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IMG_1674Some of the trees in our woods were cut down yesterday. Maybe thirty trees. The tallest one was taller than our house. I felt like it had feelings. The man who owned the arbor company said it was a “weed.” I guess he knew. A lot of pruning was done. And now when you look at our woods, it’s not thick and black like a jungle. Which is good.

He was very knowledgable about the trees. As we made our way into the jungle a day before the buzzsaws and tree shredders started, he pointed out the different varieties of trees by name. I swatted mosquitos. He talked about this one’s leaves being good for making tea. And this one needing to come down because it housed insects that killed the other trees. One, he said, was even struck by lightening!

Among all this learned pointing, was a Southern Coastal monologue about almost everything else. He used the expression, “She was as country as a ham sandwich!” He made me laugh as I itched, wanting to get the heck up the hill to air, daylight and bug spray. He spotted a little patch of something and he said, “That’s a white oak.”

White oaks surrounded The Twin Towers in New York. When we were at The 9/11 Memorial, the permanent one, recently completed, white oaks were replanted around the Memorial. The leaf was used in the museum. Every person killed in the attack was represented with a photograph, several times. Those whose picture could not be found, were assigned a white oak leaf with their name underneath.

I thought about the footprint of the North and South Towers and their massive box like fountains, which is now the Memorial. The space above them remains empty in honor of the people who had worked in those buildings.

Sort of like my tree that used to tower higher than our house. Its spirit still there. But this big empty sky now visible.

Piece Of My Heart

The Hambidge Center For Creative Arts And Sciences. Every year, for 19 years now, Hambidge has had an auction to raise money for its wonderful artists’ mountain retreat.

This year, the Goat Farm Arts Center in Atlanta will be hosting the auction on May 31st. I have been asked to donate two pieces, one you see above. It is a drawing on Reeves paper, done with pencil. Reeves paper is so soft and special, it is an artist’s secret for making the pencils and erasers glide over the page. Darks are darker, and it is easy to erase. Lovely.

Some of you bloggers are familiar with my dislike of titles, but this one I just had to name “Water on Paper.” I think it is appropriate.

If you are in the Atlanta area May 31st, there is not a more interesting event to attend. For more information, click here.

Day Sixty-Nine/Image Sixty-Nine

“Afloat” Image. Ceres Gallery. New York. Solo Show.

The basement studio is almost finished. Everything in it is white. Floor, walls, table, brick wall. I am even spray-painting random “junk” items to reside there. Still keeping my studio downtown, which remains my sanctuary.

Everything is crystal-clear in my studio downtown: focus, attention to detail, ideas. It’s a wonderful space, located in an historical building on the National Historical Building Register. Heat is negligible. And in the summer it’s very hot. Peeling lead wall paint and asbestos flooring (which I covered with particle board.) An earthly place. I can totally relax.

There, the floor and walls are white too, as color is important to me. Do you know that surrounding white extracts a small amount of color out of every color? When I paint there, I make the colors brighter. When work is in a gallery, the effect is the same. Hence my desire for white. I wanted to be working on things as they will be seen.

Recently I hung a painting of mine, not too large, maybe 36″ x 48″ in a patron’s (Is that too pretentious?) office. The man has taupe walls and some blue on an adjacent wall. The blue “matched” and the taupe “matched.” It sold the painting. I have to admit, the colors were exactly were the same. My purist preference would have been, to have him appreciate the artwork on its own, which he truly did. But the matching, well you know….. To sell a painting is so wonderful, but to sell one appreciated on its own terms is even better.

Again, white is everywhere. To keep me on the right path.

Day Sixty-Eight//Image Sixty-Eight

“Afloat” Image. Ceres Gallery. New York. Solo Show

I am transitioning out of my present blog format for a very good reason: Showing the 100 collages in my current blog format is coming to a close. (We are on “Sixty-Eight”) To make the transition easier, (soon) , I am planning to blog about other art-related things interspersed with continuing to post the “Afloat” collages until I reach the 100. I will ease out of the front and center visual and few paragraphs of copy into something else.

I have a fear of boring my present followers. I am taking a risk. First, I have tried to keep my blog short. And primarily visual. People do not have time now to do anything but scan.

I am scheduled for another solo show in 2015. A solo show requires me to spend at least an entire year to bring it to its conclusion.

In addition to planning what I will do for the blog, I must first plan what I will do for the show.

And part of the blog material will come from experiences with my new studio and my old studio. Successes and challenges with technique and subject matter, (I’ll keep problems with people to a minimum), materials, time, commuting back and forth for supplies and to work.

I won’t show any finished work, I don’t think. Since the exhibition is for that. I will focus on experience and process. Even in my “Afloat” blog, where I showed finished pieces, I described process and sometimes I drifted into memories. This too will happen. I doubt it will be a “How to Put Together a Solo Show” type of thing. I’ll just see how it goes.

I am not ready to break away from these little collages yet, however.

Day Twenty-Two/Image Twenty-Two

“Afloat” Image. Ceres Gallery. New York. Solo Show.

Image twenty-two (got the number right this time) is probably my least favorite of the one hundred collages in the installation. Of course, the stats on WordPress, if they are accurate, will show that everyone likes this one the best, as has been my experience before.

I don’t know why. I just think I should redo it. Add some people. Put in an urban background . Mix it up a little. I was on my “round-things-are-light-and-airy” phase of doing these collages. Before I slipped back into tidal waves and destruction.

Maybe if I had a tidal wave in the background coming at the ruins, it would be more to my liking……