“So, I think at the end, I am at odds with the whole system. I am more like an artist; I have the feeling where you need to go. It’s like water. You don’t have a plan, but you have this energy. You have this sensitivity and urge to do something. So, you’ve got to flow from a high place. The willingness is there. The dynamics are there. The energy’s there. Then when you go, you have hindrance, but you just turn the corner and you go somewhere else and then you float right back to where you need to go, but you always go to the low places, where people need water, where people need nourishment. But, then, suddenly, you have to build that dyke just the way they specify. So, I am feeling that the system is changing me rather than support the vision and the sensibility that I have to make a successful organization continue to emerge as the organic village emerges.” From Grace and Fear, Chapter 2: Lily Yeh, Cleveland and Shifferd.
Welcome! This site is still under construction. I am in the process of moving my blog here from http://cloudfactory.wordpress.com.
The 25+ person Thanksgiving meal at work is this Tuesday. This is how I wrap my brain around how to fit everything in the ovens.
I’m getting excited!
Some new works made in the last month or so:
Finally did another version of the stone/eggs on ladders, which has been living inside my head haunting me for months. I want to play with this concept more.
Another one similar to “Stones” and “Stone Dry.” I feel like I put in too many “holes” this time, but I guess it was an experiment in how far I could take that concept. It’s fascinating to me how precise placement of the forms can affect whether I read humanlike qualities in these. For example, I see these as having less personality somehow because there are so many “holes” that I no longer read them as little creatures (as opposed to “stones” for example, which I think is very facelike). However, I have talked to other people who didn’t see that in my work at all in the first place. I love that ambiguity. Maybe they are stones, or eggs, or just pure abstract things. I also like trying to look at them as if looking at something from bird’s eye view to see if I can see landforms in them.
And another one to go along with the “seedlings” series, this one bigger (all three of these new ones are 16×20″)
Fall has been really, really busy. This week was the last of the ten “Work of Art” workshops from Springboard (I’m sad and will miss everyone!). But my Springboard Tuesdays are not over yet! The next two weeks I will be taking a workshop on working with community taught by Jun-Li Wang. And I am taking graphic design on Saturdays at MCTC and have been designing a call for entries for a WARM members show coming up in March at the Grainbelt Bottling House. WARM is also hosting a screening next week of “Who Does She Think She Is?” a documentary about women artists who insist that you can be both a mother and an artist. I am very excited to see it and discuss with fellow artists.
I am trying to get my Etsy shop up and running, but never having time to make business calls during the day while I’m at work has prevented me so far from calling to get my MN tax ID # so that I can collect state sales tax. I might have to work Sunday (bleh) and have Monday off (phew) so maybe I can finally get around to doing that. And I’m on twitter now! Trying not to let it take over my whole life, hah.
Here are some photos from my trip to the Boundary Waters Canoe Wilderness Area in September with my mom and dad, followed by pictures of some other things around here that have been inspiring me lately:
We came very close to running into a deer the morning we drove out of the Boundary Waters toward Madison. It was really misty and we were lucky (and/or the deer was lucky) that we just barely missed it. We also think we saw a wolf along the side of the road; we had just been talking about how we didn’t get to see a moose so when we saw this figure through the morning fog my mom called out “it’s a moose!” As I leaned forward and squinted I was thinking to myself, that must be a REALLY small moose. A baby moose? Haha! And it turned out it was either a wolf, or someone’s Husky dog, just trotting along the side of the road. We also went to Madison and Ohio to visit friends and family. All those photos were on Dad’s camera though. It was a good visit with Grandma & Popi, aunts, uncles, and cousins. My grandparents recently celebrated their 71st wedding anniversary and broke a record at the Fairfield County Fair as the longest-married couple ever to be honored on their senior citizens day/event. It’s pretty amazing to think of all the things they’ve seen in their lifetime. They have lived all over the country while working for the park service, and eventually moved back to Ohio where my parents grew up. They turned 92 this past summer, and are both still going pretty strong! They have always been a testament to me that it is important to stay active, love your family and your community in order to stay healthy in older age. I hope Alex and I have as much vitality as they have when we have great grandchildren.
Fall is back with a bang! Well, maybe not a bang. But it has been busy. I am taking graphic design on saturdays at MCTC, and my Springboard Artist Development Project workshops just started up again, and I’ve been applying to a few shows and fellowships. I’m also catching up on all those icky adult-things that you have to do sometimes when you are a “grown-up”: doctor’s appointments, dentist appointments, getting the tires rotated, getting a flu shot, etc. Blah. My husband returns from his sojourn to Finland in two or three weeks and I am anxious to have him home for a while.
