Monday, March 30, 2009

She who ponders

Is she who scribbles in sketchbooks

and talking of sketchbooks
Sketchbook Project
The Art House Sketchbook Project made it into the Brooklyn Daily Eagle.

the doll is my wish doll made out of cloth, wire, my hair, leather, clay feet
and wearing a Turkish evil eye bead (nazar bonjuk) on the wrist.
and to my son

AYDogum gunun kutlu olsun!

Sunday, March 29, 2009

A duh moment

I wanted an incentive box to put by the treadmill (certain loved one's have said they will put a dollar in every time I use the treadmill for a given time) so I went to the shop to see if I could find something. I did and it cost $15 dollars and I'm thinking how ridiculous for me to spend money for a money box. That's when I had the duh moment, sheesh, I can recycle, I can make it myself using the scraps I have in the garage.
The front of the box is a test piece I did a couple of years ago and is a photograph of one of my heart paintings that I glued to mdf board and then coated with resin. The top is open for easy droppage of coinage.

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Dead Sparrows in Sweaters

Taxidermy Sparrows with Knitted Sweaters by Annette Messager
source of image Moma

"The use of "real" animals and the act of knitting make a close connection
with real life and ordinary events and undermine the idea of art
as something removed from everyday experience. "
Remember when I took this photo of a dead squirrel carefully placed on a sofa on
the side of the road, her birds have the same meaning for me.

I was reading about Annette Messager who uses photography, drawing, knitting, embroidery, text and objects in her art to challenge fixed ideas of art and "culturally assigned roles of women" and thinking WOW, this is a woman after my own heart.

Talking about embroidery and sewing.
I am still sewing wig hair onto my artpiece.

What I think of the actual piece I don't know. I am not loving it visually  but I do like the concept and I'm enjoying the process even though it's tedious.

Friday, March 27, 2009

Artistic License: Some have it and some don't

and I've got it

Yep, here it is.

I first saw it on BoingBoing and followed the link to the Evolution Control Committee to order my very own. Last week I actually had someone ask me if I had a license to put up the yarnbombing on the local pole. Oh if I only had my license on me then I would have whipped it out and said, "ah hah! as a matter of fact I do, uh huh, yes siree, here it is".

The Naked Truth
Paintings are Removed
But what on earth would the police charge him with?
Painting naked men? Forcing art on the world?
Oh no, it wasn't authorized to be on display, dang!
He didn't have his artist license I bet.

Source of Image Telegraph UK

Thanks to San at Life with a View who shared the Shake the World project
I sent a pic , woo hoo!
My goodness gracious me, all this artistificating
Well us creative types can't seem to help ourselves eh!

I joined thanks again to another of my fave bloggers Bad! Kitty Art. It's one of those " channel surfing for blogs sites. It pulls random recently updated blogs and automatically flips through them." I figured why not give it a go, eh!

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Craftivism isn't just selling crafts, is it?

Craftivism in the News
Merchants stake future on "craftivism" in Asheville, NC

Focus on local Artists helps Boutique Grow

I suppose the act of pushing for appreciation or sales of handmade crafts goes against mass consumerism but does it really fit with activism? Crafters have been selling for years at craft fairs, in local shops/galleries, online.
The buying handmade movement has been around for a while.
If craft+activism=craftivism then where is the activism?

Isn't using traditional crafts in a non traditional way more fitting to the definition?
Such as these artists/crafters, a lonely craftivist, Radical Cross Stitch, or Orley Cogan whose embroidery is anything but traditional in it's content.
For further exploration I recommend this blog
art+craft = craftivism

I love this photo Zakzorah took of my doll in Graffiti Alley Ann Arbor Michigan

I didn't get any good closeups so I really appreciate Zakzorah sending me the photo.
I also like that people are getting a kick out it.

Wonder where the NEXT Jafa camo doll will turn up next?

Monday, March 23, 2009

ChamberPot Gallery: A loo with a View

If you live in the area and can deliver an artwork to Yellow Springs for the ChamberPot Gallery then check out our website. We are putting out a call to artists for a semi permanent exhibit for June 2009. The theme is Yellow Springs and the work will stay up until it is sold or the artist wishes to remove it after a year.
I was really happy with the results of using CanvasPress for my "Commodus" piece last year and so placed an order for a maniuplated photograph I took of the knit knot tree for this year's exhibit.

I chose NOT to use a regular photograph.
I felt showing it this way added a surreal element and an ephemeral quality.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Art Then and Now

Ken Johnson's Rebel Without The Claws?
"Despite its rousing first impact, the exhibition (Sheperd Fairey) leaves you with a sense of dismay at the devolution of a certain avant-garde dream into a kind of visual easy listening for the college-educated masses."

