Friday, July 31, 2009

The Art of Race Baiting

class sketch study in charcoal

Only instead of sporting tattoos and shaved heads they wear suits and look at ratings.

Trying to scare the white folk

"What happens when America's airwaves fill with hate? BILL MOYERS JOURNAL takes a tough look at the hostile industry of "Shock Jock" media with a hard-hitting examination of its effects on our nation's political discourse."

""It is appalling that less than a year after America elected the first black president, racially motivated fearmongering is allowed to stand in for substantive commentary," Media Matters

Racial Hate Group Activity on the Increase

Southern Poverty Law Center
"is internationally known for its tolerance education programs, its legal victories against white supremacists and its tracking of hate groups."

Shock Jocks Exposed

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Raining Cats, Dogs AND Elephants

So it's a bit difficult to indulge flaneur-ly ways. Walking on the treadmill and watching a Palin documentary doesn't exactly cut it (although it's exercise and that is a GOOD thing and Palin's documentaries are brilliant).

It Raining Cats & Dogs
By the way here is the explanation from phrases org of the origin of the phrase and an analytical debunking of other claimed origins.

So Wot's Up in Studio Jafabrit
Apart from the continuation of my embroidery series
Drawing with thread, based on a left handed drawing in my sketchbook

a lot of pondering
Not to be underestimated
which is not to say I sit on my arse all day
no tennis bottom due to repetive sitting thank you very much
getting tennis elbow was bad enough.

Meanwhile at Nancy's Mr.Plato Gets It

Felted that is lol!
We worked on him 2 hours yesterday and each of us got a tiny portion done. Gluing on bits of felt in a mosaic style is rather more time consuming than we expected, but it's fun to work on him together. Hopefully he will make his debut at the Radical Craft Show Nancy and I are curating for the Yellow Springs Arts Council.

Well off to Maharaja's for lunch today
Curry Here I Come
woo hoo

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

A bit of a Flaneur

Yes, I would say that's what I am, a bit of a Flaneur. Even as a teen I would spend hours strolling around the cities or towns I lived. In Washington DC I just walked, 6 hours one day and 7 the next day. The Arcades Project points out a "flâneur" is completely at home in this cross between interior-exterior because his own personal interior-exterior boundaries are also ambiguous".

"To him the shiny, enameled signs of businesses are at least as good a wall ornament as an oil painting is to a bourgeois in his salon. The walls are the desk against which he presses his notebooks; news-stands are his libraries and the terraces of cafés are the balconies from which he looks down on his household after his work is done. "(Baudelaire 37)

Yes, yes! I love signs, wall ornaments, nature's art in its bounty, cracks in a wall, architecture, unexpected art forms.

It's a bit harder to be a Flaneur in the middle of Ohio and in a tiny village.
I do miss the old stone walls, the architecture of England, the pub signs, indoor markets, street art, victorian ironwork, graveyards and street scenes of Newcastle Upon Tyne.

Groat Market, Newcastle
description of the pub from Newcastle Pubs
History of Pub Names
Inn Sign Society with examples and history of signs

Grainger Market Newcastle Upon Tyne

all photographs by Jafabrit

Monday, July 27, 2009

Cutlure Watch around Yellow Springs

Keith's Alley, Yellow Springs, Ohio

Sometimes I just like to wander around town and especially Keith's alley to see what new mural or graffiti has gone up. I love this artists work (RAC mentioned in the Dayton Daily News). He also did the side of Bentino's on the bike trail. I'm really happy to see some more of his work around town. Under the layers on the next wall is my first and last attempt at spray can graffiti, which may I add got painted over pretty quickly by some primo graffiti :) Think I will stick with the knit/textile graffiti/tagging and the occasional jafabrit sticker art.

Graffiti Alley Ann Arbor Michigan

To find Legal Graffiti Walls or to share info about them visit Legal Walls, and to see examples around the world check out their flickr page called Legal Graffiti Walls Around the World.

