Sunday, September 26, 2010

Unity in Schisms (what the what am I talking about now?!)

DSCN1592 The Beauty of Holiness Studio, my art making sanctuary

Odd, ... I cannot recall ever being this excited about Mondays when I was employed.  Sundays now are a signal to re-engage fully as possible with my creative mind.  Sundays are filled with thinking about the different pieces of cloth and quilts in their variuos stage of development and what needs to be stitched and the hows and wheres of it all. 

Last week I dye painted over previously painted cloth.  The cloth was not treated with soda ash and I used Afterfix on it which is used to set dye.  I've used this before and was fairly pleased with it...the colours appear to me more muted and toned down then with soda soaked fabric.  I keep returning to this method because I do anticipate, possibly, at some point I may not be able to physically handle low-water immersion dyeing.  This is the piece I'll rinse out tomorrow if all goes as planned:

Over the weekend I attended a state meeting of SDA members that Jennifer Reiss and Mary Nehring coordinate.  This was the 2nd meeting but my first.  My membership in SDA has lapsed but renewing it is on my goal list for the coming year.  Being around other artists and diverse minds gets me spinning like a whirling dervish and I left there thinking that its not so much the lack of opportunity that seems to describe this city/state (although the description can be dead on) it is the fact that I cannot attend to all the possibilities. 

In my own art I can say that I now have a focus, sense of purpose, and a vision...a "Karoda" way of working...but I'm also fertil that when I see the art of others my mind automatically begins to push, combine, play, stretch, mix, mingle, and so on, ideas and what ifs and I'm flying or whirling and it feels fun in the moment.  I've learned to reel myself back down...took me a couple of years but I'm good to go and can now say to myself "okay, Karen, settle yourself down".  I think many artists experience this and in turn are faced with juggling the solitude activities with communal activities and how both impact creativity. 

I also attended the tenants' meeting at Mellwood last week and Planet Janet and I will be coordinating demos and activities by the tenants who want to participate in November's Trolley Hop.  Studio spaces are getting new tenants and I hope this is some indication that economically people are feeling more daring and confident.  Many of the new tenants seem to be more retail/service oriented.  A fitness center, photographers, martial arts, florists, etc.  I hope this will not eventually increase the dirt cheap rents for the artists like myself who are solely using the space to create in, but overall, it is good to see fresh eager faces and more activity.

Speaking of solitude and communal, I figured out why I'm not partial to listening to music on an iPod.  I like my music to fill not just me but the space I inhabit.  I want the essence of the sound to rock the cobweb in the corner of the ceiling...I want the vocals to ooze down the walls...I want the rhythms to cover the floor.  This just doesn't happen using an iPod.  I can listen to podcasts on my iPod, no problem...but the music is too big to fully enjoy it that way...and I'm not talking about the volume of the music but the experience of it...listening on an iPod diminshes the experience of the music, the artistry that went into it.  Playing a cd is much more inviting for a shared experience and much more open experience.  I mean would you rather go to a museum or look at the art on a toy view finder?






  1. your analogy concerning Ipods and art museums is dead on. Also I have been thinking a lot about the solitude versus socialized creative venues. Our move has brought me to an extremely isolated existence; I have to *want* to be out and about and inter-mingled in order for it to happen. What I'm finding is that ... I really don't want to make that kind of effort. Would rather but attention and focus on truly personal development. At least not at the moment. There's something very liberating (as well as healing) in the simply contemplation of inhabiting mainly A Room Of One's Own. Have been seriously contemplating upping the stakes even further and taking the late autumn and winter season "away" from blogging and the internet. I just want to see what happens when it's really an organic matter of me, myself and I.

  2. whooaaa, Acey, took my breath away with the idea of abstaining from the internet lol... but i was telling Peter yesterday how observing people walking around (especially young people) and it appears that 90% of them are plugged in even while out and about via their cell phones! Its been close to a month that we've been w.o a cell phone and although its been inconvenient...I could get use to not having one. I hardly use the line lines at all (email is my preference) anymore and watching tv is not much on my radar at all (put it on public radio if you want me to know about it, cracking myself up here)...any way I've been contemplating the nature of whether a revolution could take place off the grid and still have an significant impact in the fabric of our culture.

  3. Yes, your analogy is great. I like playing loud music in the car as I drive around by myself. I love getting out into the natural world.
    I am glad you had a good SDA experience. I love the breadth of work and the innovations of SDA members.

  4. Do you car dance too?
    Several of the folks were students of Arturo Sandoval at Univ. of KY and I knew some from the local fiber group I belong to but the meeting took place in a lovely quaint town of Versailles where the heart of the horse farms and bourbon production are. It was a beautiful day for it but I was a little nervous about riding round with the Obama sticker and the bumper sticker you sent me on my car...but all went well and there was good diversity in the members art.

  5. It's a really potent question that you pose.  Last year I read a provacative book - Overmediated by Thomas de Zengotita.  He proposes that techno-culture, and over exposure to an endless choice factor becoming the dominant lifestyle, have stripped us of personal and collective authenticity   He suggests the only way to get a glimpse of such experience is to get lost (he specifies in the canadian prairie but I think there are other, uh, *choices* of places that would serve just as well) on a road with no cell phone reception.  Even then I was thinking "but wouldn't the GPS (presuming one has one - we don't but so many do) still be working and thus keep you plugged into the grid?"  As far as my notion to radicalize my personal existence - I've always had an intense love-hate relationship with the internet.  As you rightly point out
    there may not be much potentiality in an unplugged revolution - at least not one that's optional rather than globally circumstantial - so perhaps it is simple indulgence on my part.  But I've been reading a lot of Al Young and seriously that man shakes me up in such GOOD ways. I don't want to opt out as a way of making a socio-political statement so much as I want to explore what a sustained hiatus may offer to the process and product of my writing and visual expression ...