Collage Series, February 2016

I set myself the task of doing a collage a day and almost got to 10 days but life intervened. Now that I’m back in the studio, I plan to begin this process again with the goal of increasing the size of the paper/support. I’ve long wanted to work larger. My studio doesn’t support huge but I can certainly do larger than these which are all about 7″x9″.

Each was created in under 30 minutes, with materials at hand. I simply wanted to see what would come of the process since I hadn’t worked that way with collage in a while.

Through

I work with this image often. The wheel of heaven, blessings and/or energy from above and the generative threshold, entry. I started with the drawing and moved into paint.

Balance is still a work-in-progress. Working over an old piece.

Evolution

Exploring the cross theme is richer than I imagined. I have yet to leap into creating a large piece on white canvas or paper, but I made a conscious choice to work over existing pieces (which satisfies my desire to re-use/re-purpose) and as I paint, I see how I relate to the underlying piece. Even if I “erase” it, it affects how I chose to develop the the image. And in pushing myself to work with crosses almost exclusively, I’m uncovering my relationship to it, and questioning what I consciously thought about it, while allowing myself to go down all sorts of paths and make all sorts of connections without censorship.

The 3 below were made the other day and are directly related to madonna figures I’ve painted/drawn that include vegetation. They have a solid, earthy quality.

The following are particularly exciting. The 2 on the left were made last week (and I admit they felt close to finished) but I worked into them. This action of “working into” a piece, or working with one image, has been especially hard for me to understand, in large part because my practice has been developing a light, quick and facile style. I’ve spent years developing a spontaneous, authentic line. But that mercurial style belies a restlessness thread in my work as well as my life. The good side of that quality is agility and an ability to adapt, but the flip side is difficulty sticking with, and committing to, a project after the initial bloom wears off.  I’m actually working very directly with that restlessness in daily life. This decision to do a graduate program has upended my life in ways I couldn’t predict, and restlessness is rampant, but just as I’ve made the commitment to be still and pay attention in day-to-day decisions, I’ve also committed to a similar art practice, and it’s finally making sense.

Now for my life to make sense. I actually doubt that “making sense” is even the point… 🙂

 

 

At Loose Ends (07.21.15)

Reading about Guston, Chagall, Hesse, Kandinsky, O’Keefe, Bourgeois and more- reading about map making, cosmology, the spiritual in art, feminist art and more- working 25 hours/week, dealing with roommate issues, aging parents and daily life. Thinking I’m the only one in my cohort who still feels adrift, unsure about “direction” and what constitutes a “body of work.” (Facebook discussions with them assure me I’m not.)

It helps to stand in front of my drawing table every day and do something. It helps to work directly with judgement and confusion to accept them and make stuff anyway. It helps to be around other artists, something I don’t do enough but am looking to do more.

The 2 pieces above were one drawing that I tore in half a while ago. I took them out recently and hung them in my studio- they remind me of Redon- they nudge me- maybe they’ll inspire me- maybe I’ll just contemplate them.
IMG_0926

This unfinished piece is (maybe) the beginning of working with maps. I have an idea about landscape and drought (I have a huge book of old CA maps) and the resources underground- maps enthrall me- many early maps, esp maps of the cosmos and the heavens, try to convey complex ideas and concepts while also  trying to show the passage of time, or unfolding events.

The small collages below were made a few weeks ago- part of my collage practice looking at forms, balance and color- these come from an unconscious place. Not sure I want to “know” that much about them.

 

Breakthrough! (07.14.15)

Apologies for so many posts–catching up with the backlog. And I’m very excited about this breakthrough.

Working with a process suggested by my advisor, I took an image from my Macaulay Sketchbook (I name sketchbooks based on the the name of the book I’m drawing in. If it’s ledger, then the date it was created.) and developed images/words from that starting point. The initial image had no particular meaning, I was simply attracted to it. Images are set up in the order they were created. The last 2 images are monoprints that are (finally) outside the sketchbook.

Script above No 52-53: two mouths yawning in opposite directions

Calligraphy for No.58-59: a tableau a table a hungry mountain spewing spewing like a volcano but not a volcano just a table and a hungry mountain

Script for 2 anvils: a table a tableau ghost of a table a mountain an anvil a place of beating into submission the fruits of the earth

I’m excited by this process that offers a direction and way of working.