Interested in a small animal study he’s seen on the internet, Judson arranges to visit my studio this a.m. He’s come to pick up a particular one. As he moves through the space he quickly changes his mind and consequently will leave with 2 others. I am always surprised by people who can do this – make quick decisions of this sort. I admire the skill.
We spend time talking and I learn he’s passionate about art. He’s visited many artist spaces. I first connect with Judson back in March at the Feminism Today exhibit in the monOrchid. I enjoy finally meeting and chatting with him.
Here are the artworks he takes with him today –
Above is the mixed media (casein and egg tempera) on paper titled Creative I am. It is the anatomy study that eventually leads to my current series Nothing In Stasis. And below isanother mixed media (casein) painting on canvas titled Taking a Stand from an earlier series called Mental Concoctions. Both are now at his framer!
Thank you again, Judson.
The blog posts titled No Woman is an Island acknowledge the people and/or organizations who support me and the work I do. Here is a video made a few years back by Brian McHugh and MojoVideoProduction. Not only does it show some of the series of the latter painting in this post, and the ideas behind the work – it also shows my studio a few years back. It’s a completely different environment now!
Five15 Arts presents: The Fourth Annual 515 to the FifthSmall Works Show. The artist run gallery, set in the heart of downtown Phoenix’s Roosevelt Row Gallery District, is doing it again! Members exhibit alongside five artists each has personally invited to participate. Come join us for a diverse salon-style exhibition of 12″ x 12″artwork representing over sixty Phoenix artists.
Member Mary Shindellput out a call – and here are her 5 invited guests (and only a small sampling of all the many showing):
Christopher JagminCarolyn LavenderSusan CanasiMitch FryMonica Aissa Martinez
Mary Shindell OCOTILLO 1 Digital drawing, Ink jet print $30
Christopher Jagmin 378 From series entitled, Dirty Color Encaustic and oil on wood $700.00
Carolyn Lavender Jaguar-Jaguar 2 graphite, acrylic on canvas panel
Susan Canasi The Looking Glass Sculpted copper and mirror $175
Mitch Fry Delaware Cootie Catcher Original drawing: Poire Tranquille steel & goo *Special thanks to: Pere Brooks- Bilson’s grade school origami memory Price: $ 79.99
Monica Aissa Martinez Caballitos De Mar Mixed media on panel 400.00
Mary Shindell OCOTILLO 2 Digital drawing Ink jet print $30
Fourth Annual 515 to the 5th Openings: First Friday, July 3 and August 7th (6-10PM) Artist Receptions: Third Friday, July 17th and August 21st (6-10PM) *Hours: First and Third Fridays during July and August from 6-10PM Saturdays from 1-5PM Five15 Arts → Website and ↓Directions
Address: 515 E Roosevelt St, Phoenix, AZ 85004 Transit: Roosevelt St & 7th St *All work is available for sale!
The last two summers I’ve painted critters the cat brought into the house. I wasn’t planning to do this again. Though a few weeks ago she brought a small bird into the studio and left it for me – to see. Let’s just say curiosity piqued, in particular I wondered about the head and its anatomy. Birds have brains wired very similar to humans. They have a large brain to body ratio which supports advanced and complex intelligence. The many arteries, veins and nerves in the head cluster together, like ours. Intricate eye anatomy allows for acute eyesight. And while they have no teeth, their notable beak is lightweight.
What is the Subtle Body? I keep asking the question.
According to Mosby’s Dictionary of Complementary and Alternative Medicine I understand it is a network of energy channels that transport energy derived from oxygen, sensory, and food-derived nutrients. The network lies parallel to blood vessels and nerves in the body; it facilitates and coordinates the movement of the flow of blood and neural impulses. It is not an anatomical system such as the cardiovascular or nervous system. It cannot be viewed conventionally. Instead, it is accessed through practice of imagination and visualization that can be accomplished through meditation.*
It cannot be seen conventionally? And only accessed through practice of imagination and visualization?
About this painting:
I already mentioned my shoulders and hands ache and so awareness of the body heightens. I paint a hand a few weeks ago. Now I work on the back body. How does the body maintain balance, how is equilibrium regained.
