Saturday, November 19, 2011


I am having another show in a space which is part of an alternative health care office,  called  Post Urban Contemporary Art.

Though it may be a bit small and get crowded quickly if I have a good turnout, I like supporting local business, especially in the alternative healing world, where you are offered non pharmaceutical/non invasive healing options, whether chiropractor, naturalists, herbalists, etc.  This office happens to be home to the practice of acupuncture.

The office offers several halls and a central room to hang "Little Stories", my body of surreal narrative collages/mixed media works.  

I still have to lay out the pieces, figure out what works best together, and then frame a few that I have not framed yet.  Framing is NOT my favorite part of the business, and I am hoping that I can farm out some of the work to someone else. Like the mat cutting.

Off to the art supply store (the non-Michaels one) to see what frames they have.  I am going to try and recycle some of my frames so I don't have to spend more money, but I need at least one square frame which I do not have in stock.

The life of an artist, especially one who has a full time job, is BUSY.


Next blog: My new Facebook page, Art for the 99%

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Dinner at Peekamoose

I moved to the Catskills in 1969 at the Lolita ripe age of 12. The next 7 years were some of the worst and best years of my life. Most of my life lessons, disasters, pain and joy came from that period.

Tonight Larry and I went to the Peekamoose restaurant in Big Indian, 2 miles from my old home.  The last time I had been there it was Rudy's...a very hip place,  in the mid to late 70's. I think I rode my bike there, 2 miles  *uphill*  to meet a friend for lunch.

Now, some 35 years later, Larry and I dined in luxury in the same spot. The red Panasonic bike (which I still have) was left at home -we took "The Silver Bullet".  I am no longer the wood nymph of my youth, instead slowly becoming  a cover girl for a Renoir painting.

Since I left my memory card at home, my shots were taken with my Droid. Not great in low light. One of my few Android complaints.  Tonight's photos are of the Nevelson inspired wall, and the other of my brain...ha ha.

BTW. The food and service were excellent. Fresh baked herbed foccacia with tarragon butter, a Ciroc martini that came with the shaker. I often judge a restaurant by their drinks and bread...  we were off to a good start. The rest of the dinner was equally as pleasing, and Kaitlin, our waitress, was a delightful country girl who has traveled Europe and speaks a few languages. The other pleasure was seeing one of my students working as one of the staff.  She was a great young lady, and it was a joy to see her coming into her own....bought me back to my own youth working in the restaurant business..but that is for another blog.

Off to rest..under the heating pad!

Friday, November 11, 2011

When I'm 54

Hudson Blues

 Reservoir Storm
I need to start to get rid of art in my studio so that 1) I have more room 2) I need to raise money to keep my studio's propane tank full all winter, as well as for framing for upcoming shows. It is expensive to be an artist, and I am finding out, very hard work. Still have the day job, but am gearing up to retire from teaching, and then go full time as an artist.

I know that artists are not supposed to sale their work out.  But in this economy, artists need to be savvy, inventive, hustling marketers and sales people.  And as long as I get something for my materials and time and love that goes into the work, and it goes towards keeping my creative space heated so that I can keep working, it's all good. And YOU got a great deal.

So in celebration of my 54th year on this planet, I will be listing art for 54.00 which by the way, is 50.00 plus 4.00 NYS tax.  If you live far away, I will ship the cheapest but most safe way. The small canvases are light, so it should be inexpensive.

I am starting with these two oil on canvases.  They are both composites of the Hudson River and the Ashokan Reservoir.  I say composite because though they are based upon Hudson Valley locations, some of the actual elements of the landscape are altered/deleted and even totally changed. In these paintings, the local landscape serves as an inspiration for a painting, and is not always a literal interpretation. 

The Hudson River painting above measures 11 x 14", and the Ashokan Reservoir below measures
8 x 10".  They pop into a standard size frame from your local art supply store (I try to use them rather than the huge mega stores like Michaels..) and voila, you have a painting on the wall. I don't think I have signed these, and will do so if you desire. My canvases are always signed on the I don't like to sign on the front, but have learned that I really need to do it. Not worth being turned down by a gallery or considered unprofessional for no signature/initial on front. 

If interested, the link to my email address is here on my blog page. Go to My Profile, and click the link that states: View my complete profile.   Or some of you FB me, or have my email anyway!


Sunday, November 06, 2011

Spirit Photography

I have so neglected my writing, but not neglected my art. 

ONE of the most moving things I have done was take a workshop at the John Dugdale School of 19th Century Photography and Aesthetics, on Spirit Photography. (check out the link to understand what that genre of photography is as it is important to the story below) The photographs were done using the wet plate method of photography, and I made three ambrotypes.

The school is on a back country road in Stone Ridge NY.  It is a simple two room studio, filled with light and heated with a fireplace in one room, and an iron stove in another. Candles provide the lights in the evening for lectures and movies, though there is electric to run modern conveniences such as a projector and CD player for the classical music that drifted through the studio as we worked.

I did not make the wet plates - master Tom did that, and we were assisted by the fabulous Jenn, Helena, and Emma. 

I chose to interpret a 19th century painting by Dante Gabriel Rossetti, titled Astarte Syriaca.
Armed with gowns, a crown of flowers that I wove from the field, and a few other props, I made my interpretation of the painting.  It is amazing that this is on glass, and that I can scan it to make a positive print.
  John worked with me to make two spirit photographs that are narratives about my father.  My father and I did not have a good relationship, and when he was diagnosed with cancer during my first year of college, we were not allowed to tell him that he was going to die.  It was a very sad time, and the one thing that hurt me dreadfully was being robbed of the opportunity for us to make our peace before he passed.  After years in therapy, I realized that he was only doing what he knew best, and that he must have been a damaged child or young man to have been so angry and abusive. He was a tortured soul and a very hard man to live with. 

John helped me work out some ideas, one being a photo of me looking at my father's childhood pop up book which I have treasured over the years in spite of it's poor condition, with my father looking over my shoulder.  The other is a simple photo of me with my hands in prayer, and his ghosted image in front of me, with his hands over mine.The experience was amazing. 

The other workshop attendees were fabulous as was the staff.  It was a Zen like setting, a Zen like weekend, and I went through a spiritual transformation on many levels. I am grateful for the experience and recommend taking a workshop with John when he starts up his classes again next year.

I also had another opening (for the same painting show) and am getting ready for another solo show of my collage work in December, as well as my annual craft fair through the Unison Arts Center.  I have two works of art at WAAM .

As the holiday season approaches, remember to buy from local artists and artisan, from small local mom and pop stores. Avoid the malls, Walmart, Target, and put you money where it will really help the economy and give it to the 99%.