Lisa's Musings

there's little i control

as i slept

i gave myself permission to take today off. i had breakfast with a friend and gave her a dreamweaver lesson and then proceeded to simply do nothing else today. i didn't have enough energy for the studio and so i didn't go! how luxurious!

i thought i'd share a few pictures from maine

moustache row

one of the BEST things about the trip was all the good food, the amazing sites and hanging out with wonderful people. we all know maria is amazing [pictures with her to follow].... but there's a whole creative contingent ALL in portland. dinner with jennifer , meg , betsy maria and lisa c. was one of the highlights of the trip. so was meeting and seeing karen gelardi's studio. just so so good. what a community! i felt like wherever we went we met genuinely nice sincere folks. on the street, in stores, at the beaches [which were so beautiful]....

a few favs:

yellow door + buoys

i see red feet

beckys late

yellow dingy

small church

most of the maine pics here . still have some shots of maria and her house/studio left to share.

have a great friday!


gofun shirayuki
gofun shirayuki

hi there. i'm home. it's been a few days of catch up city. vacations are great. they create a sense of wonder - i look at things in new ways. i dream about possibilities of moving [even if i don't ever intend to move], i notice differences in weather, landscape, people, smells, foods. i'm going to spend the next week showing some pictures and some fun moments of the trip. lisa c made a great traveling companion. we took turns in comfy beds and generally agreed on everything. so nice!

cadmium orange
cadmium orange

i'm not sure if this happens to all artists - but once i put up a show i have this disconnection happen. i'm still attached to the work - i can remember the moments of when i did certain things - or the frustration of tying a bunch of french knots - but somehow i can view the work as separate from me. this is helpful in trying to determine what is successful and not successful and often once a show is up i gain a new insight to the work - but ultimately it's still a little strange. i'm curious what other artists/makers think - does this happen to them?

you can see all of our pairings here


so - the opening was really fun - although there was a torrential storm that caused havoc for some folks trying to make it.... i got to meet so many kind and creative people lisa de john and her fantastic husband, abby and her super sweet husband , kind leah from boston, elizabeth the brains behind squam [the camp we all want to go to!], megan bogonovich the ceramicist who makes ultra intricate work, fun and funny sarah whose family lives in rochester, the wonderful artist jen , and super smart and sweet betsy . i feel so lucky and honored to meet such folks - all talented. and this was just the beginning of meeting interesting people. and i have to thank all the artstream crew again....

tyrian purple
tyrian purple

so each of our pieces involved researching each color. most of mine have several components that weave together... both lisa and i posted little info plaques next to our works to explain our thought processes. if you want to read my explanations of each piece you can visit them all on flickr

alizarin crimson

more on the trip this week.
hope you enjoy the rest of your weekend!

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hanging the show

lisa congdon and i are in new hampshire. we hung our show yesterday after some fun deliberation - and with the help of susan and adam and rainer of art stream . everyone should have an adam to help them hang. makes life so much easier! [you can check out lisa c's flickr stream for more photos of install and pieces. she's a better flickr-er than i am!

tonight is the opening. apparently there will be some exciting appearances by some east coast folk... it should be fun. our work will also be available online in artstream's shop tonight [july 18th] at 5pm eastern time. one of my favorite things about susan is that she encourages financing of pieces. i love it when galleries try to make work accessible to people.

ben franklin crafts

lisa and i had to get some exacto knives and so we went to ben franklin crafts . the neatest [in terms of organized] craft store we've ever seen.

i also went out for a minute to get some liquid refreshment [it's HOT] and spied this:
vault alarm

and this

perfect 10

earlier in the day we saw a bunch of gymnastics girls running by the gallery. there's a gym right down the way....

think good thoughts for us tonight. and for my husband. who is home alone dealing with some very unfun pet stuff right now....

we are off to maine tomorrow

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pigmentary portraits

it's hard to believe that i leave TOMORROW for the east coast. lisa congdon and i are going out install our show pigmentary portraits. i am excited to see how our work looks together. i really had a great time researching this show. and i discovered 2 things while making this work that i want to carry over into new pieces.

1. i like the idea of patchworking pieces. each of my pieces in the show has multiple components. some of which i overlapped and hang on pins so that they spatially are on different planes. since i'm using a semi-transparent vellum i'm really liking the effect.
2. i figured out this new way to work with thread and paper. again it's a spatial thing - but i started wrapping it around the corners and edges - it becomes this really interesting formal punch.

the short scoop on the show:

In our own ways we have researched and investigated the historical origins of Indigo and Cobalt blue, Indian and Ochre yellow, Verdigris and Malachite green, Vermilion and Alizarin red, Cadmium and Realgar orange, Tyrian and Mars Violet purple, Gofun Shirayuki white, and Ivory/Bone black.

Our hope was to create a portrait of each pigment - through which we could somehow reconnect with the alchemy of colors' past.

Firm believers in the idea that one's materials can only enhance and contextualize one's work, we are interested in exploring where these pigments come from and how to present their findings in a visually rich language.

artstream Studios
56 north main street
rochester, nh 03867

if you are around i hope you come by and say hello!!

after the show opens we are headed to maine for a few days of relaxing with some friends. i'm REALLY looking forward to this. i'm getting to meet some special folks.

i'll try and post some pics of the show/travels while we are away but i wanted to leave you with some eye candy/links.

diem chau

diem's piece arrived. isn't it stunning? i didn't realize from photos, but she actually embroiders on a very thin silk and stretches that over the cup. it's really subtle. when you look straight on the illusion of the embroidery being on the ceramic surface is so lovely.....

andrew paynter

andrew paynter sent out a summer newsletter with this photo of the band mattson 2. i LOVED this contact sheet so much.

and finally.... i've discovered this new to me blog of paper and things . monica astounds me everyday with her finds. she has a great eye.

