Last Friday I went to the opening of the Art in the Metroplex show at the Ft. Worth Creative Arts Center, where my piece “Anomaly” was included in the exhibit.
A tradition in the area since 1983, the show was founded by a group of artists including Beth Lea Clardy, in collaboration with Texas Christian University Art Department faculty and staff. In 2014, the show was moved to the Fort Worth Community Arts Center. This year, over 200 artists entered the competition and Juror Peter Doroshenko of the Dallas Contemporary selected 34 pieces of the 600 submitted. (source: fwcac.com).
The show is up through October 29, so stop by and see it if you’re near downtown Ft. Worth. There are some fantastic exhibits in the nearby museums (including Kahinde Wiley at the Modern), so make a day of it!
Productivity is never pretty around here. Making art is like childbirth to me. I start out hopeful and full of promise. At some point it makes me sick (I call it the “ugly phase”), but I keep going, knowing it’s worth the struggle. And toward the end, I will do anything – endure any torture – to get this thing finished and out of my space.
I have been finishing three new comissioned pieces – I just returned from installing one, and two more are awaiting delivery this week.
Meanwhile, my studio is ashambles. Unlike childbirth, there is no nesting going on here, just complete violent, creative chaos.
As I came back into the studio this afternoon, the amount of stuff I have strewn everywhere is insane. Paint, dirty brushes, bits of cut paper all over the table and floor, awaiting placement on some collage or journal.
Project ideas, notes scribbled on lined paper that was torn out of some book. Scissors, glazing medium, screwdrivers, nails, art supply catalogs, plastic bags, ideas for teaching art projects…
But it means I have been making art, and that is good.
The A/C went out last week, just in time for summer’s last stand. Fortunately, I am married to quite a handy man. He’s helping me out by installing a fan today. Come on, cool weather, I need you.
And, athough I’m exhausted, I’m really thankful for this hot mess of a studio.
Here are some photos of my current solo exhibit, “Look Around,” which opened on Friday, January 9 at thegallery8680. It was a bitterly cold night (by Texas standards), but we still had a great turnout.
Robyn always has the most beautiful reception table — a work of art in itself.
There will be a closing reception this Sunday, January 25 from 2-4pm.
I’ll be sad to take it down – I liked each piece in my studio, but hanging my art in the gallery really transformed the work into a cohesive unit. Here are some pieces that will have a new home after the show.
I set a challenge for myself this month to post on my blog daily, and this, my friends, is the final post for the month of April 2014. I did it!
There were days that were a lot more inspiring than others, some very exciting with good news to share, and others that I just didn’t feel so motivated about. But I’ve found that this has been a really good exercise for me — it has kept me focused each day, because I knew I would need to share something interesting each day with you.
Just like my journals, my blog posts are a good resource for me to see what was going on in my life at a particular time.
An overview of this month’s posts:
I have gotten to share some of my visual journals with you, which until this month I hadn’t published online. Posting on my blog daily has encouraged me to finish some of those journal pages that I had started but had been dragging my feet on finishing. See awesome april posts # 1822, 23, 25 and 27 for new journal entries, and I have a new visual journals page that I’ve been adding to all month.
I shared things that inspire me along the way(days # 5, 6, 7, 14, 20, 28) and the advice I would give to my artist self 20 years ago (#16).
My trip to Europe is officially on the books, which is something I’ve wanted to do for a while. It’s been 10 years since I traveled overseas, so I’m happy to have something fantastic to look forward to next year.
You got a few glimpses into my studio (day # 10, 15, 26, 28), and the studio of my friend Jennifer Cowley (day #2). I also shared a few of my art friends (day #11 and # 24), as well as some of my students’ work in progress (day #3).
I’ve had a great month getting my work out there. I revealed the news that I was selected to complete a public art mural for McKinney this spring. ( I’m still waiting on a start date, and I’ll keep you all posted on the latest developments with that project). Meanwhile, I’ve also sold a few paintings this month, and been selected for a juried show.
Thanks to all of you who have been reading my blog this month, and to my new ‘followers.’ As always, I’d love to have comments from you on any of the posts.
I am happy to announce that I have been selected as the artist for McKinney’s first public mural project. Today I was honored to be a part of the official unveiling of my design, during the Arts in Bloom event on the square.
Here you see me with the design, along with some of the Arts Commission members. Left to right is Matthew Bado, myself, Hamilton Doak, vice-chair of the McKinney Arts Commission and owner of Orison’s Art and Framing, and Mayor Pro Tem Travis Ussery. Also in attendance, but not shown: Linda Spina. (A big thanks to Allegra & Helen Minkes for their support and awesome photography skills!)
In addition to the City’s funding, there have been private donors that have also made the mural project in McKinney a reality, so a big “Thank You” is due to everyone who had the vision of bringing a public mural to their city. I’m grateful to have been chosen for the task, and know it will be a fantastic addition to downtown.
I’ve been working on this project for a few months now. After submitting my application in December, I worked on a couple of rounds of designs in January and February. I was notified in March that my design was selected, and I’m waiting to get the go-ahead, once all the details gets cleared through City Council.
For my concept, I went with an Art Nouveau-esque design, inspired by artists like Alphonse Mucha. The design includes cotton fields (a huge part of McKinney’s history), and native wildflowers that have each special symbolism that relate to the downtown area (paintbrush, trumpet vine, wine cup, blanket flower). The actual mural will be even more vibrant and full of detail.
So where will this mural go? Glad you asked! The mural will be on an exterior wall of a downtown building (currently slated to go on the south wall of the Cadillac Pizza building). The finished painting will be 40 feet wide, and about 9 – 10 feet tall, and I estimate it will take 4-6 weeks. I plan on posting pics of my progress along the way, so stay tuned!
While I was there, I enjoyed seeing the other artists working live out on the square. I was excited to meet Lynne Hubner, a very talented and skilled printmaker. I had seen and admired her work before, and she currently has a great exhibit of her prints at the front of Orison’s gallery. She was super nice, and I was even able to pick her brain about some of her printmaking techniques. I’ve got my eye on a couple of her prints……. you can see her work at lynnehubnerprints.com.
And I also had to stop and meet this artist, as I had watched his painting progress over a couple of hours. Being a fan of color, I was impressed with his use of complementary colors (green/red is a difficult combo to make look good, but he’s doing it!), and his expressive use of line. He told me he has a Facebook page of his art, so I’ll need to check that out.
Tonight I got to meet up with some of my fun artist friends at a local hangout here in Frisco, Eight11 Place. They have a great back yard, and it was a perfect evening to sit and sip wine, have a little flatbread and do some art talk.
Eight11 Place opened up in September, and has become one of my favorite places to meet up with friends. It’s in a little historic house on Main Street, and the proprietors, Lance and Ursula Clayton, are fantastically fun people. They are super supportive of local artists, and host new art shows there every couple of months. (I got to show my work there a few months ago). I didn’t know this at first, but Lance and I are both from Fannin County – me from Windom, and he from Bonham – and we know a lot of the same people. And Ursula brings the Austin vibe of casual sophistication into the mix.
Artist’s conversations are so robust and colorful! I enjoyed hearing stories about childhood, travels, jobs, families, art shows, life challenges, and even getting to hear secrets about certain attendees’ former lives of dancing on tables and singing “Moon River.”
I was having so much fun, I only got a few poor snapshots — but here are some of the artists who were there – click their name to see their artwork.