The Gesture Rules Exhibit at The Art Space
Our (as in the Yellow Springs Arts Council) Art Space was honored to showcase Deborah Dillon-Bloch and Andrzej Bloch selected works from their private collection of Polish Graphic Posters and Intaglio Prints from post World War II circa 1950-1995. The works have been described as bold, potent, mesmerizing, and stunning in their use of the gesture. The artists displayed offer an insight into a unique period in Poland’s history.

After seeing the Dillon's collection I understand what the critic Ken Johnson, meant when he stated about Fairey's exhibit, "What is missing from his work is a deeper, more personal and therefore less predictably formulaic dimension. "

The images in Gesture Rules exhibit was stunning on several levels in regards to draftsmanship, quality, and content.

Photo taken at the exhibit by c.bayrak
Poster by Stasy Eidrigevicius Furmanny Zawlek

From what I learned, this poster was a reference to the era of Martial Law in Poland. The Five pointed red star is the symbol for communism and Russia.

Empty still he sat and pined.
And then a notion cheered his mind:
The miller's daughter I shall wed.
"Girl, I ask your hand," he said.

Poem by Kurt Baumann and illustration by Stasy Eidrigevicius from the book The Hungry One: a poem

If you look closely this is a photograph of someone holding a mask done by Stasy and I think really illustrates the poem beautifully.

If you missed this exhibit you might have a chance to see it again next week. Pop back here for an update.
UPDATE: Second Showing Saturday, March 28 from 11am to 3pm

As for Fairey's work, I like it, but I would have to agree with the NYT critic, it doesn't have the personal wallop. "Maybe if some such psychological dimension were more consciously integrated, Mr. Fairey’s work would be more like art than like canny illustration of what everyone already knows".

Of course that is one critics opinion. If anyone saw Fairey's exhibit please do post and share your opinion s to why you liked the work (putting aside one's personal opinion of Fairey) or didn't, or felt the critic was on target.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Finding your inner Gargoyle

On St. Patricks day I found my inner gargoyle at Vitosha, petted George, yarnbombed graffiti alley with a new camo doll, bought Umberto Eco's book "ON UGLINESS", roamed Ann Arbor, ate Ethiopian Fare at the Blue Nile, drank a bottle of Champagne and then required assistance climbing into a HUGE four poster bed at the B&B.

It was a good St.Patricks day
I hope your's was too

May the best day of your past
Be the worst day of your future.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Kippers and Drowning the Shamrock

Well I said I like my kippers and these are Scottish kippered herrings I picked up from my brit supply store. Sometimes it is nice to set a table with your fave breakfast on a fave piece of dinnerware (Woodfield by Steubenville from the 1940's on a fave piece of tatted lace made by a relative) instead of scarfing something down in the kitchen, at the computer or the usual kitchen table. I don't have a recipe for cold smoked herrings but I have a recipe for serving Herrings from my 1810 book
You notice something about the spelling?
I wasn't aware they still used fricative( learned a new word today) in written English in 1810.
Some of the information is dated, but the advice on choosing, preparing and cooking produce, meats is still very good.

I think I will give the larks, cow heel soup, calf's head and few others a miss though.

Have a Happy St. Patricks Day
No Corned Beef and Cabbage for us though (that is an american tradition)
We are celebrating our 31st wedding anniversary and I might just go and drown the shamrock :) woo hoo!!!!!

Saturday, March 14, 2009

What a Trifle

I hung an early sample of the dickie bird on "gulch gal" on Dayton Street for Free Art Friday

And Made a Spooky Trifle for a Dinner Party
Death by Chocolate and it is unfortunate that the sweetness did not sweeten the tongue of one of the guests. Yes folks an art work will result lol! Can you guess?

Radical Crafts
I am doing research on radical crafts for the exhibit our committee (I am part of the Arts Council Art Space Team ) is planning in the fall. I couldn't really find a definition online for Radical Crafts, but it means any craft that is changed or used differently from the accepted or traditional forms.

I think most people associate felt with felted wool/ crafts.
In doing a search online for felt art the results overwhelmingly point towards traditional crafts.
I did find one or two sites that showed a departure from the traditional.
I like this bacon of hate posted on The AntiCraft! site and this felt prick pin cushion is hilarious.
Here is a little HISTORY OF FELT

I think this "Counterfeit Crochet Project" is just brilliant on several levels.

