Sunday, November 23, 2008

Where is the bail-out for non-profit community programs including ART!?!

I'll just let the title of this post hang in the air and we can all stew over the answers until,, until, until....until....well, lets not hold our breath, okay.

Ron's Solo Show 2008

  Here is a collage of photos I took Friday at Ron's show.  He had a few new pieces and my favorite he still has...If after the first of the year its still available, we are gonna have to talk lay-a-way!  He has a new series called the The 45 Series inspired by records, the 45 size.  Now, if you're younger than a certain age, there might be some pauses while you've figured out what records are and then what are 45s.  And he uses vintage cloth as a backdrop for them!!!!  Ummmm, it hit me immediately, I'm just waiting for him to catch up because a collaboration of some kind is in our future.  He also had napbooks for sale for a couple of bucks...napbooks are one page of his poems.  One of them cracked me read "..." well let me show ya, but give me a second to scan it--- 

this is the front-

Img013  flip it over and its one of his poems-


For all the USAians, I'm wishing a week ahead of gratitude, peace, and laughter for those who have traditional and non-traditional Thanksgivings.  Ummm, rethinking that...I wish everyone world over the same, holiday or not. 

Friday, November 21, 2008

Did they see me coming????

Whenever I made an impulsive purchase my mother would quip "Girl, they saw you coming".  I picked up the few supplies I needed for the calligraphy workshop at Artists and Craftsman Supply and right beside the cash register were these...

Img012 now, I've never made an artist trading card in my life...even for me who likes small, I've always considered them too small for me to make.  To my credit I did place 3 more back in their slots opting to try just these.  My thought was with the calligraphy workshop working on paper, who knows, I might just do something with them soon as opposed to later.  It doesn't take much for me to become excited when its fiber related.  Last night at LAFTA meeting there was a show and tell with altered books (hey, I've been down that road and loved it) and I was getting that all too warm and fuzzy feeling thinking I need to jumpstart my altered book making...and then another artist showed her hand made dolls in cloth and my stomach was on fire (because yeah, I wanted to at least try that once too).  And then several showed their hand felting work and my ears started to wiggle.  But I busted on my own bubble remembering the purse I was crocheting last winter that I was going to felt which is still laying in the basket by the comfy chair where I placed it in April (nearly finished, hey, I get points for that!) and just resigned myself to thinking admiring and getting energized from the work of others is enough (for now).

On the radio shows I was trying to has recordings of the Studs Terkel show available!!!! So I'm good to go with that.  I still need to write the letter to Guy Davis for Ossie's and Ruby's show.

My brother has a reception tonight for another show in Lexington that I'll be going to this evening.  I'll take the camera for some photos in a few days!


Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Winter Is Not My Friend

Ahhhh %4&@#! it done turned cold!!!!!!!!! (spoken in street-wise intonation).  Counting my blessings that I don't have to stand on a street corner and wait for buses!!!!  I'm sorry if you love this weather but you must know that (to quote myself) "winter is not my friend".  Yesterday I popped out of bed and kept my focus on what needed to be done before leaving...but I tell ya! once I hit that cold weather I was done.  Its gets inside of me and its like I can never get it out.  My body hurts, my mind gets, by the time I arrived at my workshop I couldn't think straight...the cold winds (known as the hawk) for the brief times I was in and out of the car, flew off with my focus. 

Once there, I re-arranged some tables that was feng-shit and then I had to arrange them back to the original layout to get a better shui going on.  After that I quilted in circles on a quilt which helped me some to focus and concentrate with a little bit of clarity.  After 3 hours I called it a day and returned home to a hot meal waiting thanks to the slow cooker and settled down with my family. 

Peter has a some years before he can retire, (God willing and the creek don't rise) I hope we can get outta here to a more warmer climate.  And I'm going to try not to bitch, moan, and complain about the cold weather here at Seamless Skin...its a noble aspirations but I'm warning you, don't nail me down to it.  And if I read on your blog how much you love this weather, know that I'll just roll my eyes and try not to leave a snarky comment. 

