Wednesday, November 16, 2011

No Room For Sublimation? or What Exactly Are We Sublimating & Why Is This An Acceptable Way of Doing It?

Please take the time to watch both parts. It's a 45 minute discussion by Jean Kilbourne, Ed.D. about media literacy and how advertising targets our most intimate and vulnerable selves (our psyche). *My plea below.

It is imperative that we recognize subliminal and direct referents in marketing and how it affects us, our social norms, and the future world we are building for our children. I have to admit that I teared up a few times watching this as I recalled receiving the harsh message at 8 years old that I am not good enough and then at 14 that I am the sum of my body and nothing more. I also recognize that I am still receiving and believing that message nearly 30 years later but more disturbing to me is the fact that it takes someone else pointing it out to me before I am awakened from my complacency.

I am a well educated, emotionally supported, adult woman with a well developed ego and strong social consciousness yet, after watching this talk, I immediately recognized ways in which I personally comply with these messages every day. I have to admit that I have relatively little contact with television or magazines but as Dr. Kilbourne reminds us, these messages are everywhere we look, everywhere we go, including the sanctuary of our own homes. By accepting these images we are condoning dehumanization, sexualized violence, the sexualization of children, and sending a message to advertisers that this is appropriate and acceptable for our lives and our childrens' lives. Does anyone really want this to be the social norm for our kids or for ourselves?

I started my purge last night by taking a hard look at the images I've made over the years, what kind of language I am using in them and whether it is edifying or detrimental, I've eliminated about a third of my work. Today I am revisiting the products that I purchase and deciding if I plan to continue supporting the very institutions that are stripping me of my human liberties. This is something we DO have power over and CAN change and it starts with the most powerful thing in the US...the consumer {aka YOU}.

Friday, November 4, 2011

Starling Fever

I am so ready for winter. Today I went shopping with my mom and EVERY store was decorated for Christmas. It isn't even Thanksgiving yet! I took this as permission from the universe to head straight home and pull out my Christmas decorations. I {LOVE} Winter. Anticipating winter made me think of starlings and as fate would have it, I came home to my friends and their fb posts of the following video. Here is my tribute to starlings. Lovely birds with a lovely name.

Murmuration from Sophie Windsor Clive on Vimeo.

The Starling by Amy Lowell

Forever the impenetrable wall
Of self confines my poor rebellious soul,
I never see the towering white clouds roll
Before a sturdy wind, save through the small
Barred window of my jail. I live a thrall
With all my outer life a clipped, square hole,
Rectangular; a fraction of a scroll
Unwound and winding like a worsted ball.
My thoughts are grown uneager and depressed
Through being always mine, my fancy's wings
Are moulted and the feathers blown away.
I weary for desires never guessed,
For alien passions, strange imaginings,
To be some other person for a day.

Friday, May 20, 2011

Pilobolus perform "Symbiosis"

Love me some Ted Talks and this one is supreme in my book. It's humorous and exquisite. See for yourself.

Monday, May 2, 2011

Jennifer Georgescu

It's one of those situations where it hurts but you can't stop examining it. I met Jen during my undergrad where we found that we were driven by similar concepts and both have a fondness for manufactured realities. We still spend time showing work to each other and eating copious amounts of sushi and this makes me pretty happy. I urge you to visit her website and take a look at her work. I think you will all love it! {click here}

Monday, April 11, 2011

Daniel Lai

I participated in a group show a few years ago titled Works With Words at the Nashville Public Library. The artists involved represented not only book art but also painting, mixed media, photography, and sculptural book and paper works. I met Daniel at the install and found him to be incredibly generous and kind. In addition to the altered book sculptures above he also creates what I would call pyro-portraits.

He is represented by Estel Gallery in Nashville.

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Singer Sewing Machine Orchestra

Sewing Machine Orchestra is a sound and light performance by Canadian artist Martin Messier. The eight 1940-1950s Singer sewing machines are interlinked with a micro-controller system without need for human interaction.

hahaha and wow.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Jan Svankmajer

Recently a friend gifted me with an example of the Quay Brothers stop animation, The Calligrapher.