I found the summer to be not very productive when it comes to actual art-making but I’ve gotten my butt back in gear and finished two paintings in the last two weeks, and started another one last night that is a larger continuation of the “Seedlings” series which I’m excited to continue working on. I am boycotting virtually all the tv shows which I usually fall into obsession with each autumn, and it’s helping me feel much more balanced and productive. Maybe the cooler weather is helping me along, too. I think the window AC is going to have to go in the bedroom instead of the living room next summer.
No new shows in the works quite yet, but the WARM exhibition committee is starting to work on the members show we will be having at the Grainbelt Bottling House atrium in March 2011. In the meantime, it’s application time! Lots of calls for entries are on the horizon so that’s what I’m working on. I’m excited to go to the closing reception at Groveland Gallery on Saturday after my class. My (former) Carleton professor Fred Hagstrom has a show there in the annex and is also part of the+1 Print Invitational.
Having a weekend with nothing much specific to do brings home the realization that the Minnesota Fringe Festival is over for another year, after plummeting straight from house managing last sunday to my regular full time job first thing Monday morning. I saw some amazing shows, 18 shows in 8 days in fact, and am not quite sure how I managed to cram all that into my brain. I didn’t see a single show that I felt was really bad, and only a couple that didn’t quite live up to the expectations I’d gotten from their high-kitty reviews. Here is my final list of what I saw, in the order that I saw it in, in case anyone is interested:
Underneath the Lintel was probably my favorite, though it’s hard to pick just one. Anyway, I was glad it was the last one I saw. A few years ago I saw a fringe show called “Methuselah’s Seed” and it was one of those weird, dark stories that not only entertains you but touches on something deeper, some sort of philosophical understanding. The year before that Live Action Set‘s “Please Don’t Blow Up Mister Boban” had a similar effect on me. Each year since then I’ve searched for the show that would get under my skin and inspire me in some unique way. This year, I would say Underneath the Lintel was the show that did that for me the most.
I was glad to hear he got a good audience for the last show and actually sold out one of them, maybe it was that last one as the show was building publicity gradually via word of mouth and excellent reviews through the week. It was an incredible performance and I would love to see it again if there is a remount. It was the kind of show I wanted to bring my parents to, or anyone else really! Just wanted to share it with whoever I could. I recommended it to a lot of people at the Fringe even before I’d seen it myself so I hope many others were as delighted by it as I was.
Fringe is one of the highlights of my summer, and now I begin looking t
owards summer’s end. My parents will be out here visiting in a couple of weeks for the state fair and some boundary waters camping, which will be a nice sendoff before fall begins. I have to say after record numbers of days over 90 and crazy humidity for a while there, and with growing longing for October when my husband returns from his forays in soccer in northern Finland, I don’t think I’ll be too disappointed for the season’s end. I hope I make it out to swim in the lake a few more times before it gets cold though.
I also finished my summer reading project, which was finishing the Harry Potter series (Iabandoned it after book 3 years ago, busy with college and not a huge fan of the writing style in the earlier books clearly aimed at a slightly younger audience). Unfortunately I found it kind of all-consuming and am going to try not to become completely engulfed in the next book I get my hands on. Terry Goodkind‘s Stone of Tears from the Sword of Truth series is already on hold for me at the library so we’ll see whether I can get into more healthy reading habits with that one 🙂 Not sure how successful I’ll be since Wizard’s First Rule had me in just as much suspense as Harry Potter. Maybe I need to start reading books that don’t have movies or TV series attached to them; if I don’t have as much of a visually emotional connection in my mind to the characters maybe the plot won’t take over my life so much. Though I can’t completely decide which is better: thinking about the plot of harry potter all day at work, or just obsessing about work drama. How about neither? let’s work on that….hmm…
The Minnesota Fringe Festival is upon us. I am working as a House manager, and for the beginning of the festival I’m only scheduled for short shifts at a BYOV (“bring your own venue”) show called
which is playing in the gallery at Fallout Arts Center. Which means I’ve had time to see lots of shows. 3 on Thursday, 2 on Friday, and 5 yesterday. And all of them have been extremely good! Not sure if the fringe is getting better, or if after volunteering or house managing for five years I’ve just gotten really good at picking the shows that I know I’ll love.
