Thursday, June 30, 2005

keeping busy

Attempting to distract myself while I wait for a phone call from the surgeon, I'm going back to the workshop at PV that got such short shrift earlier on. Is it a pancake turner? Nope, it's a frying pan full of wax. The grid is iron and is one of the items I used for batik, along with the antique potato masher whose handle is sticking up. I haven't photographed much of the fabric, but I will. In the meantime, here is a bunch of it hanging on the line to dry. And below is a close-up of one piece which two people fought over when I showed it to them. Solomon would have approved of the outcome. IMG_1247 Thanks, by the way, for all of your good wishes about my mother's surgery. Surgeon called at almost 2:30 a.m. - everything looks ok. I am going to sleep.

Monday, June 27, 2005

blog this (long)

IMG_1293 Originally uploaded by raynag.

It's been a hectic week in my household. On the plus side: our friends Marlene & David were here visiting from the UK and we had a happy time going to the new MOMA, the NJ shore, and some other day trips. Marlene is a fiber artist whose work is always strong and just keeps getting better and better; David is a comedian (in every sense of the word). On the minus side: coping with my mother's impending surgery and as I write this, I am waiting for a call from the hospital that there is an available bed. Need I say that I can't concentrate on anything much? Nevertheless, a few images from last week's workshop with Fran Skiles. It was a bit of a stretch, working entirely with paper and paint on canvas -- but an interesting experience. We began with black & white and by the time we had worked and reworked the pieces, they had changed. Not, I might add, always for the better. But change is good and I will be interested in seeing which parts of this process will creep into my work. Here are the changes in this piece:
IMG_1309 IMG_1362

urania1 Originally uploaded by raynag.

Here is another, which I really preferred as a black & white piece.


urania2urania3

And this one

IMG_1303 which turned out like this IMG_1356

Interesting way to work - layers of paper, silk, paint, ink, and other goodies. And the hospital beckons, so I'm outta here. Will post again when I come up for air. I still have pictures from Els' workshop and lots of thoughts which may never see the light because I'll probably forget them by the time I have a minute. Thanks for coming back to check whether I'm here.

Tuesday, June 21, 2005

goodbye Columbus

IMG_1274 Originally uploaded by raynag.
I'm home from both Peters Valley and QSDS - enough workshops to last me for a while. Both were great experiences in very different environments and for different reasons. Apologies to all of you who have been checking my blog for new stuff, but it was impossible for me to post while at QSDS - too busy and then too exhausted. First, some views of Short North, the arts district of Columbus. Isn't this sculpture great?
On the OTHER hand, it was a bit disconcerting to see notices like these posted all over town:firearm sign Then again -- there were wonderful murals all over town. This one was guaranteed to make us smile! IMG_1327 We ate well (off campus), shopped well (at the Blick store as well as at Chico's) and enjoyed the Columbus Art Museum's collection. As far as QSDS itself was concerned, it was a great experience. More in the next post.

Friday, June 10, 2005

up on Thunder Mountain

IMG_1249 Originally uploaded by raynag.

The fiber studio is about 3 miles up the hill from the rest of the village so there is lots of room to spread out. Here is Els, outside in the tent, heating the wax and starting to demonstrate working with batik. The copper tjap is in the wax and is heating up enough so she can print with it. Els works mostly in silk and makes drop-dead gorgeous fabric. Here is one example...IMG_1241

We worked with tjaps (copper stamps) but also with found objects, which you can imagine played perfectly into what I do. But now I'm too tired to write more and I am leaving for QSDS tomorrow so I will try to write more before I leave. If not, I am taking my laptop with me and I'll post from there.

Peters Valley -- a little background

IMG_1225 Originally uploaded by raynag.
I'm back from Els van Baarle's magical working with wax workshop (try saying that 3 times fast!). This was the view from the fiber studio. Peters Valley was once a lively village -- till the federal gov't condemned it in the 1960's because they wanted to flood it and build a dam and recreation area. The village, which had been there since the 18th century, was seized by eminent domain and everybody was evicted. Years went by and the dam project never happened. The derelict buildings remained -- and Peters Valley Craft Center in rural New Jersey was born about 30 years ago. Nationally known for its blacksmith studio and ceramics -it has a wonderful fiber studio, photography, jewelry, and other courses. The building on the right used to be the post office; now it's the craft gallery. And the wonderful Greek revival building was a hotel and is now empty.
IMG_1272
IMG_1266 Originally uploaded by raynag.
Barbara Conte-Gaugel and I roomed together in this once-elegant home that is now being restored. It's next to the blacksmith shop and last time we were there they banged and hammered and kept us up all night long. This year's group became our friends.
IMG_1270 Originally uploaded by raynag.

In case you wondered what the fiber studio looked like - here's the outside. It's about 3 miles up the hill from the village. Nice space, lots of paints, dyes, and discharge stuff available. And WAX. Els told us to bring UGLY fabric and I had a ton of it. I'm really sorry I didn't take before and after pictures because batik is a great way to improve your dyed fabric failures!


Wednesday, June 01, 2005

it doesn't feel like June

Gorgeous weather that should have been here 6 wks ago. Tomorrow I leave for Peters Valley and batik -- and hopefully, I'll have some goodies to post when I get back after the weekend.