Friday, October 21, 2011

Encaustic block

Happy friday people.  Here's a little encaustic work I made at some point in the past week.  Working small now, hopefully will have a studio for the winter set up and functional in the next few weeks. 

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Fantastic ESL video

I was directed to this video by the NHTESOL listserve, I think by Karen Guoyette.  It is very well done, and is a perspective of the ESL classroom that doesn't get a lot of attention.  I thought it was worth posting here, please check it out.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Dia De Los Muertos Show is Up

Lunar Boy Gallery in Astoria, Oregon (yes, home of the Goonies) has up their Dia De Los Muertos show this month in celebration of the holiday.  It opened October 8th, and Deborah (the owner) allowed me to participate in this fine event.  I made two small acrylic pieces for the show, heavily based on typography.  Here they are;

In making these two paintings, I got to thinking.  I am a white girl from New England making works of art influenced by Mexican culture with the intent to hang in the Northwest, paintings that will most likely be sold to white people.  How disconnected can you get.  By the time my artwork is processed and sold, it retains no connotations to the religious background the Mexicans pay tribute to with this imagery.  Really, how could a person in my position do this theme justice?  (These ideas influenced the first piece, as you may have guessed.)  This is neither good nor bad, but what I am curious about is: where is the value?

The role of the themed group show in a small art gallery is interesting.  What is being sold in a group show has a lot to do with the curation of artists' styles, and it seems the theme tends to be used as a homogenizing vehicle.  Is it possible to find much depth in a piece of artwork in this situation?  Is an artist able to give a singular piece enough mindfulness and reflection?  Can this even be quantified, or is it not important?  I can't say as I know.  So if depth is not what we're going for, what is?  To answer this question is not easy.

This is no judgment on the works hanging at the Lunar Boy Gallery, as you can see from the link the pieces are of high quality and are a good grouping - Deborah succeeded in a fine showing.  What intrigues me is the context and the motivation, which it seems is a significant factor in any piece of art.  With respect to motivation, it is unlikely I will ever paint Mexican cavaleras again.  Somehow it seems disrespectful.  On the other hand, maybe I'm over-thinking it...