The Generosity of the Adorned Surfaces of Amanda Manitach, come watch her work at TPR, Aug. 15-20

This week, August 15th – 20th, Guest Artist Working, Amanda Manitach will be working in the studio with me, using The Project Room’s large lovely walls for drawing, and other things! 

Amanda’s hours in the space: M, T, Th, Fr, S; 12 -5 pm

I adore Amanda Manitach’s work.  In some ways, it is so divergent from my own work, yet, I feel like our brains and eyes flit across baroque surfaces, seeking similar heightened sensations.  I also sense a kinship in what I feel is her practice of probing the abject body from a care-taking stance.  Whether she is painstakingly sewing onyx beads onto a lamb’s tongue, meticulously recording and inventing the convoluted ruffled forms of disease and erotic cavities in graphite, gilding a pig’s head, dissecting the ways words expel from the body and mind, there is always care, love and reflection…and even temperance.

Amanda also brings a generosity to the way she interacts with the creative community of this region;  she curates, she writes, she analyzes and researches, she gathers people together.  She shows up and participates, and contributes; not to shine a light on her own efforts, but to celebrate the works of those that she find invigorating.

Initially, I asked Amanda to come work with me at The Project Room on a simple impulse.  We both spend, long, long, long hours doing tiny movements, she with graphite on paper and me with stitches and loops. Especially with the palette of my new work of silvers and grays, I thought there would be this curious tension between an austerity and the desire to accumulate to the point of excess in both our practices.  One week of work for either of us is a drop of water in a sea of labor….what happens when we put a microscope on that drop.

As par for her course, Amanda has contributed so much already to my time here at The Project Room, and to TPR’s mission in general.  She was a guest artist at the Defornament talk, and a contributor to the “Artist’s Who Interview” roundtable (including transcribing the conversation, helping me to create a record of that lively discussion soon to publish!)  Watch out very soon on The Project Room’s literary journal ‘Off-Paper’ for some of her own deeper analysis of what it means to wear the multiple hats of artist and writer.  I am so looking forward to spending this week, looking further into the generosity and furrowed planes of Amanda Manitach.

I’ll be writing more about this in a bit, but just a heads up…we will also be joined on Friday from 4pm – 5:30-ish, for a Guest Artist Conversation by multi-media, movement and dance artist Keely Isaak Meehan, artistic director of ‘Manifold Motion’.

photo: Carolyn Isaak

photo: Carolyn Isaak

We’ll be talking about her work as well as her own practice as a Certified Movement Analyst using Laban/Bartenieff & Somatic Studies, and how this may help me unravel some of my impulses to use my own body (as well as my husband’s) to explore this new work in Solstenen.  Please join us in conversation, and some light refreshments.

Advertisements

Many Thanks to the crocheters of Aug. 2, please join us again Tomorrow!

EVERY last crochet event I have held through the last several years of projects has had a slightly or radically different sense of group dynamics, I can’t help but notice it, sometimes it’s striking.  Some people naturally and effortlessly and generously make other people comfortable.  I can’t say exactly that I have that skill, but it seemed like last weeks crochet party on August 2nd was a magnet for people who quietly yet energetically like to get to know about others around them.  It was wonderful to watch unfold.  So thank you, you congenial bunch!  And I know I’ll see you again, because you all told me you’d be back and I take you at your words!

Anyone wanting to learn to crochet, or learn to crochet more intuitively, or learn about the ever-unfolding spirit of human community, please stop in tomorrow, August 9th from 3:30 – 7:30.  And join in!

And just a note, though I haven’t changed it on the Calendar of Events yet, I am cutting next week’s crochet party on August 16th short, just till 6pm, because it’s my son’s birthday and we are going on a date.  Thanks for understanding the change.

sweet babies show up at TPR

sweet babies show up at TPR

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Guest Artist Event, this Sat. 8/6 – Cameron Anne Mason does “low tech” dyeing demo, 11am – 3pm

Shibori - stitching before dyeing...

Shibori - stitching before dyeing...

I’m so excited, a messy, hands-dirty guest artist event will bubble over in The Project Room this Saturday with dyeing genius Cameron Anne Mason. Life seems just as messy and bubbling over with intense and sometimes difficult emotions, the chaos and uncontrollable forces of water, dye and hands creating the unexpected into pattern is a welcome reminder that things out of our control are not always to be feared!

