and, Jem. we’re all atwitter about Jem.
So, I’ve been ears deep in writing (and playing the most massive game of catch-up from the Winter Holidays–seriously, who even thinks having three massive obligation-celebrations within a 6-week period is a good idea?), and that means I’ve been neglecting y’all.
My poor, poor darlings.
I really need to do these posts more often so they’re not so fucking long.
On the upside, I’ve pick-up writing a twice-a-month meta column on Welcome to Night Vale, which is a-MAZ-ing.
Seriously, I’m never going to get over getting paid to write about things that I read, watch, listen to.
Best gig is best.
And, in Art Land, I’ve started as sketch-a-day project to get me drawing everyday (because I’m honestly kind of suck out loud at drawing. DON’T TELL.) and trying new things in a low-risk kinda way.
The results are happy-making for the most part.
My favorites so far are:
Tentacles and WtNV are definitely things that happening. *hands*
I–haven’t processed the photos from the Steampunk Show Opening (not that there are a lot because I didn’t really take any during the Opening since there were THINGS going on that I had to handle), but there are better ones that these.
The Festival of Lights in the Church of Αρcετηεθτηισ
(The Moon, The Deep, and The Devourer)
Αρcετηεθτηισ, oh triadic wondrous horror,
illuminate the darkness of winter
as the light waxes and wanes
and the night envelopes us
Αρcετηεθτηισ, all hail!
The Moon, The Deep, and The Devourer
each in their orb
awaiting cold (re)birth
—a fragment from The Words of the Devourer by Τηεοσιδ, Third Speaker of Αρcετηεθτηισ
The Dress Uniform of Leftenant-Colonel Αβιγαιλ Ποδεσ, Order of the Silver Octopus
This is the dress uniform of Leftenant-Colonel Αβιγαιλ Ποδεσ, Order of the Silver Octopus and Oathsworn Protector of the Realm, 7th Regiment under The Victoria Elisabeta the Second, 5th in success of Victoria the Great, may She live in Αρcετηεθτηισ’ eldritchian splendor forever and ever—Madness Be!—who decreed that the Empire, long may it shine, should forever and always be ruled and protected by the women of Her realm.
These’ll suffice for now, yeah?
The Steampunk Show goes down the 30th, so if you’re wanting to see it, best get to the ARTgarage Tuesday or Wednesday.
And–the new Quarter starts Saturday, so that’s also a THING I’m working on.
It–doesn’t really have a name yet. Something about jellyfish and lightboxes and phoenixes.
So, really uncomplicated.
And, if that isn’t some of the most prosaic wanking I’ve ever written. Sheesh.
I’m finishing this year with two new (very intense) works from my studio made in just the last month (and maybe a half…I can’t remember when I started the dress uniform, and I’m feeling to lazy to check).
So, here they are (in Instagram snaps because I haven’t processed the actual photos of the dress uniform and the installation can’t really have good pictures of it taken until it’s, ya know, installed): The Dress Uniform of Leftenant-Colonel Αβιγαιλ Ποδεσ, Order of the Silver Octopus and The Festival of Lights in the Church of Architeuthis in the Aspects of The Moon, The Deep, and The Devourer.
A reminder that, in the New Year, y’all will be able to see these pieces–up close and in person–at the ARTgarage in Green Bay.
We’re installing the show on Thursday, and the Opening for The Steampunk Extravaganza is January 9th from 5-8 PM.
I’m putting together a steampunk playlist and everything (like I don’t already have 7 just sitting around on my iPod *whistles*).
We’ve all (nearly) survived 2013!
THE YEAR IS DEAD; LONG LIVE THE YEAR.
*I did not name this show nor was I consulted in the name of this show. I–it’s just a really not-good name for the show.
But, what do I know.
So, yeah, this is why I haven’t really been around, in case y’all have been wondering why I’ve been AWOL–aside from an epic people hangover from T-Day and the writing.
Did I mention that I now have an official title now? I’m a Senior Contributing Writer.