Talking about Graffiti Artists
: Legend among Graffiti Artists "Michael Martin, Subway Graffiti Artist Iz the Wiz, Is Dead at 50" :source NYT

Friday, July 24, 2009

Sour Grapes: Anti Knit Graffiti & Yarn bombing Naysayers

There is a raging debate going on, and an opinion by some that knit graffiti /yarnboming should not be getting such publicity. Someone even created an anti knit graffiti manifesto.
They're entitled to their opinion.

I'm an old jafa bird, so as someone who has been knitting off and on for about 4o years, embroidering almost as long, doing crafts 30 years, and been a professional artist 15 years
I am entitled to share my opinion too and here it is.

The manifesto is easily refuted on many counts regarding what is and isn't a waste of time, what knitting should or shouldn't be used for, environmental issues, etc etc.
How Knit Graffiti Artists Spend Their Time
Yarn being used for Decorative Purposes
The fallacious argument about donating knitting to the Homeless
It seems disingenuous for someone to claim any time spent on knitting should be donated with little regard to the real needs requested by homeless shelters.
Please take some time to look at the priority needs list for homeless shelters and those that serve the needs of the homeless (knitted items don't make the list).
cold weather needs: sleeping bags, thermal blankets, coats, shoes to name just a few

Knit Graffiti is just one of those things that has captured the public's imagination and as such received a lot of attention in the news. The sour grapes, the umbrage, smells of jealousy or elitism or resentment. It's a fad, and people are getting joy from it. Nobody says YOU have to do it, or like it. Nobody is dictating how YOU should spend your time or how to use your craft or art supplies, or what you should or shouldn't knit or create.

Bottom Line
I like it, my friends like it, my family like it, children like it (some local children have taken up knitting and want to contribute pieces), and I hear many locals saying they like it. Tourists come to town to get their photos taken next to it. Our village was listed by Budget Travel as one of the" top 10 coolest towns in America" and included the knit graffiti as part of it.
It brightens up the street, and it makes people smile.
That is really all that counts.

Bike Rack yarnbombing Dayton Street, Yellow Springs

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Tennis Elbow and Stuff

and I don't even play tennis. Nope, been embroidering like a mad woman and I'm paying for it, DANG! This article states: "The doctor may tell you to stop any activities that cause symptoms."
I don't think so. Okay, will have to slow down a bit and work on other stuff to give my arm a break, yikes! I mean a rest. Meanwhile this is the progress on my embroidery sketchbook portrait called

"cat scan"

It's based on a reverse painting I did several years ago.
Since My blog description states:
the creative meanderings of a Multi-Media artist.
Here is Where My Meandering Led Lately
I went Ga Ga at Frank Lloyd Wright's Westcott House in Springfield, Ohio. Photos of the interior can be seen on "Doing Things Wright"
I played with food

which led me to thinking about doing a stitched version of my painting "rhubarb pie"

Well have to dash, got to put up a new piece of textile knit graffiti for the Dayton Street Project

Monday, July 20, 2009

Monday Moans:Tortured Artist piffle

Wikipedia gives a definition of the what a "tortured artist" is
and I would say sure there are some tortured souls who happen to be artists, but what about the tortured doctors, nurses, traffic wardens, dentists, stay at home mums, cops, jailers, teachers, farmers, bankers, politicians, shop assistants, journalists, x ray technicians, etc.
ps. the wiki entry has changed

Hum! Reeeeeeeeeeeeally!

"constant ferment due to frustrations with art and other people."
Just google burn out and job frustrations and see what pops up (clue:it isn't artists). Only fermenting I'm interested in is the one that produces marmite.

"feels alienated and misunderstood due to the perceived ignorance or neglect of others who do not understand him and the things he feels are important."
Yea! yea! yea! I used to hear this ad infinitum on the crisis hotline. The complaints would range from people not understanding their choices, their lifestyle, their political/religious beliefs, their careers, their hobbies, and the list goes on. I tell you Mr. Poop, Mr. Haircut and Diaper Man were very misunderstood.