Saturday, November 15, 2008


Talk about getting "mean and surly"?!!!  In my head my workshop is a laboratory and I'm an unwaivering crazy scientist going at it non-stop trying to keep up with the ideas popping off in my brain.  So even in spite of the physical need to rest, I get "mean and surly" (remember that movie with Whoopi, LL Cool J, Jada Pinkett Smith where Whoopi was going to have those words on her husband's tombstone?)  when I'm unable to be there. 

Finally, I returned on Thursday but piddled to reacclimate myself back to a flow.  Friday, my intent was to arrive afternoon and work late, pulling close to an all-nighter.  I couldn't go past the 5 hours I typically put in and decided to come home.  I hit the bed and slept hard but this morning woke with this piece on my mind:  DSCN3723 (you can always click on the picture to enlarge)  The black colour didn't wash out to the paleness I expected.  What I did differently was to use Afterfix instead of soda ash...the dye paint mixture was mostly thickener with what I thought was a low percentage of dye.  I don't like this...I have 4 ideas to improve it (more cohesive in appearance) as I so much love the piece overall. 

1. discharge the black letters (which are outlined in a black resist used in silk painting)

2. randomly place more letters, (and/or) smaller in size.

3. flip it over and dye paint the back side in an orange, green, or gray.  the section I love the most is the warmer hues versus the cooler ones at the top but I do want to keep some constrast between warm and cool.

4.  cut it up into 2 or 3 sections with 1 cut going down the middle of the bold letters and put them in one piece.  my original intent was to keep this panel as a whole cloth.  cutting it up could make for much more visual interest.

I don't think I'm going to touch it until after I finish with the calligraphy workshop which will generate new ideas. 

Oh, and for those who might be interested.  Amy Goodman and Juan Gonzalez did an exlusive interview with William Ayers and Bernardine Dohrn.  This is a transcript or you can listen to the audio or video as well:  Democracy Now .  Part 2 will air Monday and can be heard/read online later in the afternoon.  Ayers book on his Weathermen Underground experience is being re-issued this week.  I guest he can thank Sarah Palin for that because prior to her repeating his name over and over in an attempt to disgrace our President Elect, Ayers wasn't even remotely near my radar.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Good intentions

laid to rest.  My plan was to go for breakfast and head down to my workshop today.  I'm gotten just a little surly...its been a week and I left my place a mess because I was in a flow thinking I was going to return the next day. 

I did make it for breakfast and a short stop to Border's to pick up Poets & Writers(looking forward to reading Morrison's new novel, A Mercy) andArts Across Kentucky but came home instead of going to my workshop.  So I'm back to chilling out by catching up on some of my favorite blogs to follow:

Tror Na Foe, David Grant's blog about finding his roots through DNA matching.  It reads so beautifully. 

Have you seen The Secret Life of Bees?  I read the book years ago and went to see the movie 2 weeks ago...just beautiful!!! Over at Sankofa Doll JournalI discovered there will be special edition Black Madonna Honey coming out.  I hope this area gets them...I would love to have one.

If you are looking for a gift of encouragement for a Black male youth on your list, consider this.

I'm excited about an upcoming workshop to enhance my writing on cloth.  Check out Laurie Doctor.

In web searching for the info I wrote about in the previous post.  I discovered that Dee and Davis have a son who is a bluesman.  I love discovering new to me blues and jazz singers/musicians.  Guy Davisis his name.  I'm going to write a hand written letter to him via the address listed for his agent with the hopes he'll be able to help me find the archived radio show his parents did.  And a shout out of thanks to Fulviaand Raynafor attempting to help me out.

Ron, my brother, has made some of his digital art pieces available for cards and prints via Red Bubble (similiar to Cafe Press).

And I have always loved the big colorful parrots, the talking birds (a friends grandfather had one that would ask for popcorn and then cuss you out real good if you said you didn't have any, it was wild and my first and last time of actually being around those type of birds), and these birds.

Okay, dokey, yall stay cool. Peace.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

i'm really desperate now to find this

The death of Studs Terkel sent me back to my early teen years.  Saturday mornings I listed to his radio show and Saturday afternoons I listened to Ruby Dee and Ossie Davis' radio show.  I did that for years. It was such a routine part of my Saturdays.  I can't imagine too many people now actually count "sitting and listening to the radio" as an activity in and of itself.  I listen to radio now while I'm cooking, driving, and during light reading.  Man, that was back in the day when radio and tv stations acutally signed off!!!!  As much as I love my internet access I do infrequently mourn the 24-7 availabity to plug-into-any-technology-drug-of-choice that we have. 