Tell me that isn’t awesome.
So–I’m in this steampunk show, and I’ve been working on a costume because, sometimes, I just really enjoy making wearable art.
But–hey!–I figured new show, new piece (because that’s just the kind of squid I am).
So, the idea for this is an Order of the Brass Octopus dress uniform for a Lieutenant-Colonel, but this is an Order of the Brass Octopus that’s run by Madame Lefoux and is, not only militaristic, but also highly matriarchal.
Remember, this isn’t remotely done yet.
Can we talk about how much I despise setting grommets and how awful fan-lacing is to do?
And, yet, here I am: grommets and fan-lacing galore. *SIGH*
If you’d like to see the rest of the photos documenting this piece so far, please feel free to take a gander at the set.
I have really horrible concept sketches in there. Might be good for a giggle.
Basically, I’M HAVING A SOLO SHOW!
It’s, like, my first real solo show. Of my series spindle’s work, Zellandine’s denouement.
I AM SO EXCITED! (I THINK I MIGHT HORK.)
…should I be being this enthusiastic and spazzy in a public forum? IDK.
Okay, so yeah, that’s kinda where I’ve been: having meetings with the Andrew Linskins, the gallery manager for NorthCoast Gallery (which is part of NorthCoast Productions) and printing cards and working on more pieces and thinking about installation and trying to not freak out every other minute.
So, a full week.
They’re not the best cards ever, but I tried. <–An artist friend of mine thought they were very nice. I’m just happy I could afford to print them.
‘Cause, they look like this in reality:
Yeah. I WANT PRETTY SHINY GLOSSY CARDS.
*kinda sulks inappropriately*
I am, however, attempting to finish this monumental (for me at any rate) piece so that I can hand it in the front hall of the building that NorthCoast is in.
IT’S NEVER GOING TO GET DONE! /o\
…see, and this is why I hadn’t been posting this week: I’m kinda wreck and leaking emotions everywhere.
Pieces! I finished a four-part piece yesterday.
And, they are supposed to go together like this:
This piece is really inspired by spending way to much time on Tumblr. I’m not even kidding.
And, there are classes! Ya know, if y’all would like to take classes. With me. At the ARTgarage. <–I’m totally going to have to create a sidebar with all of the classes. It’ll be less nutty. Right? Right.
Okay. That’s it. That’s the post.
What do y’all think? Of the show? Of the work? Y’all have been so quiet lately.
So, yeah, before I do anything else, y’all have got to go check out the dance sequence in last week’s episode of Bunheads. Just, go to minute mark 39 and watch.
So. What’d y’all think?
Leave your thoughts in the comments, and we can all have a nice chat about it.
Okay, yes, real art-blog business. Right. A real post.
*tra lala la la la la la*
The ADHD is bad today. Sorry about that.
*insert segue here*
So, my studio at the ARTgarage is the size of a sneeze. Totally. Like, if I take Vincent (my spinning wheel) in there with me, there’s about a foot to a foot-and-a-half of space in front and behind me with maybe 8 inches on either side.*
*I don’t know how accurate those measurements are since I have never actually measured when I was in my studio spinning. That’d be weird.
This is the view into my studio coming through another Ahliah Zia Shashonah’s studio. We actually confuse people because our aesthetics are similar enough that it looks like one big studio. It’s not, though.
Most of the work that I do in this studio is pastel work, spinning, ink, bookmaking, sewing, or the occasionally layer media over monoprint (this is still a developing thing for me). I get a lot done in a small space and have some lovely display space.
…it also means that I actually have to talk to people on occasion. If I only worked in the tentacle-made studio at Hemlock House, then I’d probably never speak to anyone other than you lovely people.
I like used atlases too, if anyone has any that they’d like to send my way. Or old books. Or sheet music. Or, ya know, stuff.
Panning to the right, you can see my Ur-bag taking up valuable floor space, my craptastic storage (that’s gotten a bit better, admittedly, since I got a little storage cart that goes underneath the work table), and art displayed from the unnamed friends series, the taxonomy series, the impression portraits, and spindle’s work, Zellandine’s denouement series.