I hadn't seen this one before, but after viewing a few more I recalled having seen the Quay Brothers many years ago. I can't remember where but it left me with an unsettled feeling that reminded me of a time about 10-12 years ago when I developed an interest in surrealist films. I spent a lot of time pausing the frames on unusual compositions and writing about what I saw there. One filmmaker that I seemed particularly drawn to was Jan Svankmajer. I often found myself sitting a friend down in front of the television and putting on a Svankmajer stop animation. Most people were repulsed by him which I never understood. His films are difficult to sit through, the pace is painfully slow (like chinese water torture), although it is worth it to find those hilarious moments. He has a wonderful sense of humor. There was one film, however, that I really enjoyed being swept away by. So much so that many years later I subconsciously based a series of photographs on the work. That film was Little Otik. Netflix it some rainy day.

Friday, April 1, 2011


Pages cut from the circumference of a hollow log divided into four codex bound books of equal size. It appeals to my love of binding durn near anything, and it makes an interesting shape, but it seems kind of lame doesn't it? I haven't made up my mind how I feel about it.

Friday, March 25, 2011

It's a Sparrow Day

I'm in the bindery cutting out lots of tiny sparrows for Lesley's beautiful book. I can't wait to give it to her. In honor of these little paper sparrows I thought I would post some of my favorite sparrow related things. Happy Friday!

Anita Carter's voice is filling the bindery today.

Helen Beard's watercolored ceramics

Monday, February 28, 2011

Little Golden Books Exhibit!!!

I always had lots of Little Golden Books as a kid (Mister Dog was my favorite) and I STILL stop and look at them every time I am at the grocery. I have a small collection dating back to the 50s but I am always looking for more. Today I found out about an Exhibit titled Golden Legacy: Original Art from 65 Years of Golden Books

This exhibit will present the most extensive public showing ever of original illustration art from American publishing’s best loved and most consequential picture-book series, and guess what? You are in's nationwide tour has not missed us here in the South! Here are some dates and places:
6.25.11 - 8.14.11 : Lexington Public Library, Lexington, KY
9.24.11 - 1.1.12 : Greenville County Museum, Greenville, SC
9.2012 - 12.2012 : Cincinnati Children's Museum (Tenative)

Friday, February 25, 2011

How to Marble Paper - Easy

How to Marble Paper

1. Fill a cake pan with water and a drop of dishwashing liquid.
2. Drip paint slowly onto the surface of the water so it floats. Use acrylic, oil, watercolor – any thin liquid.
3. Swirl the colors gently with a stick.
4. Curl the edges of the piece of paper up to form a U shape and dip the paper in the water center first, then lower the edges into the water.
5. Immediately remove and set aside to dry.

Friday, January 7, 2011

One word I would banish from the dictionary is “escape.” Just banish that and you’ll be fine. Because that word has been misused regarding anybody who wanted to move away from a certain spot and wanted to grow. He was an escapist. You know if you forget that word you will have a much easier time. Also you’re in the prime, the beginning of your life; you should experiment with everything, try everything…. We are taught all these dichotomies, and I only learned later that they could work in harmony. We have created false dichotomies; we create false ambivalences, and very painful one’s sometimes -the feeling that we have to choose. But I think at one point we finally realize, sometimes subconsciously, whether or not we are really fitted for what we try and if it’s what we want to do.

You have a right to experiment with your life. You will make mistakes. And they are right too. No, I think there was too rigid a pattern. You came out of an education and are supposed to know your vocation. Your vocation is fixed, and maybe ten years later you find you are not a teacher anymore or you’re not a painter anymore. It may happen. It has happened. I mean Gauguin decided at a certain point he wasn’t a banker anymore; he was a painter. And so he walked away from banking. I think we have a right to change course. But society is the one that keeps demanding that we fit in and not disturb things. They would like you to fit in right away so that things work now."
~ “A woman speaks: the lectures, seminars, and interviews of Anaïs Nin” by Anaïs Nin

Saturday, January 1, 2011

A pleasant way to spend the afternoon

1. Make a cup of tea in your favorite mug.
2. Go to YouTube and search for experimental animation.
3. Enjoy a lovely afternoon watching cartoons.