But this time internet access is failing me and I'm desperate to find issued cds of the archived radio shows with Dee and Davis.  The name of the show was With Ossie and Ruby.  If anyone out there who stumbles by or comes to visit can lead me in the right direction or strong clue, please help me out!  I'll be so happy and grateful!

Thanks, now I'm off to see if I can find Studs' shows on cd. 

Saturday, November 8, 2008

An Open Letter to Obama From Alice Walker

You have no idea, really, of how profound this moment is for us. Us being the black people of the Southern United States. You think you know, because you are thoughtful, and you have studied our history. But seeing you deliver the torch so many others before you carried, year after year, decade after decade, century after century, only to be struck down before igniting the flame of justice and of law, is almost more than the heart can bear.

Read the full letter.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

a short bio


  the above had me chanting "trust the process".  this should wash out to a transparent gray.


  tombstones added...something else has to happen to make it more coherent...not sure if it will be a panel or be cut up.


  the start of something new


A few days before the election this is what I was doing.  I been going fast (for me) and furious since returning from the Crow Barn. 

Last Sunday I attended a performance and exhibit-Dear Felicia: A Soldier's Manual for Birds and Angels, a collaboration between poet-scholar Estella Majozo and painter Joan Zehnder.  Ten minutes into the performance tears started strolling down my face and held a steady stream through most of the 60 minute performance.  The writing was a series of letters to a female soldier while examining the poet's reconcilliation on her son's decision to join the military.  I don't know why I responded with tears...maybe because I know her son and remember when he was born, maybe because Estella is a close spiritual friend...maybe it took me someplace with the battles for my own children.  I remember how personally traumatized I was when this war first started as well as other acts by the Bushit administration.  Since then I've tempered my politics and opted instead to reach inside and pull out the artist in me as a way to stay sane. 

Monday I felt a little fatigued but opted to go out for breakfast and then down to my workshop.  Tuesday came the scratchy throat, body aches and arriving with my 17 y.o son to the polls at 5:45 with a 45 minute wait in the early morning chill .  Couple this with the excitement of watching the results and numerous telephone calls and it all got the best of me...yesterday I felt like I had one foot in the grave and made a doc's appointment which confirmed the pnuemonia I already diagnosed. 

I'm sitting here typing this post to past the time while waiting on a home health nurse to arrive-this was the option I chose instead of being hospitalized.  I'm holding the line wishing I had a glass of wine.

As far as words from me on Obama's win I'm elated and taken with his role in history and have not felt this way since Mandela's release from prison (which I also had pnuemonia then).  For what I want to say, I'm not ready.  I'll be processing for a long while and am not sure I will do so here.  I'm thinking about starting a blog to document my reactions to the Obama and first family's role for the next four years. 

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Making quilts marks time

In comments to the previous post, Karen made the suggestion of using shear fabric for the auditioned letters...I was thinking transparency in either a sheer or using (the brand of inks I can never spell or say but begins with a t and has the word sun in it) inks. 

 I also thought about having the letters cast shadows to create even more depth which I think would work because of the glowishness of the yellow in suggesting light.  To quote from my lil' brotha's critique, "no...hell, no" on the letters...he thought it was too pretentious.  But as he also reminded me, its all up to me in the end, and he is right because the last time I checked I was three times seven and then some.

After more time spent Saturday meditating on it some more, I temporarily decided to wait some profound, uh?  But that is all I could do, so with trusting the process, I moved onto a new piece that I wasn't feeling until I added the whiteish lines and then that opened me up to add the faces...there is a line in the poem that goes: African ghosts cry in sunset hours.  The faces appear ghost-like and also embody communion/community with the multiple prints. 

DSCN3696  The metallic-ey green is just too heavy at the top so I do know for sure that this piece will be cut up instead of keeping it a whole panel.   The names you see in the bigger letters are names found in the cemetery where many of my mother's side are buried.  The underlying poem written on the cloth is about a visit there some 18 years ago.  I was newly pregnant with my youngest son then.  The poems, the quilts, the children all help me keep and mark time, I don't trust my memory alone.