Monday, September 22, 2014

What I did in Greece between classes...

 This year I had a little time for some fun... I was inspired by some dried artichokes that the goat farmer shared with our group. Quickly done gestural and contour studies of the 'choke, each one done in less than 20 minutes. Acrylic on paper, 12" x 14".

And an image-collection trip in an old village on Skopelos...

Art, Intuitively, in Greece, September 2014

For the second time in as many years, I led an art workshop on the magical island of Skopelos, Greece, in the Aegean Sea. My good friends Tom and Isabel Dempsey, directors of Island Center for the Arts, sponsor teachers each year to lead classes.
The Minoan Snake Goddess became our muse this session.
Again, I had a stupendous group of women as my students. I am awed by their bravery and honored to have been part of their creative journey. Each came with her own reasons for being in Skopelos. I watched as the group bonded, laughed, cried, and created together. And what amazing work was made!

We're all turned out for a night of Greek folk dancing on Tom and Isabel's beautiful patio. I am fourth from the left in the yellow blouse.

The view!

The food!

Yes, that is a bunch of grapes hanging overhead.

Gelli plate printing works so well to stimulate ideas.

Plastic tarp on the floor of our outdoor studio allowed us to let the paint rip and drip.

Accordion books are a perfect format for containing many of the drawings, prints and paintings

Travel journals were turned into an art form, bold, colorful, and full of personal resonance.

Rubbings of textures we found on our image collection trips made their way into travel journals.

The Greek alphabet mystified and attracted us.

Two color Gelli prints of our Minoan Snake Goddess muse.

Sculpture made from ocean detritus.

Sculpture inspired by roadside iconostasis.
We painted to music, worked on travel journals, went on image collection trips, studied positive/negative and contour line drawing, did Gelli plate printing and action painting, participated in an Exquisite Corpse game that generated a wonderful poem, intended to visually inspire:

For once, something crazy happened on New Year's eve.
Never play make believe in the sea because the dog is like a sharp Japanese saw.
And when you remember to wake up then you can rise.
But it is always a complete surprise to discover that you can skydive.

A racoon shot the armadillo hiding in the outhouse.
It was smokey and the queen was drunk.
The French snake spoke of crazy ladies alongside an immense belly.
But then the caterpillar crawled unhappily, slowly above the clouds.

..and finally, we created books to hold our numerous efforts.

We ended with a fantastic trip to Delphi where the oracle made her predictions.

Thursday, July 17, 2014


Exposed. is up and open for viewing in Stowe VT, thanks to the amazing staff at Helen Day Art Center. This blog post features a description of my piece, Meander, a collaboration with poet Lizzy Fox.

Friday, June 27, 2014

Meander-ing in Stowe, VT for Exposed 2014

My second collaboration with a poet, entitled Meander,  is now installed in Stowe Vermont as part of this year's Exposed exhibit sponsored by the Helen Day Art Center. Poet Lizzy Fox has allowed me to use her poem, Shedding.

One of the challenges of installing art outside is the weather. Of course, it was raining during the whole time but at least I did not have to experience a thunderstorm, just continuous drizzle. The other factor here is that I had to install along the bike path in the meadow. To be able to see the piece, the weeds around the lawn signs had to be weed whacked. So I can now add to my art skills that of "weed whacker".

This is from my artist statement about Meander:
Plastic lawn signs are ubiquitous. We associate them with unsightly commercialism. They hawk political campaigners, singles groups, pest control companies and realty for sale. Using the format of the familiar lawn sign, this installation subverts  its use as an unwelcome intervention and instead provides a contemplative and interactive poetic experience for the viewer.

The rhythmically-placed placards, situated approximately 4 feet apart,  follow the natural twists and turns of a walking path and make evident the contours of a landscape. The colorful rectangular placards function as visual contrast to the organic shapes of foliage and rocks, and poetry by LizzyFox  provides a further way to interact with the installation and the landscape.

Walking in one direction, you can read Lizzy Fox's poem, Shedding.

Walking in the opposite direction, you see a procession of colors.