Further to the right is more of my storage, my ARTgarage pastel box (I have one in the tentacle-made studios too), and more of my art: the scrump series, the chimera series, the unnamed friends series, more of the spindle’s work series, and some random book arts stuff.
And, lastly, my easel, which I have had since I was a teenager, with the first piece in the beast series still on it.
So, yeah, that’s my sneeze-sized studio. Come by the ARTgarage, and you might see me in it.
And, since we’re on the ARTgarage and me haunting the place on a semi-regular basis, I’m teaching some classes for them this fall: 3 drop spindle workshops (Sept. 13th, Oct, 13th, and Nov. 13th) and a 6 books in 6 hours bookmaking class (Sept. 29th and 30th). So, if any of those are interesting to you, let me know or check out the classes section of the ARTgarage website.
Mine are not currently listed because they were just turned in last week, but yeah, they’ll be there soon. I hope.
Okay, not really a national holiday or anything, but maybe it should be? Celebrate the preservation of dead animals in life-like poses!
…maybe not. <–Not all my ideas are brilliant.
So, taxidermy. I love me some taxidermy in that art-meets-craft-meets-cracked-out-awesome sorta way. And, a while back, I did a drive-by post on Wren Britton of Pure Vile. (Double-super-secret secret–he’s totally got some taxidermy going on in his work! *EEE*)
Today–today is about other artists that utilized taxidermy
and how I want to be them when I grow up.
So, my love affair with taxidermy actually started with Professional Mermaid, with whom I went to Columbia College Chicago. For her BFA show, she did this really nifty installation that integrated plaster dogs, bleached bones, dirt, and a coffin that she built herself.
Completely shiny. We used to chat about theory (Helene Cixous, specifically) on occasion.
So. My start. And then–oh! and then!–I found Jessica Joslin (somewhere–I have no clue where!).
I love the assemblage aspect of her work, her sense of steampunk-whimsy, and her complete devotion to P.T. Barnum–the man who gave us the Fiji Mermaid (and the ability to obliquely reference it in House of a 1,000 Corpses).
I’d like to spend a day in her studio just watching her work. *is a total fangirl*
Loved to Death makes these really neat dioramas (as well as more traditional taxidermy) that are like old circus side-show curiosities (Why, hello there again, Mr. Barnum!). I really want one (or 12!), but I kinda don’t have the money for them.
But–one day!–I shall! *mwahahahahahahaha*
There’s really no need for evil mad scientist laughter (Aren’t mad scientists evil by definition? Was that redundant?).
Except that it’s fun!
And, I’m done.
So, these are some of my favorite
things taxidermy artists. What are some people that y’all like?
So, due to interweb outages were I live, I wasn’t able to really do the post on Tuesday. Instead, I posted from my cell with promises, promises, promises.
Here were those promises: the Iola car show (with pictures), Heather
Peterson’s Peterman’s bags, teaching at the Art Garage (I know, wtf), and a couple of questions about how artists achieve success.
So, the Iola Car Show. What does the Iola Car Show have to do with art exactly? Aside from hosting a car-themed art show, there’s also the matter that cars, in and of themselves, are art. They are designed for aesthetics as well as function (which is something that I’m always interested in–where form and function meet). They are a part of our visual culture (have been for quite a long time) and show up from decorations to video games to the drive-way. They become iconic in visual culture such as the Impala in Supernatural and the Bluesmobile in The Blues Brothers. Some cars are so iconic that people even reproduce them for events like the Iola Car Show.
The Bluesmobile. Just hanging, ya know?
Other pretties that I saw. Not all of them, mind cause that would be insane.
Herbie the Love Bug! It actually spit water.
This is what I meant about showing all the cars would be insane. This is a very, very small part of the show.
I <3 this car. It’s the car that beats up all other cars.
