Sunday, February 07, 2016


 (Above:  Taking photos of The Cabinet of Curiosities, in progress. Click on any image in this blog post to enlarge.)

I blogged about my solo show, PLAYA: A Month in Paradise last Wednesday after everything was set up and ready for the "First Thursday" art crawl/reception. Much of last week revolved around this existing art opportunity, and Thursday night was truly lots and lots of fun. Yet, I can't let one activity occupy all my time!  There's other work to be done ... including The Cabinet of Curiosities, creating more work for the ACC (American Craft Council) shows in Baltimore and Atlanta, and moving my studio out of Gallery 80808/Vista Studios and into the house!

 (Above:  The new studio at Mouse House ... a work in progress!)

This post is being written as "an update" to these projects-in-progress!  Above is an image of the new studio space.  It used to be a bedroom. Then it stored shipping boxes, suitcases, art installations, and tubs of vintage fabric. Now, it is being converted to my sewing studio!  I've got until the end of the month to complete the task.  Unbelievably, Steve and I are actually ahead of schedule!

 (Above:  In Box CCXII. Unframed: 27" x 15". Framed: 34" x 22". Inventory # 3636. $550 plus tax and shipping.)

In fact, my sewing machines have already moved.  Only the construction of new work for Baltimore and Atlanta can happen in my old studio.  I'm really enjoying the new location.  Like several other pieces finished early last week, this large In Box was also stitched at home. I've got several other pieces in various stages of production.

 (Above:  Detail of hardware used to attach a made-in-Peru decorative mirror to The Cabinet of Curiosities.)

Every day also finds me adding something to The Cabinet of Curiosities. This piece has to be finished before April Fool's Day.  Why? Well, that's the day I've rented a pick-up truck to take it to Lake City, SC for ArtFileds, a nine-day festival into which it was accepted for competition.  I really love working on this piece. All sorts of unique items (generally purchased for "a song" at Bill Mishoe's weekly "junk auction" on Tuesday nights) get included. Holes were drilled into the corners of this small, decorative mirror.  I could have simply used an ordinary screw ... but why? The attachments are generally combinations of found hardware!  This is so much more fun!

I bought three of these Temari or TemariKai balls at Bill Mishoe's for $5.  You couldn't get me to stitch one of these precise objects if you put a gun to my head!  Definitely, these are "curiosities".  I did nothing more to them ... just put them in place. 

I also bought this strange brass wall hanging ... and simply screwed it onto one of the legs of the clothes drying rack that is part of the cabinet's foundation.

Years ago a client gave me two clip-on mice. One day, I clipped them onto the cabinet.

I also pulled out the found metal objects with cording that I made while at the Anderson Center's art residency program last May.  This one was actually titled: So Obvious It Might Bite.  They are perfect for the cabinet.  (Click here to see the blog post from Minnesota.)

I've found several other, interesting objects from Bill Mishoe's ... like this polished stone and grout ball ...

... and this aluminum cross ...

... and recently two sets of Russian nesting dolls.  I almost didn't use the dolls.  They looked too new, too touristy, too much like cheap souvenirs.  So, I decided to use my dremel tool and some sandpaper on one set.  Once the shiny lacquer was gone, they looked better.  After applying a little chestnut stain, they looked much more like exotic, foreign objects from long ago!

I drilled through their bases to attach them to the cabinet.

(Above:  Aldwyth lecturing on her Dada installation at  701 CCA.)

A week ago I also took a break.  I went to 701 Center for Contemporary Art to listen to Aldwyth's lecture on her Dada inspired installation. I've admired Aldwyth's work for years. At 75, she's still tackling large scale collage, complex work rich in history made by someone whose compulsive sensibilities are so familiar to me!  It was a great afternoon!



Julie said...

Quite an undertaking moving your studio. Good to hear that you are ahead of schedule.

Shannon said...

The self portrait in the cabinet of curiosities is pretty cool. I wonder if there's a way you could include it inside the piece?

Wanda said...

You are so busy! What wonderful, cool and curious items. I love seeing it all!!