Tuesday, February 03, 2009

catching up

Monday dawned bright and warm -- a mid-50's February day. We met at Hollie Heller's house and as we sat in her studio, surrounded by her amazing work, we had a couple of visitors come right up to the glass studio wall. They just stood and stared at me as I took their picture. It seemed like forever since Studio Six (our crit group) had met -- and we were all happy to see each other and catch up. Need I say that I had nothing to show? I actually forgot to bring my two art cloth entries for the Art Cloth Network's "Quake" exhibit -- but I couldn't have found them under all the cartons, anyway. I finally unpacked them today. Here is Rachel Cochran with one of the surface design pieces she has just finished. There is another one in the series and the group's concensus was that she should not make quilts out of them: they are perfect as art, just as they are. It is difficult to think differently after eons of assuming that everything should be layered and stitched -- but sometimes it is just overkill. Rachel, who has just written a wonderful article for Surface Design Journal with Judy Langille on whole cloth composition, is an expert on antique quilts and was one of the authors of the definitive book on NJ antique quilts. When I met Rachel, she was doing more traditional work and she still loves it - but oh, my, her surface design talent just shines these days! Diane Savona, who just won a Fellowship from the NJ State Council on the Arts (along with Joan Dreyer, another member of our talented group), showed us a work in progress and explained what it was about. Her work is unlike anybody else's: in fact, I can say that about every member of Studio Six. We all continue to evolve in different directions - all unique, all exciting. And we are so lucky because we respect each other's opinions and admire each other's work. Kerr, whose first meeting with us was yesterday, brought one of her beautiful garments -- she must have been explaining something as she looked down at it when I snapped the picture. She had some questions about fit and asked a couple of people to try it on so she could see if it worked. It looked fabulolus! Interestingly, a number of us are at a crossroads right now: tired of what we've been doing and wanting to stretch and go in another direction but unsure of what that will be. Personally, I hate being at this point, even knowing every artist goes through this periodically -- hopefully before a growth spurt! Nonetheless, it is agonizing. For me, no time to fixate on it: the rest of the week is filled with health checkups that are long overdue -- and I hope the weather cooperates. Then, Saturday, I am teaching Gelatin Printing at the Arts Guild of Rahway. There is room for one or two more in the class, so if you haven't taken it and are within driving distance, check it out. The snow plows have been up and down the street while I have been writing this. Earlier, I had to take these photos of my woods.I never get tired of looking at them and they are I hope you don't, either. Virginia Spiegel invited me to donate a piece to FFAC's 2009 Reverse Auction and I offered one of my favorites, "Whose Woods." There will be a larger image and a detail on the auction site. As a cancer survivor, I am happy to donate this work to Virginia's fundraising efforts. All proceeds from the sales go directly to the American Cancer Society. The preview and actual auction will be linked from http://www.virginiaspiegel.com/NewFiles/ACSFundraiser.html

7 comments:

Gerrie said...

Mmmm! I love that piece you are donating to FFAC. It may want to come to live with me.

Eva said...

Thank you for sharing the links to these talented ladies! Most amazing for me is Diane Savona.
The winter pictures are beautiful. And how you transferred the view into a print!
And The "visitors". A digital Bruegel.
What a pleasure to get the glimpses of your art life again!

Judy said...

What a stellar crowd in Studio Six! I loved Judy and Rachel's article in the new surface design mag.
Whose Woods is simply amazing. I love the background color and yet the starkness of it. Really captures a very cold and still winter morning in the woods.

xo

Sue in NJ said...

No deer in my yard today, but I did have two orange tabby cats!

Russ Little said...

Ahhh, what a meeting that must have been. I tell you, there must be something in the NJ water! Send me some.

Margarita Korioth said...

What lovely pieces, always an inspiration for me when I visit your blog. It is also cold here in the south....

Rachel said...

Rayna, you are too kind. Thanks so much for your thoughtful observations. I had more visits to my blog than ever!

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