Friday, August 9, 2013

Tempus Fugit round-up

can you spot the micro-ants?
First (shameless self-promotion ahead ;)) - check out this lovely article by John Seven in the North Adams Transcript about the show! I think it's well-written, and it really does sound like me :). The North Adams show has been extended until September 3rd, so if you missed the opening - there's still time and another DownStreet Art Event on August 14th. 

I've been a laying low a bit lately still trying to catch up on some of the things I put off or let go of to get ready for the show.  I installed a new drainage pipe for the sump pump, have been working in the yard, and had help from lovely friends with painting in the kitchen and healing the electricity (thank you!! I have lights in the bathroom and, very important, the socket for my coffee maker is working - ahhhhh - happy human!) And I even got in a little baking - cinnamon brownies with dark chocolate and mini chips and mini chocolate chip cookies (yum).

Last week's scavenger hunt was fun, but it did draw my attention to how important my environment is to me. I've been trying to get my space clean and tidy, to inspire clarity in the studio. 
I made the frame too :)
I feel like I'm behind on everything and am in denial that it's August. Last week marks the one year anniversary of the start of the Tempus Fugit Project - an experiment in time/space management to maximize the expression of art-devotion! Since Tempus Fugit was conceived as a year long project, I've been reflecting this week on whether to extend the project or let it end.  In some ways the timing is right to let it go - the concrete goal was to create a body of work that reflects my devotion to art, and with the opening of the installation at Gallery 105, I feel like I have a chance to show an almost entirely new body of work created as part of the project.  
Haven't you always wanted a horse painting the size of a domino?

In other ways, I feel like I haven't quite reach my goals yet. I imagined the project as having more than 8 phases (conclusion: things often take longer than I expect). There have been some major space changes in my life over the past year - I moved 1000 miles across the country, and visited Virginia, Colorado, Chicago, Vermont, New York, New Jersey, Massachusetts, Connecticut, and Georgia. I feel like I found the right place for myself and my work and am working out a balance of travel vs. staying put; but...I'm just starting to look at time changes and how to take steps towards focusing more of my energy on art-making and scaling back on some of the non-art things in my life that draw off a lot of energy where and when possible.
put a bird in it ;)
My favorite tree

I'm having trouble letting go of the project, and I've been asking myself whether extending the project will really be productive or if it's just a way to delay having to face one project ending before I'm ready to start another?  This does tie in to phase 8 - not all time is the same (find focus) because, while I can pour lots of energy into a project, sometimes it's hard to shift focus once it's done (like too many other possibilities become "suddenly" visible all at once - for more about the effect of attention on perception - check out the "invisible Gorilla experiment" discussed by Daniel Kahneman in Thinking, Fast and Slow.) In terms of not all time being the same, I'm eager to get started on the next project because summer is when I have the most energy to start new things. 

So I got to thinking... (uh oh!) When it comes to art-making - I make lots of mistakes, but I'm persistent (check out these first, second (third) tries from the North Adams show: (#haha)
 I've been thinking that maybe I'll do the same thing with the Tempus Fugit project - try again and refine based on what I learned the first time around. The project was supposed to be cumulative, but I did a better job maintaining some of the principles than others once my attention shifted to the next phase. So I'm thinking - the ones that were more challenging to maintain, I'll try again, and the ones I did better with, can be  short or replaced with something new.  That way, there will be a chance to practice the things that could still use more work while also adding new things to keep it moving forward. And the whole project becomes a repetition with variation (and I do loooove repetition with variation - on the "things I like" list!) 

Round up:
Phase 8 - Not All Time is the Same (find focus) (June - July 2013) - still working on it so hard to gain perspective yet, will check back
Phase 7 - Look for Patterns (then do something) (April - May 2013) - love this one (maybe my favorite) - check!
Phase 6 - start from what you know and build from there (or practice, practice, practice) (February - March, 2013) - this new iteration  totally counts on this one, and I got going in the studio again by making minis this week - gold star!
Phase 5 - be brave, every decision involves loss (December - January 2013) - still working on this one
Phase 4 - acknowledge limits (November - December 2012) - fail
Phase 3 - dwell in the house of possibility (October 2012) - still much to be done, but overall - thumbs up 
Phase 2 - be prepared for good things (August - October 2012) - trying, but I may need to re-strategizes on this one
           2b - take time for meaningful rest and reflection - fail 
           2c - build to last - getting there    
           2d - lay the foundation for giving - yay - this one is lots of fun  
Phase 1 - do/make the work (July - August 2012) - this first - Always. 

Double  kitties -  a repetition with variation
Even funnier - what's off camera?
 They're both staring at they're food  bowls.