"He sometimes smokes, experiences sexual frustration and reoccurring heartbreak, and generally appears overwhelmed by his own emotions and inner conflicts."
It Sucks , but it doesn't torture me.
I mean come on all sorts of people have these problems (not me!not me!)

"The tortured artist is often mocked in popular culture for "thinking too much," being quixotic, or coming across as pretentiously adverse to happiness and fun."

And political figures, power elites, liberals, and many others too numerous to list are not mocked. Was it not just recently that east coast intellectual elites were mocked, as in the anti intellectual tirades. As for happiness and fun, Frida Kahlo wasn't adverse to happiness, but it is kind of hard to be happy all the time when one lives in pain after about 30 surgeries and your husband keeps bonking your sister.
ah! key words pretensiously adverse to happiness.
Okay that doesn't fit either.
Never Mind!

"Tortured artists are often self-destructive in behavior, and are often associated with mental health issues such as substance abuse, depression, or bipolar disorder. Tortured artists are often prone to suicide."

Often?No data supports "often prone to suicide" claim. A government study listing depressive episodes by career lists food prep and service industry at the near top. "According to a U.S. government report, more than 19 million adults in the United States suffer from depression".
As for substance abuse just check nation wide trends , likewise for self destructive behaviours, and suicide demographics.

Ps. I notice the wiki entry has been changed a wee bit since I did this blog entry.
Hum! no bibliography/notes references?

Psychiatrist Kay Redfield Jamison notes in her book “Touched with Fire” that the majority of people suffering from a mood disorder “do not possess extraordinary imagination, and most accomplished artists do not suffer from recurring mood swings.” source: Developing Talent
on the other hand
Here are some tips on how to ACT like a tortured artist from wiki how

Now if you don't mind I have seriously important work to do ALONE in my chaotic studio , I vant to be alone to ferment, drink my tannic acid in my half empty teacup and listen to depressing opera.
Toodle bloody Pip

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Textile Graffiti and Terrified Sandwiches

WIP: I wanted to do something a wee bit different for the textile graffiti and I had visions of integrating knitting, felt, canvas and any other scraps I come across. Even though I don't have a specific pattern I'm trying to use colours that are around the area of the pole on Dayton Street in Yellow Springs. This is wide enough to go around a telephone pole (30inches) and will eventually be about 4 or 5 ft in length.

A British Twist
I really MISS seeing this, and to see THIS done to it, well I LOVE it.
You can always count on Yarnbombing to showcase some of the most interesting knit/textile graffiti and links from around the world.

Frame of Mind
and as an artist I don't have a good one when it comes to framing. It's something I have avoided like the plague (unless I can custom build my own to suit the particular piece). In fact the whole notion of putting my embroidery into any kind of frame is not appealing to me at all.
This is going to be a bit of a challenge next year when I have my exhibit.

Saw a Terrified Sandwich Last Nightby Amorette Dye at the Art Space Gallery

Thursday, July 16, 2009

the eyes have it

and I just love painting them AND embroidering them.

Have to share this classic moment in comedy again
Cook's and Moore's discussion of art and eyes in art still has me in stitches

Monday, July 13, 2009

She's on top of her ergi

Art News Blog hosted a wee "win a chair" competition give away from WayFair Furniture :)
wowie I WON
All we had to do was leave a comment what colour and why and I wrote:
"The topstar in lime green because it looks like a work of art, because it rocks, because it looks goofy, because it would fit in my studio, because I LOVE it, because I WANT one, because I want to hear my husband say, "what the hell is that", and I can say smugly, "why darling it is my ergonomic stool" humph!"
In my best Lucy voice!
thanks to Art News Blog and CSN, and to the Person who chose me

My husband sort of a got a surprise when he found a large fed ex box at the front door. "did you order something" he says. To which I say,"no dear" la de da di da! "Hum, you sure because it has YOUR name on it and it is from Germany". So I spill the beans and tell him I won something. His second surprise though was finding out he had to put it together. He did say what the heck is that, and I did say, " why darling, it's my ergi".

