Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Keys, Nails, and Doors: Personal Grounds


(My studio and the start of an installation. Click on image to enlarge.)

Earlier in the month I wrote about a "foggy vision" for an installation. I was wrapping rusted nails and contemplating the symbolism of keys. I envisioned an old door with peeling paint, an entryway or physical representation of life's many decisions. Well....I found four of them. This weekend Steve helped me install them in my studio...now a place of tiny little passageways through piles of material and fibers! While many bloggers were tidying there work space as a New Year's resolution, I've evidently gone in the opposite direction.....and I LOVE IT!


(Click on image to enlarge.)

The vision is now a little clearer, but it has a long way to go. Keys in boxes, not quite accessible. Keys with wordless tags. Nails, wrapped and unwrapped, hammered into doors and lovingly in containers. The installation will be my contribution to the annual spring event called Artista Vista. The artists with studio space at Gallery 80808/Vista Studios always participate with an exhibition. The title for our show is going to be Personal Grounds! How perfect!


(Above: View from the door to my studio. Click on image to enlarge.)

To me, personal grounds is a place. It is a place one finds by life's decisions; the doors one opens; the keys one turns, the nails one uses to join life together and the nails of sacrifice. Though just at the beginning of this installation, I've already got a title, "Decisions".


(Above: Key to Happiness. I used embellished and stitched vintage fabric...dyed during my "month of backgrounds". Click on image to enlarge.)

(Above: Key to Prosperity. Another handmade cord and tag with a key on an embellished and stitched fragment. Click on image to enlarge.)

(Above: Key to Knowledge. Embellished scrap of a vintage lace tablecloth.)

(Above: Key to Her Love. Embellished and stitched fragment of vintage brocade. I'm hand distressing and finishing all the frames too.)

15 comments:

Mary Catherine Dabrowski said...

WOW, Susan--what a wonderful installation you are working on. I was intrigued by your rusty keys and nails in your previous post. I love everthing about your installation--the theme, the framed pieces you've done so far, the doors, the look... I am in awe of your work. I look forward to viewing the installations process.

arlee said...

Very cool to see the progress of an installation piece through the design process--i've never had the opportunity before to see that and am very intrigued. I actually love the (temporary :}) idea of passages and doorways in your work space, a labyrinth of discovery and revelation. Wonderful!

Jacquelines blog said...

This looks very exiting. I am very curious how you develop this. I am very fond of installations.

Doreen G said...

Wow Susan what a great installation I love the rusted keys--the distressed frames--the doors-the lot.
I am blown away by it all.

Sue B said...

Love the concept of this installation Susan. It's fantastic. It's always a treat to visit your blog, I always leave inspired!

Alis said...

Great work as always Susan.
I love this installation and the great keys.

Wanda said...

The framing is awesome! And the keys are so symbolic

Dianne said...

Oh how I would love to wander through your studio and view your keys and doors - fantastic!!

Micki said...

What a wonderful way to interpret the theme. Love the art pieces.

Sara said...

hi Susan, I'm very impressed with your art and your doors are such a good background! (I have a soft spot for white painted doors and windows as you know!)
It would be wonderful to meet you in Sweden! I actually have no addresses to help you with a form...I only know the lady who spoke with me. her name and email address are Pian Bates pianbates@comhem.se if this is of any help...:-)
keep doing such a great art!
sara

Sara said...

hi Susan, I'm very impressed with your art and your doors are such a good background! (I have a soft spot for white painted doors and windows as you know!)
It would be wonderful to meet you in Sweden! I actually have no addresses to help you with a form...I only know the lady who spoke with me. her name and email address are Pian Bates pianbates@comhem.se if this is of any help...:-)
keep doing such a great art!
sara

Pat said...

What is it about peeling paint that is well....so appealing:-)
I like the bits where the handles have been which show the wood underneath. I would want to wander in and out and round and round and to try and touch the keys. Your studio looks like a treasure house and you have a dragonfly on your wall, did you know that dragonflies have smiley faces?

Karen said...

Old rusted Keys and peeling painted doors. Really texture rich! I like this and am pleased you showed us how it came to be. Your foggy idea turned out superb!

Anonymous said...

So nice to see your work and share in your thinking. Interesting to me, as a non artist, to read the comments of other artists. Love you, Mom and Dad

Nikki said...

I love the doors!!!