Saturday, July 10, 2010

In the flow

This one is not finished yet. The blacks will be darkened, some whites will be added. This one is called Broken Memory. I'm not thrilled with it, although I like it better in jpg form. This one, completed last night,I am happy with. With this one I am beginning to get a glimmer of the content I am working with. I always work instinctively, driven by materials and some small object or mark to begin. I never see the finished artwork in my mind's eye. I simply begin. But When or Where to begin is always mysterious. It began yesterday afternoon when Zach and I were working on a CSS template together for the gallery. Suddenly I knew I had to begin. I hung large paper and made a yarn-like mark on it and got back to work on the CSS (I learned a lot, by the way.) After dinner the real work began. My hands are gritty, with compressed charcoal ground into the cuticles. I am happy. Several days ago I was wondering if this flow would ever return. Artmaking is so mysterious, a difficult task master/mistress.
So, what am I working with? It seems to me that the issues of memory, aging, nostalgia remain key. All the drawings refer to yarn in some way. Indeed, I am surrounded by it in the studio. As I draw, I think of the deep history of yarn making as functional, needed, mostly women's work. In the New England colonies, households were taxed according to the spinners therein. But here, in the 21st century, I explore handspun yarn as art with a history. In the drawings, it is as though the yarn elements are fragments and arteries of the deep unconscious, of the deep memories we are born with.

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