Sometimes the best place to start is the place you left off. I made a few mugs with similar handles a year or two ago, but revisited the forms for the sake of finding a little momentum. This is the start of a ‘dessert service’…it’s like a tea service, but for dessert. I think it will get a little tray to go with it. Can’t you imagine scoops of homemade ice cream, mini brownie a la modes, or servings of fresh fruit salads in these sweet tiny cups?
So, obviously I kinda took a bit of a break after the show went up. It’s funny how excited I can get about a show, and then how much I want to swear and curse the whole thing about 24 hours before it happens. My husband says I thrive on the stress (I totally deny it), but on the inside, I am starting to wonder if he is right. There is something about the deadline of time and creativity that makes you really, really productive. Anyway, things came together really well, and by the time time opening started, the show was up, title cards were in place, and my giant vinyl sign was hanging in the breeze outside. The outcome? A great opening for a terrific show!! I’ve included a few pictures for your viewing pleasure. My pieces are the cairns/stacking rocks on the shelf, and the large hanging ‘birth quilt’ of 10 cm circles sewn together. You can also admire the work of Aundrea Frahm (painter), Dorothy Wasserman (b&w photo collage), Laura Reynolds (mixed media collage), and Elizabeth Allen (ceramics…the egg like wall pieces). If I can ever figure out how to put captions onto the photos, I’ll do it. I’m still figuring out wordpress. Oh, and just for the record, I hung a lot of this show with my baby strapped onto my back. I think I should become an official Beco baby carrier spokesperson.
Recently I’ve been reading this great book by Lisa Bloom entitled, “Think: Straight Talk for Women to Stay Smart in a Dumbed-Down World”. Each page leaves me dumbfounded at things I never knew about the world–like how eating beef contributes more to global warming than any other single factor (like driving, wasting electricity, etc) or how 3 million women are enslaved in sex trafficking. I am in awe as I keep learning all the things that don’t show up on Google News or NPR (or maybe I just haven’t been listening to enough NPR lately). Anyway, I feel like the past week I’ve been left contemplating ‘heavy’ things. The more I read about the extreme poverty that one billion people live in, the stranger it feels to go grocery shopping or do laundry, you know?
So once again I’ve revisited that thought of, “really? There are starving people out there, and I am going to spend the next hour making…art?” Thankfully, that thought doesn’t dominate my mind very long any more, although I remember struggling as a teenager when I first fell in love with art. I wanted to know how it was ‘okay’ for me to devote a life to art when I could devote a life to being an advocate for the poor, a physician for the sick, a voice for the silenced. I read and thought and prayed about it for, well, years.
Eventually I realized that these things were not mutually exclusive; being an artist doesn’t mean that I can’t be involved human rights. I also realized that more important that what you DO is who you ARE. And more than anything, I felt a divine voice encouraging me and whispering over and over, “keep going! Be an artist! You can do it and make a difference in the world in the process!”
Now I have the combo of stay-at-home-mom added on top of that, and somehow making a difference in the world seems a lot harder when you can’t even get showered and dressed before noon. I feed my daughter at dinner and can’t help but think, what can I do with the resources around me to help the other mothers who have nothing to feed their children? I hop online to check my email and I wonder, what can I do personally to contribute to advancing education among women in developing countries?
And how can I do it through art?
I don’t feel frustrated by the thought, just challenged.
So I’ll start by using the resources around me and ask: How would you do it?