Here’s what I’ve seen so far, all ten on my “I recommend this!” list:
Do Not Kill Me, Killer Robots! my friend Ben Egerman (a fellow carleton grad) puts on an excellent one man show about being the last man alive after a killer robot invasion. it was awesome!!!
Aardvark Fandango excellent dancing by the ever brilliant John Munger and students from Zenon Dance Co.
Idiosynchronicity especially recommended for those who appreciate good geeky sci-fi humor
Batmama imagine a cabaret show put on by a woman who is a bat… hard to describe but very funny.
CSI: Ben McGinley excellent combo of physical acting, dance, storytelling, with multimedia video stuff. Funny and kind of heart-rending at the same time.
The Damn Audition a scrimshaw show, so of course it’s funny.
Ballad of the Pale Fisherman beautiful use of physical theater to tell a tale of the legend of the Selkie, a woman hidden inside the body of a seal who falls in love with a fisherman. I found the plot slightly predictable but it was still a very enjoyable show.
St. Christopher of Financial Aid this is a must see for anyone who has endured working at a phone bank, temping, and/or other customer service work. about a guy who gets a temp job answering phones for an all-online university. Christopher is an amazing, amazing actor who took my breath away with “Monster” in last year’s fringe and again shows his ability to play multiple characters in a one-man show with amazing dexterity.
Entwined Adorable, heartbreakingly funny story of falling in love with a guy who’s in love with someone else who is in a “lesbian phase,” and a trip to see the world’s largest ball of twine. I took a couple of springboard classes with Amy and I know she thinks of this as a work in progress, but I think she should give herself a little more credit! It was fabulous and I’m sure it will continue to improve as she works on it more. Great for those who will appreciate jokes about unitarian universalism, compost worms, and buffy the vampire slayer. Sarah I wish you weren’t out of town for this one, you would find it hilarious. hopefully she will remount it again in the future.
A Sad Carousel indescribable. hilarious. a few of the jokes seemed to be a little bit before my time but I still loved it. don’t go if you strongly dislike hearing the f-bomb. It didn’t quite sell out but was close, the 5:30 Monday time slot should be easier to get into than others.
I love how copying and pasting those from —>the fringe website<— seems to have kept their links to the shows’ pages intact!
So if you’re in the twin cities, go see some theater.
Other shows I recommend that I haven’t seen yet:
An Adult Evening of Shel Silverstein (has been selling out every night as far as I know, get in line early and don’t try to rush)
There’s this really nifty project going on this summer called Storefront in a Box, and the Art Swap from the Art Swap Shanty is returning next week to take over the ARISE bookstore for one week of awesome art swappiness. I hope I’m not to swamped with fringe to go swap some art 😉
My friend and fellow artist Angela sent me the message below advertising it, and I finally went and found my pictures from the Art Swap ice shanty. This is so cool:
Isn’t that cool? I love that some random person has my little art card. She looks nice, like the type of person who would like my stuff. Which, apparently, she does, or did. It’s kind of nice to remember good times in February after enduring a 90 degree day in August spent in a humid, hot kitchen.
Here’s the message from Angela with details:
Remember the ART SWAP Shanty that I was involved with this winter as
part of the Medicine Lake Art Ice Shanty project? Our shanty was a
tiny shack with a giant hat, complete with a giant pom. Underneath
the hat, 799 people arrived with their art, leaving it behind in our
gallery and taking someone else’s art home. All the swaps are
documented at iceartswap.com. It’s clear from people’s faces that
Swapping Art Improves Lives!
ART SWAP SHANTY heads into the city from Aug. 11-15, 2010 on Lyndale
Ave. as part of the Storefront-in-a-Box series in the old ARISE! Book
For just $2, you can swap your art for someone else’s, and all
swappers receive a ticket to the Swap Gala (music! fun!) on Saturday
night, August 14. (Non-swappers can purchase gala tickets that night
Swap hours are:
Wed-Fri, Aug 11-13: 5-9pm
Sat, Aug 14: 11am to 5pm,
Sat, Aug14, 8-11pm ART SWAP GALA with live music
Sun, Aug 15, 1-4pm
Also visiting Art-Swap-in-a-Box will be Storefront for Ideas (a
project of Works/Progress). Storefront for Ideas is a traveling
platform for the exchange of skills, ideas and resources. Barter with
others to complete your creative projects.
See the Giant Pom again! Swap your Art! If You call it Art, We call it Art!
Please spread the word!
