As a daughter, Mother's Day was always a holiday that I acknowledged (I think!) out of a sense of gratitude (in my best moments) or perhaps obligation (in my less than best moments). As a mother, Mother's day feels a little different. Not quite a birthday, but a unique holiday for me in my family. I always like to get flowers because this is such a great time of year to get things moving in the garden. Everyone is different about how they acknowledge this special day.
Wikipedia, Mother's Day was created by Anna Jarvis to celebrate her own mother who had been an advocate and worker for womens' health and sanitary conditions. The holiday became an opportunity for the floral and greeting card industry to sell more stuff, a development Anna Jarvis deeply resented. Jarvis actually spent the rest of her life fighting what she saw as the corruption of a memorial to mothers and objected to sending printed greeting cards calling that practice "lazy" vs. writing a letter. (sounds like a bit of a perfectionist?) Well, I disagree and love to recognize my mom (with printed cards and sometimes flowers!) and be recognized by my son and husband. I know they will buy me a card and some flowers. If I didn't make my own vases, they might buy me a seed vase or tea pot.
However you acknowledge the woman that made your life possible, I do hope you will do it with style. And enjoy it with her if you can!
Thursday, May 02, 2013
Monday, April 15, 2013
I have always been inclined to try my best. Whether that means to make the best art I can, or be the best friend I can or mom or wife, or, and now this category has been growing during the past few years, citizen. I try to be the best citizen I can. That said, and what, you may wonder, does that mean? I think the environment matters a great deal in fact I think the environment is of the utmost importance. The environment, of course, includes nature but nature is by extension all things if you really get down to it. That means where I buy (and sell!) my stuff matters, a lot. What I eat for dinner matters, a lot. Where it came from, how it was grown and who grew it, how they were treated or are treated, and how much did they get paid all matter a lot.
These get to be very complicated issues very quickly. One way to keep a slightly tighter handle on the ins and outs of what is actually ethical living is to do as much as possible locally. Now, this is by no means an absolute. But, it can represent a significant percentage of where I spend my dollars and in turn where I sell my work.
Of course, trading far and wide is a wonderful way to broaden my work in the world and I love to do that. That doesn't mean I neglect the neighborhood that I live it and as I grow in this place I make more of an effort to be sure my thing are available in their best light in local shops.
So, last week I set up a nice fresh batch of Faith and Wisdom cups and plates at the Grainery, a wonderful health food store on Main Street in Chatham. Kathy and Chris run a sweet business with a long history. Keeping it local! More of that all the time.
Sunday, March 31, 2013
Thursday, February 21, 2013
The Seed Vase Project is an artwork I began in 1998. I make these little 3" high vases periodically and send them around hither and yon. Spring is a great time of year to bring them back into the mix because they are such perfect bud vases. Tatiana has been loading a new batch into Etsy so I thought it good timing to revisit here.
Each vase is numbered as an act of numbering a opposed to an edition. That way, the sequential nature of numbering creates a connection, a thread between the vases. I have been writing about networks lately and the seed vase project is perfect example of a potential network. The numbering connects each owner of a vase to any other owner. In fact, this connection might be seen as a way of relating to another, a sort of fraternity of seed vase owners, art collectors. The Seed Vase Project itself is in fact a global scatter piece, an artwork, living in homes from New York, to Los Angeles, to China, Japan and Germany. I see the Seed Vase Project as the world's largest artwork in fact, consisting of all these discrete objects, a diaspora, like seeds scattered to the winds, taking root? In an imagination somewhere -- evoking friendship, kinship, love.
Wednesday, February 13, 2013
For 25 years, I was basically a vegetarian. Then, I got pregnant. A couple of months into my pregnancy I started craving beef like it was going out of style. 18 years later and I have never looked back. Well, I have been living in the country for the pat 12 years and have always tried to be a conscious eater. Moving to a rural community really shifts that consciousness up a few notches. Now my standards include mostly locally raised, grass fed and free ranging meat, poultry and eggs. I don’t eat a ton of fish anymore, tough to find super high quality fish this far inland and frozen lacks appeal.
|Hester and Ermengard proudly display their wares.|
(sheep skin waiting for the tannery in the background)
So, one of the ways I get my meat is from friends and neighbors. I have been living here long enough now that I know many a farmer and have sought out people that grow sustainable meat. My friend Frances is one of these folks. She has just started raising lamb in order to sell and I am the lucky recipient of the first batch. Sisters Hester and Ermengard proudly hold up the two packages I bought yesterday for a lamb stew I plan to make tomorrow. This is life close to the bone, so to speak. Not only do I know where this lamb came from, I probably know this lamb personally! Not to befriend or anything, that would be weird, but well enough to know it had a good life, was very healthy, and the meat is of the highest quality.
Life in the country these days can be an especially perfect place to settle. Coupled with the economic engine of a regional city, in this case New York and Boston, both communities, both types of people can be deeply nourished. I do believe a rural/urban symbiosis is on the horizon. Already happening and certainly a traditional arrangement, perhaps the re-emergence of more local networks can in fact help a healthier, economic as well as physiological, community unfold.
Thursday, February 07, 2013
|Photo stylist extraordinaire|
OK, looks like snow starting tomorrow here in the east. I have been going to Boston regularly for a class at Montserrat College of Art (that has been awesome!) but my trips have been foiled of late. This weekend is another class, but alas I am afraid I will miss my peeps because of the latest snowmaggedon predicted for the east coast... Hooray! Hot off the press... my class is cancelled! I am so happy I won't miss one. These are courses geared toward the professional development for artists and have been super useful.
Tatiana and I are debating shopping excursions. I did my food shopping this morning, phew! and she needs to hers done before we are all stranded in our cozy cottages for the weekend. Many options for snowed in projects. For sure I am making chili tonight or tomorrow. I put all my ingredients into the slow cooker and leave it on and voila! Chili, a perennial cold weather favorite. Served up with shredded cheese, chips and salsa or even over salad for taco salad, proves a hit on the homefront.
|Justin casting Waterworks rectangle trays.|
Thanks for reading!
Tuesday, February 05, 2013
In February I get more deeply obsessed with hearts than usual. This year I have carved out a little heart shape with dots to impress into some small oval dishes. These make great soap dishes or ring dishes. A little gifty for your sweetheart. There are a few left in Etsy shop and they ship within 24 hours.
Last week I went to Sketch in Hudson to make some more Valentines with friends. Funny thing, I get nervous making art with other people. Even silly little things like greeting cards. I guess I prefer to make things in private.
That said, I do like to participate in creative acts of conviviality. Getting together with friends turns me on. Preferably over a meal.
A friend of mine stopped by over the weekend and picked up a platter she had purchased at one of my open studios. Her hubby George Gruel took this photo of it installed on her dining room table. I love getting in situ shots.
Thanks for stopping by!