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frog bear

i made this bear for a friend's new baby. [premie baby - but she's fine]. something about a bear being able to dress up as a frog really cracked me up. plus i was literally so excited to go to michael's to buy googly eyes. when was the last time i used googly eyes?!?

the pattern came from this book:
crochet toys

i really want to make the elephant finger puppets

studio desk

i was looking at my desk in the studio yesterday. i can spy the evidence of at least 4 projects in the works. the pile of papers is all the research i did for pigmentary portraits - my upcoming show with lisa congdon at art stream studios . it's coming up quick. more on it very soon.

happy thursday! tonight i am meeting up with a friend from LA who is in town and we'll be stopping by the show at rare device

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two red chairs

above is a piece i just made for a trade with diem chau . she wanted a red piece. this is small - 8" x 8". i'm so excited she wanted to trade with me. i really really love her work. we're dealing with such similar ideas - but she uses figures. i use stand ins for figures - we're both interested in objects. and how thread operates with them - binding them, connecting them, decorating them.... i'll show you what she made me when it arrives.

so let's see. two big things on my list of things to do can be checked off. haircut and teeth cleaning. easy things to put off when you are feeling strapped for time.

i spoke to a friend today and she said i sounded more human than i had in a while. that felt good. i feel more human. more rested. sure i still have a big list of things that need to get done, but my crates are off to art stream studios , i've been getting enough sleep, eating well [although since hubby cooks most of the time i almost always eat well at home!] and i don't have ANY GRADING to do. i think that is the most exciting thing.

i was thinking about things i want to accomplish this summer - some are small small things that will feel good

+ take naps - i got out of the nap habit and they do really feel luxuriously good
+ drink ice tea in the backyard and feel some warm sun on my toes
+ take more photos. i have been uninspired and not taking pictures. i miss it. the immediacy of the shutter. i want to get back into the habit of just taking photos to take photos, not to document.
+ start on some new and BIGGER pieces in the studio. as well as a collaboration and perhaps another radial tank piece in a different colorway. pink? greens? hmmm
+ make an article of clothing. i have a huge stockpile of vintage patterns. i want to pull one out and make something.
+ go swimming
+ clean the studio
+ create an inventory list
+ clean out my closet [this involves painting and clearing out a small room in our house]
+ get a pedicure

will stop here b/c i don't want this list to get daunting.

hope your week is starting off well!

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before i talk about the show i want to thank stephanie levy - whose work i have long admired - for asking me to part of her series artists who blog. you can read my interview here

AND... the winner of the blogaversary give-a-way is SOSSER - perhaps your "pick me pick me" prayer worked? please email me as your profile is blocked and i can't find you.... :) so i can mail you your prize!

pattern reDefined - new synchronized tank : radial formation

my trip to LA was so good. catch ups with family and friends [we spied nancy reagan], meeting a special baby, shopping with grandma, and the show. oh the show.

this is one of those shows where things just really clicked. i was excited to be a part of this show from the get go, but then seeing all the work together made my heart cartwheel. above is my new tank configuration. round and smaller.... reminiscent of the toxin doily drawings of mine also on view. the best part? ONE PIECE. yes. i succumbed and glued the sucker once i figured out placement in my studio. as much as i love a good installation, sometimes there just isn't enough time.

pattern reDefined

my work alongside Freddy Chandra's and Jil Weinstock's is simply put a good fit. we are all interested in repetition. we are all so interested in color [the show actually matched - which could be a detriment, but in this case it worked. i loved how green, blue, yellow, bounced around the room in all of our works]. ultimately we are all involved in negative space. but what i didn't realize until i was standing in the exhibition was how we all are invested in material - not only the media that we use to make our own work, but the actual materiality as well. physicality. how we start to touch with our eyes... or want to touch from looking. i firmly believe that artists need to make conscious decisions about their materials for each choice can add another layer to the work. this show proves that point. what happens when you embed drawings into resin that looks like candy, when shirts and doilies are made of rubber, when felt is used to represent a tank or thread is sewn onto paper to give a drawing a new dimensionality? what happens is that the familiar is not. that our perceptions are altered. that what is known to be hard becomes soft and visa versa.

pattern reDefined

anyway, the show is up through august 16th at walter maciel gallery . THANK YOU to everyone who came out! and to she that couldn't but sent flowers because she was working on a great project.

this week my studio is a factory as i frame and wrap the work for an upcoming show with lisa congdon at art stream studios . it has to go out monday at the latest.... happy tuesday!

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Name: lisa s
Location: oakland, CA, United States

hello and welcome to my blog. i'm a mixed media artist living in oakland, CA with my husband, 2 dogs, 1 cat and my baby daughter. i try to post once a week about things that inspire me, what's going on in my studio, and little tidbits of my life. thanks for visiting, reading and commenting!

please please please :: i am happy to have you use an image of mine on your blog or somewhere else, but PLEASE just ask permission before you do. and please don't hot link. it really is important that we respect one another and the work we do. and if you are too shy or busy to ask, could you at least link back to me? thank you in advance!


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