There are also a zillion other awesome projects and events going on. Yesterday I went to the Red Hot Art Festival at Stevens Square Park. Cannot believe I have never been to this festival before! It had a much higher percentage of art and crafty stuff that I actually like compared to most arts/crafts fairs. It is definitely more of an edgy, funky crowd. It made me start thinking about what I would have to do to participate in something like that in the future…hmm. I also stopped by the Stevens Square Center for the Arts’ show The New Antiquarians, which is really really good and I highly recommend it. Oh, and I got ice cream called Fat Elvis. Ordering “two scoops of fat Elvis in a bowl please” sounded very strange. But it was delish. Banana ice cream with peanut butter bits and chocolate chips. This is another one of those moments when I wish Rachel Ray hadn’t been the one to patent the word “yummo.” Because it is such a useful word except when you don’t want to be looked upon as someone who is a follower of Rachel Ray. Then again maybe I am the only person who immediately thinks of her when the word “yummo” is used.
In other news…. Fringe Festival mania is about to start. 169 shows in 10 days at 19 venues. So you can expect me to be blogging about that almost exclusively for the next two weeks. Stay tuned to find out my top picks for shows to see, and hear crazy stories of adventures in house managing! (okay brain, time to brush up on my math skillz…)
Here’s an interesting two-part series of articles on the Minnesota Arts Economy from MPR:
I attended the Art at St. Kate’s festival with my friend Beth last Sunday. It was a lot of fun, I hadn’t gone before and am not really a frequent attendee of arts & crafts festivals in general (I think it’s the awkwardness of people hoping you’ll buy something when you wander into their tent that bugs me a little). But it was good, there was a lot of neat stuff, some really funky stuff, and some that I found a little bit on the cheesy side. Which is to be expected. There was lots of really great pottery, some nice textile stuff, and a couple of painters that had some work I liked.
I’m looking forward to FEAST Mpls at Intermedia Arts this Saturday night. I’m probably going to go check this out, it’s the first one I’ll have gone to. I’m very intrigued. Hopefully it will give me something interesting to blog about! I also have yet to go check out any of the Walker Open Field events, but Saturday afternoon’s schedule looks good so maybe I’ll make it a wandering art in the city kind of day.
I’ve been feeling like I’m in a dry spell lately (err…blogging-wise that is!). My husband is out of the country for a few months, which is tough, so I’ve been distracting myself with a lot of movies and reading. I discovered that requesting items from the library works just as well as Netflix, but it’s free!
I was having major dog withdrawal the other day and had to stop myself from browsing the humane society’s available animals list for hours, remembering that not only do I have no time to train a dog, I can’t really afford one either. AND it doesn’t make sense to get one right now, in general. More effectively though, my mom’s email today about their dog throwing up over and over kind of made me glad I don’t have to deal with that right now. I love Sophie and hope she feels better, but….yuck.
Other things on my to-do list:
-still need to find my adapter card for my phone’s memory card so that I can share some of the pictures I’ve taken recently
-register for the state fair fine arts competition by Monday!
-helping out at the Fringe-for-all Preview Showcase for the Fringe Festival on Monday night at the Ritz Theater. Excited for Fringe season to begin!
I was excited to discover that all the Open Field activities are on a google calendar that you can subscribe to. I haven’t actually attended any events yet, out of a combination of being busy with other things and being sort of overwhelmed by the massive variety of offerings. Now I can view what’s going on next to my own google calendar and be easily aware of events that I might like to go to. This upcoming Saturday I’m torn between yoga at Open Field, or WARM field drawing at Lake Harriet Peace garden.
My parents and I bought tickets for Prairie Home Companion at the State Fair so I’m getting excited for them to come visit, and excited for all the excellent summer happenings coming up. I am house managing again for the Minnesota Fringe Festival and am super excited to see some of the previews and figure out what shows I’m going to see this year! It is pretty overwhelming though. There are 169 shows to pick from this year.
I went to see Fireworks and the 10 Second Film Festival at the Soap Factory with friends last night. It was overall pretty fun, although a lot of people were smoking around us and my nose still feels itchy just thinking about it. And it was ridiculously humid and I wore completely the wrong thing. Oh well, long pants were still good armor against the mosquitos. Some of the films were good, others were crap, which is part of the festival’s charm of course. Some highlights:
-guy vigorously beating an elmo piñata
-gerbil bowling (the gerbil is running around in the hamster ball thing, and knocks over some beer cans the people making the video set up)
-documentary about sticks
-snail crossing the road
I can’t remember much else now that’s worth describing, but it was fun, and it was great people watching in the huge crowd.