluence) is rolled up on the floor.
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Picked up the painting in this exhibition catalogue this week.  What a great opportunity to be a part of the Maryland Regional Juried Art Exhibition.
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A new piece, and maybe a new series.  This one is being donated to the Workhouse. Hope to explore this more in 2017.

Happy NEW Year!

It’s been a while since I have updated the blog. I was busy working on the large painting  (11 feet by 6 feet), I put together work for a show that opens this week, and made time to visit family and friends over the winter break.   Well, it’s time to hit the ground running again and I couldn’t be more excited to share a few more show dates that will be featuring my work locally.

The first show, opens this week!  I just dropped off 20 pieces over at Crossroads Gallery at Goodwin House, where it is being curated as we speak.  This show will also feature work by another local artist from the Workhouse.  Our pieces create a nice dialogue, and is titled “Pathways”.  I’m really excited and can’t wait to present the work and talk about it on January 15, 2017.

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The next show that is coming up is also a group show at the Workhouse.  Our building has decided to put on a group show, where each one of the artists will have a piece on view.  The title of this show is “Winter Chill”.  Come for the reception on second Saturday January 14, 2016.

In the mean time, I need to fill up my studio again.  It seems so empty without all my work there, so stop by and visit me on Wednesdays and Fridays.  I hope to be there some Saturdays too.

Happy new year to all, wish you health and happiness.

 

Studio time on a Saturday

It was kind of quiet at the Workhouse today.  While people were streaming in and out of our building I decided to do some much needed work on the big wall canvas I’ve been working on for the past few months. YES- I said “few months”.  I love this project and it’s been a lot of fun to create the layers and watch this huge blank canvas transform into this confluence of layers, lines and shapes.

I made a little recording of the part I was working on today! The painting is almost complete, and then it’s time to put all that effort into drawing.  I’m hoping that this piece will be ready for a debut in January!  Keep coming back and hopefully I’ll have more details soon.

Happy Thanksgiving!

I’m going to take a little break from the studio this week.  I’m going off to spend some time eating some good homemade food and enjoying company with friends and family.  There is a lot have gratitude for this year, even though it’s been a roller coaster of a year.    I hope everyone out there takes time to be with the ones they care about, take some time to reflect and refresh!

I’m adding a few Saturdays to my studio schedule during the holidays, so I hope to see you out and about and visiting the Workhouse Art Center in Lorton, VA. Continue to look for exhibition dates and schedule changes here.  I try to post new dates and updates to my schedule regularly.  It’s going to be a full year in 2017 and I hope you’ll be a part of the festivities.

This video was captured a couple of weeks ago when I was working on adding lines to “the wall” (title pending).  I’m hoping to complete this work by the new year in hopes of showing it at the Goodwin House Gallery in January.  It’s going to take much more time, and many more acrylic paint markers.

Wishing you all a Happy Thanksgiving!

New waves in the studio

As you know I’ve been working on a lot of new things this fall.  It all began with “the wall” but I also ended up experimenting with some new themes in my work.  Don’t get me wrong, I’m still a fan of maps.  But – I inherited about 40 years worth of magazines that have really great pictures.  My intention is to play around with them, and alter them to see how I can use them in my artwork as another collage material.

I have to admit, sometimes I get distracted.  In fact, when I go to my studio space, I have good intentions of organizing my time wisely, but sometimes I just I have so many ideas running through my head that I wish I could somehow have more hands, more energy, and more time to work on them.

In these past few weeks, though, I’ve started filming my progress on the wall painting.  I actually completed the collage and am working on the writing.  The painting part is still in progress.  I actually ran out of the colors I was using, and I have to re-order them — local stores don’t carry my strange mix of colors.

So here are some current visual updates:

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Before Halloween I was working on finishing the collage.  This shows that I had to finish across the top and along the side.  It was hours of work to complete that part.
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A view from my comfy chair.
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Backyard art experimenting.  I was using a cleaning agent to alter pictures in a magazine. 
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You don’t really know what is going to happen, but sometimes things happen just right.
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Waiting to be painted.  I think the painting part will finish up right after Thanksgiving.
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Collage work finished! — So I had some snacks.
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New experimental mixed media pieces.  What if I used faces, instead of maps?
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Still enjoying the topographical line making on top of the altered images and paint.
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Did I mention I started making my own origami paper?
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First crane in this bunch. Only 999 more to go.

 

Check it out!!

Three of my little guys will be in a show this month.  Check it out:

Nov. 10 – Dec. 4
Meet the Artists Opening, 7:00 pm, Thursday, Nov. 10
ArtSpace Falls Church
410 S. Maple Avenue
Falls Church, VA

Go check it out!