Shipping was really fast.Design wise it is primo quality and easy, they even packaged the air pump to pump up the inner ball. It has certainly intrigued my visitors, and it is surprisingly comfortable. I can tell it is good for my back.
So, yes it fits in my studio, yes it looks like a work of art, and yes it does rock (literally lol).
Thank You

Why doctors recommend Ergonomic Chairs

Friday, July 10, 2009

I of the NEEDLES

The Guerrilla Girl in Me
is located on Corry Street outside IN A FRAME
I decided to do a mini version of the camo doll knit graffiti. It's amazing how many people pass this box and NEVER notice it, so it is one of those quiet little art pieces hanging around town. I kind of like the idea that it blends in so well people don't notice it, but when they do I hope it is a nice little surprise.

Clickety Clack Clickety Clack
So go the knitting needles as the jafagirls get ready to replace some tired looking knit graffiti on Dayton Street.


Tiny, weenie, miniscule sculptures by Willard Wigan, amazing, but I think I will stick to just using the needle to sew with.

This is Cool
I was included in the 100 Best Scholarly Art Blogs on the Online University Reviews website. Although it doesn't specify why I want to thank the reviewer for including me.

Sunday, July 05, 2009

Sketchbook: Children's Drawing & Embroidery

I adored the little drawing and note my son wrote when he was eight and printed a copy of it for my painted sketchbook page. I thought it would be fun to do this page in stitch.

Colours are not quite as intense, but it is a acrylic color wash on yellow fabric. Next I will start the embroidery at the lower half. The doctor figure is trapunto, which you might be able to see close up. Basically trapunto is when the design is outlined with two or more rows of running stitches and then padded from the underside to achieve a raised effect.

Thursday, July 02, 2009

Life muddles on:However is the word

I seem to be on some kind of partial sabbatical from blogging and painting. Part of it seems to be the waning interest my blog generates and reduction of visitors (90% visits are via google search), part of it is my indifference to the whole business of art ( promoting it or trying to sell it). I would say disappointment and discouragement has taken it's toll in that regard.
I'm obsessed with embroidery and I'm LOVING it.
So my creative needs are being met via the needle rather than the paintbrush right now.
Many people don't see embroidery as art, least of all fine art. I don't see embroidery included in collections in fine art museums (except in textile sections devoted to ancient cultures). Even in the Textile Museum in DC, there were no examples of embroidery other than incorporated into a utilitarian item or decorative/religious clothing.
There are samplers but they were meant to show sewing skills rather than an artistic expression using sewing. It's not that there aren't examples of exquisite deocrative embroidery, but as a fine art form it is still relegated to the craft and utilitarian. I wonder if that is going to change though as more and more artists incorporate embroidery into their repertoire of personal expression? Shows like "Pricked: Extreme Embroidery" at the Museum of Arts & Design have started that change perhaps.
There are embroidery museums and one can see examples of embroidery as art but it is still relegated to a specialized craft rather than incorporated in the art world per se.
Embroidery Museum and Resource Center in Louisville, KY
UK Embroiderers' Guild at Hampton Court, London
I did find this in the Philadelphia Museum of Art listed under modern and contemporary art.
Strange that the one example I could find was by a man, probably couldn't find any embroidery art done by a woman, ahem!

Which brings me to the Guerilla Girls and the fact that women continue to be seriously underrepresented in the art museums, art history books etc.
We shouldn't really need to have a Women's Art Musuem in the first place, but oh well!

Talking about Textiles
Mr.Plato is slowly coming along

I worked on his hand yesterday.