Once again I carefully lay out a spinal column, counting out each vertebrae from the base of the skull to the bottom of the pelvis. I ground the form in recognizable anatomy but the goal is to focus on the nervous system. Woven through the center of the study are arteries, veins and the lymphatic system. Extending out from everything are the nerves.
A friend reminds me of the great Cauda Equina, the bundle of nerves that run through the lower part of the lumbar vertebra. I enhance the area. I lay structure down for a few days before I put all reference material away and work without it.
Cause and effect. Cause. Effect. Balance. Imbalance. Physical. Subtle. Physical. Subtle. The body. Energy. Flow. Tangle. Flow.
The body, in the short time a human inhabits it – can supply one with the greatest prod for growth. The questions change out a bit with this work –
Who am I? What am I? What is this body and what is my relationship to it?
“My experience is what I agree to attend to. Only those items which I notice shape my mind.” – William James, American psychologist
Lara tells me her hens lay one egg a day. But not everyday, she adds. We walk into the hen-house and I meet all the chickens. She walks over to the laying boxes and picks up an egg and hands it to me. This is Dottie’s egg.
Dottie’s egg is small and heavy. And while I have painted with fresh egg yolk before, I’ve not actually met the chicken that laid it. Lara and I are bartering eggs for peaches. She has 6 to give me on that particular afternoon. I feel the preciousness of each one. Especially when I take Dottie’s egg into the studio and prepare to work.
I’ve been asked to paint an arm and hand. Between meeting the chicken who laid the yolk I use and because of recent issues with my hand – the task comes with new meaning. I pay careful attention to each layer, each structure.
The painting begins as a casein ↑ until I receive fresh eggs ↓. While I have worked with egg tempera for years, it always feels like something new to me. Each time I use it, it feels like I struggle with it – until I don’t.
Lara is a fellow artist and Yogi, as well as a masseuse. Before I leave her home she works on both my hands a bit.
Thank you Laura. And thank you Dottie.
The basic ingredients for egg tempera painting are egg yolk, water, and dry pigment.
At the start of the semester I ask students what they’d like to get out of my drawing class. Clay says Practice practice practice – and he does. Heather, an engineering student, wants visualization and fun. I hope both were prompted. I ask if she’s enjoyed the semester. Yes, and despite how hard it was, she will miss it. Terry responds TO LEARN TO SEE AGAIN! He came to the right classroom. And from the looks of all of his completed assignments – he did. Most students say they want to improve their drawing skills and in fact, each one of them does. The semester appears to come and go so quickly. We hold final critique this week.
The class has two different assignments to go over – maybe more, because advanced students worked through something very different. We get going, and in between there is plenty of laughter, cookies, coffee and peaches. It is an easy ending to a fast paced semester.
This particular group moves through the early marker assignments more quickly than any class I’ve taught before. They slow down with charcoal. A few struggle with it in a way I do not expect. Surprises for everyone I guess, including the advanced students who reproduce a master work. For a few days the tension in the room they draw in (because I separate them) was thick. By day 3 there is break through (thank goodness). I spend the last day of class walking from student to student appreciating the focus.
I wish I had their very first marker study to compare to this last charcoal. You would get a sense of the progress everyone made. Here are a few highlights – note the values. As usual, I can’t possibly include every work.
Adam’s Teapot with reflection of windows and sky in it.
Trenary”s glass bottles on tin.
Hyeokewoo’s Gorilla Skull.
Charles works on reproducing an Alice Neel.
Robert reproduces hands of God and Adam – Michelangelo
Have a good summer! Keep drawing, you’ve only just started.
My hands hurt. Clearer yet, my fingers ache. It’s not the joints though.
I began this life-size hand and arm last week. I set it from the ground up – bones, muscles, tendons, veins, nerves – studying each layer as it goes over another. I prepare the background so as to imply fascia. It’s far from complete.
I paint in egg tempera which I’ve not used in a good while. The size of the composition and the pace I move at work with the material of choice.
I can’t help but be amazed by the structure of our body. The hand is complex and so perfectly set up to allow us to do the many things we do with it. I have a hard time believing it’s all random. As I study – I do wonder who designed the spectacular object.
I lost track of time and painted 5 hours steady yesterday – could be why my hands hurt.