For your viewing pleasure: Artist at Work

I finally found my tripod.  So I decided to film a time-lapse video of me working in my studio.  I’m actually completely done with the collage portion of this GIGANTIC mixed media painting.  I can’t wait to work on the other parts of it.

This video is about half hour of work collapsed into about two and a half minutes.  I’m so glad I didn’t fall off the ladder.  At least you can see the scale of the work and actually how big the piece is.

An over due update

The wall has been going through some changes these last few weeks.  There’s been some problem solving, much needed breaks, and some breakthroughs.  I’m really having fun with this project and the idea has taken on a different kind of significance and study.  I feel like it’s moving forward.

So with the much needed breaks I’ve also been working on a few other paintings to keep it interesting.  I’ve ordered more wood to keep going on a series of smaller abstractions and of course wood panels.

 

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The collage work, it’s never ending, but so worth the effort.
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I need breaks, so I’m working on a couple of others.  This is one is one masonite board, and has a super slick surface.
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Oh, and I’m working on some origami paper, using maps as a guide to make the lines on the paper.
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Folding them into cranes.  This has been a long process, but I finally found the right paper and the right ink.
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The wall, as it shifts.
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Back to making origami paper.
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Sometimes you need a walk in the woods to reset.  And I still can’t get away from the impressions of nature.
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More map design on paper.
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Pre-treating the birch panels for the next project.
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Close up of collage.
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This is how it looked earlier in the week, you can see the small red piece in the foreground.
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Still shape shifting the collage.
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Decided to add lines.  It’s going to take some time, but I’m happy with it so far.
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Potomac River Basin in progress.
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More shifting, more color, more lines.  Nowhere near completion.

 

 

 

 

Great News

So excited that my art made it into another water show.  This will be my second water – themed exhibit and I couldn’t be more happier.  We all have a connection to water and it’s important that galleries and curators choose themes such as this to highlight important issues.  People always come into my studio and ask,” Why water?”  It’s a great question, and one that can be answered a million different ways.  For me, I feel that my art brings together two very simple issues.  How humans have developed civilizations next to water bodies and how we connect to them.  I didn’t always put objects or something recognizable in my artwork, but I do now.  I choose rivers, mostly, because they are abstract to us.  We don’t necessarily see what they look like from above, or the shape of them.  Most of the time, we see the piece of the river that is right next to us.  I like to look from a different view point, above, away. To capture more of the river, to capture the shape that most maps capture. Only then can we see it wind, twist, turn and become other water bodies, such as tributaries, creeks, and runs.

To see the next group show called H2O Waterworks, come to Alexandria Virginia to the Del Ray Artisan’s Gallery. I’m sure it’s going to be a great show.  It goes up November 4th!

Here is a link to the show and you can also check my current schedule for more details.

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Congo, 36″ x 12″, mixed media
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Zambezi (2016), 12″x36″, mixed media

 

The wall and chitta vritti

It’s been one of those weeks where I have been completely distracted in general.  I can’t seem to focus on one thing at a time.  I start doing something, and then my mind leads me elsewhere.  I guess that is one of the reasons I’ve been back at making script patterns again.  It’s like meditation.  I’m focused on my hand moving and making lines, they swoop they twirl, they split.  It’s a great practice for my brain that seems to want to hang on to the noise.  In yoga we call that the chitta vritti — or monkey mind.  Even so, I’ve made some progress on the wall, among other things.  But as promised, I do have a few pictures for you.

I’ve also spent a fair amount of time in my other jobs this week.  I also work part-time, teaching art at a local school, and I do some consulting work for NalandaWay (a Chennai- based arts non profit, where I was for the Fulbright).  It can be quite a hectic week.  So my studio can sometimes be the place where I do focus in, I do find a sense of calm, and I do get down to work.

This coming week will be much of the same– work on the wall, work on some secret art stuff at home, teach, and consult.  I have to say, though. I do like this cycle.  It’s like having the best of all worlds.

So in the meantime, check below for where I am on the wall this week.

 

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Progress so far. The collage is starting to go on top of the larger shapes.  Thinking of other things to do, as this progresses.
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A close up. All the map pieces come from one atlas. I think I’ll have to use only one atlas.
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To hinder the monkey mind, I also shut my door and made a make-shift curtain. Next week, I’ll be wide open.  I don’t like shutting out on-lookers and do love to chat with the patrons that come by.  Sorry to have missed you, if you came around!