Monday, June 19, 2017

at the Albany Institute

Kind friends, Tom and Taylor McGill came with me -
 Tom took this picture of me being my awkward,
 but art-happy self. 
It was a very exciting week!  I traveled to the Albany Institute of History & Art to attend the opening of the 2017 exhibition of Artists of the Mohawk-Hudson Region. 

I was very excited to meet juror Jack Shear, museum staff, and fellow artists, and see the exhibition. The work was awesome - I especially enjoyed the mural by Richard Barlow, multi-print polyptych by Tatana Kellner and forest scenes in charcoal on mylar  by George Dirolf.

Three of my collages were included in the show (remember when I was packing them a few weeks ago? ) It's very rewarding to see them up on the wall and nicely lit, away from the studio (fly from the nest my little art-fledglings :) ).

Tom and Taylor checking out the collages
I also have exciting news - Raptor and Automata was selected by the Albany Institute for purchase!(!!) This makes me very (very) happy, knowing it's found a wonderful art-home ( - it's one of my favorites - the gold in the raptor's eyes is especially nice, and it's one of my favorite set of blocks (a digital version of that particular raptor hangs over my mantel)).

I also was surprised and honored to be the recipient of the Stuyvesant Plaza, Inc. Award :D - this was very fortuitous timing, as I am running out of ink, paper, and (soft) blocks (haha). I also foresee a drying rack in my future (steeples fingers).

As (incredibly!) exciting as the exhibition opening was, work continues - I marbled paper and printed the medium rocks and new flowers.

Trying out the new flowers here over the old ones - hmmmmmmm

I also used some of the photos I took last week at the Cloisters to make a template for a new block.  
This is a good example of the digital work that goes into making a template before I start carving. I started with a photo I took of part of the border of this early 16th century tapestry.  I then worked with it (and worked with it) to get it into a simplified black and white image in the scale and proportions I want.  I printed it (with a computer) onto transfer paper, then print it (manually) onto a toned block (MDF in this case). Then I add and subtract and refine with pen and/or marker directly on the block.  Then I start carving - trying to combine the design elements in the template with the feeling/ memory of the thing (in this case a branch of a rose bush). In this one, I'm moving from the bottom to the top, working from large tools to small. I run progressively darker markers over sections in progress to try to get a sense for what marks are showing up.  For me, this is a sort of a chance to swing the other way after doing the turret (which contains lots of tiny straight marks).  I used a medieval tapestry border as the source because the block is intended to make up part of the border of the pseudo-tapestry.  

I had excellent feline assistance on this one...

...and three days later...

In puppy news - Honey has discovered my (and, critically, the kitties) bed.  She used to be afraid of the stairs and so, until now, never went into my bedroom, a scenario the felines were quite content with, but she seems to have conquered her fear and overleapt piles of laundry, and snuggled right in to the pillows. My Princess' face said "fix this, human, fix this now," while Honey looks like she's hoping if she stays still, I won't see her (luckily, when I put her leash on and said "walk?!" - she trotted to the door - good Pup!)

In non-art news, I've been defining my garden beds with blocks
and brick and put in cedar around the borders - thumbs up.