This car is specifically for the lovely Miss ‘Lain. It’s so steampunk–if we dumped a steam engine in it or somethings.
Oh, Wisconsin! What a magical wonderland where you can get funnel cakes and fried cheese curds within 50 feet of each other!
I want this sign.
I also want this sign.
So, this was my Saturday at the Iola Car Show. It was huge and too warm and kinda awesome.
Second on my crazy, crazy list of promises for this post is the wonderful work of Heather Peterman. She makes these fantastic bags that originate with paintings that she scans and uploads onto Spoonflower and then orders fabric in order to make bags and pillows and other fabric-y awesomeness. She sells them at like 7 different places in Green Bay including the Art Garage and at the Wednesday Farmers Market on Broadway.
This is, currently, my favorite bag. The image, unfortunately, is completely craptastic because it was one of those kinda of days. The thing has like 8 different pockets!
When I was at the grocer, I saw this lady that had a Heather Peterman bag too! We are everywhere!
I foresee more of these bags and things in my future.
And, I think I might keep the “teaching at the Art Garage (I know, wtf), and a couple of questions about how artists achieve success” until next week because this post is getting waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay out of hand.
*points* An obligatory Princess Bride reference for y’all.
So, this last week has been crazily, fantastically busy; hence why I am currently at home typing this into the blog-o-sphere at my little shadow-darkened desk (have I mentioned that it’s raining like the world’s ending? with lightening and thunder and dark, dark skies? the cats are totally in hiding, and I’m worrying about the nascent garden).
The good thing about being at home? Chai, no-shoes, and fuzzy kitties when they come out from beneath the furniture.
But, I digress (as I often do). Last week. Yeah. Too much going on, particularly on Saturday.
There was working in my studio at the Art Garage. There was Gallery Night replete with insta-book demos for one and all (which went over really, really well and was like magic for people that tried it). And, Saturday–oh, Saturday!–there was the Shawano Farmers’ Market (we also had the Rhubarb Festival and the Jumpin’ June Jamboree and Car Show, but I didn’t get to those), Faerie Fest at Thistledown Greenhouse outside of Bonduel, and a fundraiser for the Art Garage at the Green Bay Barnes and Noble.
While I got a ton accomplished in my tAG studio, that really wasn’t the highlight of the week, so I’ll spare y’all pictures of the last-week’s progress until next week’s post. The highlight wasn’t even Gallery Night–although it was awesome, there were tons of people, and people were really digging my work in addition to the demo and book forms I brought with me. The highlight was Faerie Fest, all of the lovely faerie folk, and the lovely vendors (about half of which were part of Kara Counard‘s 101 Women Project that is on display at the Art Garage until the end of June).
Faerie Fest took place at the Thistledown Greenhouse (which is moving to California?!? *turbo-pouts*). So, yeah, there’s totally a greenhouse there, but what really caught my attention was their beautiful old Victorian house (there are a lot of old Victorians up here for some reason).
It’s like the Wisconsin-version of the house from Practical Magic without the tower.
They also have a bunch of feathered friends patrolling the grounds.
There was also a peacock, but I didn’t manage to get a picture of him.
So, there were a bunch of different vendors, but I’m going to, as usual, tell you about my favorites–’cause I can! bwahahahahaha
There was Aurora’s Apothecary, Herb Shop, and Apothecary Museum (go like it on Facebook!) run by the lovely Miss Melissa. Her shop is located in Greenleaf (Morrison), WI. She carries culinary herbs and other kitchen ephemera, teas, make-your-own potpourri, home and garden decor, plants and seeds for gardening, body and health products, and fairy and magical accoutrement as well as housing an apothecary museum and teaching classes.
This is Melissa and her lovely gentleman friend surrounded by her amazing products (I like that she reads as an urban faerie due to the raver-esque hairfalls, and he’s steampunk-ish; they’re so cute!). In addition to Melissa and friend being beautifully costumed (unlike me in my Dr. Seuss shirt), she totally has a gardening gift in addition to the herbalism knowledge; I could smell her catnip from 8 feet away. Totally, amazingly potent.