I first met Cameron while I was working on Mater Matrix Mother and Medium in 2009, sitting in the middle of Greenwood Ave, during a street fair.  She came up to me with a little bag of blue scraps and a lot of encouragement for that brand new community project that had me a little overwhelmed.  From time to time, she has given me her fabric scraps, the edges of larger dyed panels she has made to create her sculptures.  Perhaps because they were tiny and so deeply varied with layers of what looked like splashes of volcanic lava, they were precious to me…I crocheted them into installations in places that I would remember.

While I have dyed fabric before, I have never explored the possibilities of creating patterns.  And with Solstenen, with no material budget at all, taking all the old white fabric I have and turning it into something intensely layered is very appealing, especially with my sense of a volcanic fluidity I get from Cameron’s patterns, and my fascination with the volcanic activity just below the surface of Iceland….I somehow make a connection.   I want to know how she does this stuff.  So she has generously given me a Saturday to watch her do some of these techniques, which happen to have a very “low tech”, jury-rigged, use-what-you-have approach (which I love!), and YOU and anyone who would like to watch her with me are invited to come!  Please join us this Saturday August 6th, 2011, from 11am – 3pm.  All the materials will be here, just come with your curiosity!

“Fiber Dyeing Demo: Low Tech Methods for Low Water Immersion Dyeing

Cameron Anne Mason will work in The Project Room with Mandy Greer to show methods to use fiber-reactive dyes to create color and texture on fabric. These simple techniques are easy enough to use in the home studio but are endlessly variable. Basic dye chemistry and shibori techniques including binding, pleating, and wrapping will be covered.”

Cameron will also be back to talk about her work and process…..

“August 11th, Thursday, Solstenen Guest Artist Event and Community Crochet, 5 – 8pm; drop in during Blitz Capital Hill Arts Walk for crocheting, and at 6pm join artist Cameron Anne Mason for a follow-up talk after her demo on the how and why she creates pattern in fabric

Thanks for coming to the opening Solstenen Community Crochet Party on July 14th!

Community Crochet 7/14/11

Community Crochet 7/14/11

The Project Room and the Solstenen project opened last Thursday July 14th with a crush of warm feelings from supporters and people excited about the new energetic art space on Capital Hill.  I saw many people I’ve met through my crochet parties from the past few years, many artist friends and art supporters, and some people just curious about the lively activity going on inside!

Tessa, Anne, Julia

Tessa, Anne, Julia

Thank you to everyone who stopped by, and for some really generous donations of new materials to work with (some very special handmade garments/linens I’m looking forward to dyeing and deconstructing and reconstructing!)

Jenifer Ward, Paul Pauper

Jenifer Ward, Paul Pauper

One thing I hadn’t realized until people started coming in and I was setting them in motion crocheting;  usually at crochet parties I am a lot farther along in a project and I have an agenda/need (“need more thick ropes, need round parts, need ruffles”).  This crochet party was essentially the very first stitch of this new work, literally.  I was shrugging my shoulders, ‘the concepts are developing, so please just enjoy crocheting’, was about all I could say.  Take pleasure in the materials, think of it as doodling or drawing, just play.  Usually this messing around for me is done alone, in private.  The first shrug of my shoulders, I felt a bit vulnerable, ‘shouldn’t I know?!’.  No.  It all starts this way, all generative work, not knowing.  Especially with this work, I want to fend off the external and internal impetuous to ‘know’ everything, especially with the environmental installation component of the project to take place in Iceland.  I want to respond intuitively to a place I find; yes, with thread and ropes of time spent where I came from, like the baggage we literally and figuratively drag everywhere.  But still to push and push to stay in the moment of the environment.

Jennifer, Aurora

Jennifer, Aurora

So thank you everyone for just diving in; it seemed people were excited to just be with the process and be with each other.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

And Thank you Project Room family Van Nostrands and Smiths. This is what it looks like to give birth to a baby and open an experimental art center in the course of 30 days!

Jess opening doors

Jess opening doors

There is a subtext to many of my discussions about this project of mine, about blending daily life, family and a passion for ideas and making.  I really feel quite privileged to get to watch Jess Van Nostrand kick ass at this delicate dance we do to carve out a place where we can do what we need to do feed our work.

Erin, Troy, Jen

Erin, Troy, Jen

Much gratitude!  And please join me again on Tuesday July 19th, 3:30-7:30pm, as we do it all again!