Cross Stitch & Sewing
Radical Cross Stitch Seriously Seditious Stitching
Deeply Superficial People

I suppose this is why knit graffiti/yarnbombing appeals to me in that it takes yarn and puts it into a new context. Is it really graffiti? No, not in the truest sense of the term, but a play on words and the concept.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Caravaggio Cheated

well, not really, he just did what many artists have done throughout history
Caravaggio used 'photography' to create dramatic masterpieces.

Amor Vincit Omnia by Caravaggio

There are many purists/art snobs who claim that the use of projector or a photograph is cheating and will dismiss the work of an artist who does use them. The interesting problem with that view is that they will have to dismiss a whole slew of artists in history whose painting and drawing skills are unquestioned. One can't just copy a photograph/use a projector and render a realistic painting without a solid background in drawing, and anatomy/life drawing.
Vermeer and the Camera Obscura

Famous Painters who copied photographs.

So next time someone gives you a hard time about using photographs or a projector (camera obscura) tell them if it was good enough for Caravaggio, Canaletto, Vermeer, Sir Joshua Reynolds it's good enough for you.

Better to use your own photographs (or with permission of the photographer) unless you want to get in a pickle like Sheperd Fairey
From the view of a photographer on the use of their images please check out
Visual Perspective on the issue of copyright.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Tuesday's Knits and Strange Things on Bycycles

wooden quilt kimono

Ah, camo barbie is hanging around the studio waiting for a home on a pole or a tree, but where will it be? That is the question? Meanwhile jafabrit was hanging around town (what a gorgeous day) and I don't know why but this made me giggle.

and then I put this up

recycled plastic bag knit graffiti
corner of Walnut and Dayton Street
will be adding more to it

Of course in between all this I did the usual mundane chores we are all cursed with, bagged stuff for charity, ate a giant plate of chips with a pal at Williams Eatery (you got to try their chips-oops I mean french fries), updated the arts council blog, answered emails, chatted with locals, found more plastic bags to cut into strips and knit,and cooked a curry for dinner
( country captain's chicken curry).

Well toodle pip until another day
got shopping to do , need ingredients for a creepy trifle

Monday, March 09, 2009

Why Art became Ugly

This writer has a theory and he makes some great points.
I read all the ism's and theories, I get it but I don't create with a thought about theories, truths, shocking , or making ugly images on purpose, etc.
Somebody on another blog made the statement
"Artists on the other hand think their plight is due to an uneducated public."
Maybe some do, but isn't that sort of buying into the theories of others who make such claims on behalf of artists? I don't feel it is my job to educate the public about what they should like or not when it comes to art.
When I run out of turps in the studio and don't have milk for my tea
and I can't get them due to being snowed in.
That is a PLIGHT!

So meanwhile back at the Studio
I made UGLY artcropped version of"Now-ism"
a belief that what exists now within one's one sphere of experience is the norm with no understanding of global relevance or history and the context of the present in relation to that.

I was exploring the issue of shaving when I found a number of comments relating to the current fad of waxing or shaving off pubic hair. The vehement remarks against having pubic hair was astonishing. There was seemingly little realization that their norm is not universal, but a cyclic fad, a contrived norm to fit a model of what a body is "supposed" to look like.
I am not saying right or wrong.
To have preferences is one thing, but to have such revulsion/body hatred embedded into one's psyche against a normal feature of one's body seems perverted and wrong.

Which brings me to a new book called "Bodies". I read an interview of Susie Orbach and I was like "yep! yep! uh huh! "Orbach is good at ferreting out facts to support her findings from the therapy couch. Put together, they create a picture of the human race starving, waxing, slicing and exercising into a state of madness. "

Historic Notes

Why Women Shave Their Legs and Underarms -
"It all began with the May, 1915 edition of Harper's Bazaar magazine that featured a model sporting the latest fashion. She wore a sleeveless evening gown that exposed, for the first time in fashion, her bare shoulders, and her armpits."
Check out this time line on the history of shaving on this website , kind of interesting to see how the norm changes according to fashion, circumstances, corporate interests, and as a means to distinguish class differences.

NOTE on Embroidery Piece
Hand tinted felt, black floss, recycled/repurposed wig hair (specifically wanted to use FAKE hair).

Sunday, March 08, 2009

Sunday Snippets

I hung around town on Friday and got caught hugging a tree by "super" Dave (hey it was nice to meet you Dave), photographed a couple of things, ate a yummy sarni from the Emporium, and petted a ferret. I have never petted a ferret before and it was sooooooo sweet.