I bought a bottle of her Relief for Sore Muscles and Joints (which, anyone who knows me in RL knows that I’m pretty much in constant pain, so this product is a potential life-saver).
It contains essential oils of wintergreen, blackpepper, rosemary, juniper, fir, ginger, lavender, nutmeg, cajeput, clove, eucalyptus, cinnamon, lemon, safflower, aloe, apricot, almond, jojoba, VE, evening primrose, rosehip, and neem. All suspended in an amazingly light massage oil base (I have yet to feel like a ancient Greek wrestler after any application).
Okay, honestly, I hate wintergreen with a passion. I used to have this really good muscle/joint stuff that I could never use because the smell of wintergreen made me crazy, made my head hurt, and made me sick to my stomach. Sooooooo not fun. But Aurora’s Apothecary? The wintergreen isn’t noticeable and nothing in here is making my allergies act up–which is a miracle on the order of loaves and fishes cause there’s at least three things in there with which I habitually have problems. Nothing. Nada. \o/
Mostly, I’m smelling the primrose and the lavender, which I’m liking. Your mileage may vary.
Okay, personal testimonial time.
It’s totally not a cure-all, but it is definitely helping me out. Hot shower (okay, I par-boil myself), application of Relief, ‘jamies, and snuggly blankets. I might not be right as rain (which, what is so right about rain anyway?), but the muscles feel a bit looser, I’m sleeping a bit better, and my mental-state is a bit less “suck the world into a hell dimension.” <–I’m reading Buffy fic again. Can you tell?
I think that’s the most I can ask of anything as far as pain-management goes, so yeah, make a sojourn to Aurora’s Apothecary (or any of the many events that she frequents like the Door County Renaissance Fantasy Faire or the Green Bay Farmers’ Market on Broadway).
Then, there was book bones (Etsy shop) whose motto is “new life for old books” and describes her work as
My handmade jewelry and accessories are all made using old books in some form or another. No worries, though, most of the books are library discards. This means they could no longer be used due to the condition of the pages or outdated content. It warms my heart to take an unwanted book and turn it in to something beautiful and fun. I hope you enjoy them!
And she is totally not kidding. She makes handbags out of book covers and jewelry out of altered pages. They’re very altered book mets haute couture all out of upcycled materials. Who could ask for more? This is the piece that I bought (re: Husband bought) on Saturday. I made a specific beaded chain for it so that it wasn’t just on the temporary black cord. I think they go well together.
Aren’t they lovely faeries?
I bought some tea for my Wisconsin-edition Mother-In-Law (again, Husband bought) and tried to not sniff their wears too pornographically. I sense a road trip in my future very, very soon.
The last of the vendors that I want to talk about is Gracie Designs.
Kelley of Gracie Designs make beautifully cute, hip accessories (that I totally want a bunch of, but I, since I am totally kept at the moment, I didn’t have any money). She has an Etsy and a Facebook, so buy and like as appropriate!
She also frequents the Farmers Market on Broadway, so y’all can see her and Aurora’s Apothecary at the Market 3-8 on Wednesdays through the summer!
In addition to all of the fantastic vendors, there were so many wonderfully dressed faeries that I took kinda sneaky-shots from a distance so that people couldn’t be recognized since I hadn’t asked first.
In my head, these two became Oberon and Titania, which on the Shakespearean stage were played by the same actors that played Theseus and Hippolyta so that they were shadow-selves of the King and Queen of Athens. *is a total Shakespeare geek*
After all of the fun at the Faerie Fest, I went to a fundraiser at Barnes and Noble for the Art Garage, and I signed up for a reading-slot for their Marathon for Literacy in September (as did Husband–he’s going to read something by Lovecraft, and I’m going to read “The Thing in the Forest” from The Little Black Book of Stories by A.S. Byatt).
Okay, so this has become the longest, most picture-heavy post in the history of the universe, and I’m going to go now.