This is Romy Farrar with her pet ferret "grandpa".
She was very sweet to let me pet him and take a pic, thanks Romy.
This is what I love about Yellow Springs, always fun to go downtown, never quite know what you will see, and the people are friendly.
I never thought ferrets could be so cute

Side of the Emporium, Yellow Springs, Ohio

Global Issues
Media and Art's Issues

Sheree, thanks for leading me to this info about the documentary
Who Does She Think She Is?
How many of you women/mothers have had your work dismissed as "JUST" a hobby (even though your work is shown and sold in galleries, exhibits)? I was told by a male art teacher he didn't waste time on bored housewives. I showed him how bored I was LOL!
New York Times review

Friday, March 06, 2009

The Art of a Story

When was the last time you had someone tell you a story?
Perhaps as a child as you drifted off to sleep?

I was invited by the Yellow Springs Storytellers, Jonatha & Harold Wright, to attend an event organized by Kevin Cordie (creator of the Story Box Project), and the guest storyteller was Native American Dovie Thomason . Little did I know at the time she is "an award-winning storyteller..recognized internationally for her ability to take her listeners back to the "timeless places" that she first "visited" as a child, hearing old Indian stories from her Kiowa Apache and Lakota relatives, especially her Grandma Dovie and her Dad."
Oh yes, it's true, I listened and was taken back to a timeless place,
mesmerized by the words and lost in the stories.
I shall never sweep the floor and not think of her Grandma looking like Geronimo with a perm wielding a broom like a weapon and muttering at the dirt in the corners, fighing the dirt and wondering aloud why white folks built houses where we have to fight the dirt all our lives.
You can hear a sample of her story "mice make peace" on this page.

The Art of Boosting Creativity
The European Union has declared 2009 the year of Creativity and Innovation with the focus on boosting creativity, "Imagine. Create. Innovate."

Here is a sample of some of the projects:Video games that educate young people about human rights. Language-learning kits for international truck drivers. Local culinary traditions revived thanks to tourism. Art as a tool for economic development and social integration.
One of the debates they will present is "cultural diversity as a source of creativity and innovation".

Which brings me back to my night listening to this oglala lakota storyteller called Dovie.
Different culture, different time, yet her stories addressed universal themes of the human condition . How those universal themes are approached is unique in each culture, and that is where the magic begins, that is where we learn to think outside the box.

20 Tips for Boosting Creativity

Wednesday, March 04, 2009

Going Green

and it's not because I'm Irish (well I am a wee bit).
Nope talking about

and thought I would introduce Green Girls Global
"an international blog about people from various different places with various different experiences, skills and interests talking about how they and people where they live are trying to live a more sustainable life."
Here is their Arts & Design section
oodles of GREAT links
thanks to Wee Birdy who mentioned Fabrications
" an independent gallery, shop and studio dedicated to all aspects of contemporary textiles and design. With a particular interest in recycling and Eco design".

Meanwhile back at the Studio
I have completed the first section of a plastic bag knit graffiti
for our JafaGirl Dayton Street Project.
There are a number of Guerrilla knitters who are recycling plastic bags, and Yarnboming shares a few photos, as well as how to make yarn out of old newspapers (this is really cool).

Art House Sketchbook Project Opening

I want to give Sheree at ART AND LIFE a HUGE thank you for taking this webshot of my sketchbook and sharing it, as well as the event, on her blog. I am guessing a dear friend who reads this blog might get a kick out of it.

Sunday, March 01, 2009

Red Shoes & Chakaia Booker

photograph by c.bayrak

Horace Mann Statue in the middle of a field in Glen Helen, Yellow Springs.
Not sure when his feet were painted red, but they have been like that for a long time.
He was the first President of Antioch College and is famous for his quote that is etched on the statue's plinth and was the schools motto.
"Be ashamed to die until you have won some victory for humanity."

Rod Serling was a student at Antioch and was so inspired by the words that he used them in a Twilight Zone Episode called "The Changing of the Guard".

It is sad to see this college closed, now a ghost campus, and left to rot as evidenced by poor maintenance.

Focus on Women and Recylcing/Repurposing
Chakaia Bookersource of image: National Museum of Women

"began working with rubber tires in the early 1990’s and presently continues to work in this medium. The various tread patterns, colors, and widths which the tires possess create a palette for Booker similar to the palette of painter." wikipedia
I met Chakaia briefly at her Mason Gross exhibit and when she walked into the room WOW!
I can't tell you which was more intriguing, looking at her wall reliefs made of rubber tyres (yes duckie's, English spelling ) or her. Wiki states she likes to " create a wearable sculpture in response to the materials which she uses in her current work". She said the same thing, that each day she spends time creating new things to wear and they are never the same.

Painted Found Bark by Jafabrit