How wonderful is this mixtape?! If you know me you know how much Chance the Rapper's Coloring Book is my jam. This up-and -coming MC, also from Chicago has been featured on all three of his releases. This has been my companion in the studio for the past few days. Take a listen!
Yesterday, Dana Sikkila and her crew stopped at the Anderson Center on the second leg of their bike trip across the state. Dana is the director of the 410 Project, a gallery located in Mankato, MN, and she and Kyle Zeiszler are embarking on a 500 mile trip to visit eleven artists in southern Minnesota, and conducting interviews in their studios. Ryan Sturgis and Michael Chalhoub of True Facade Pictures are documenting the whole trip for a documentary that will air in October.
It was really fun to get visitors midway through the residency. I showed everybody around the sculpture garden and shared a little bit about the history of the campus. I had lots of fun with the interview even though it was a new experience to answer questions on camera. Dana is a really knowledgable artist and she had some engaging questions that kept the conversation lively. After spending so much time focusing my attention inward and directly at the work it was really nice to share some of my thoughts externally.
As part of the trip they are gathering a piece of artwork from each artist for an exhibition back at the 410 Project in October. I gave them a smaller painting to take with them, and its cool to think that my piece will travel over 400 miles, and visit so many studios. It's right in line with my themes of transit and place.
Check out the other artists Dana will be visiting on her ride, and consider making a donation to the project on they Paypal page. You can find daily video updates like the one below on the True Faced Pictures Facebook page and on Dana's page.
Shelley Caldwell, Installation and Collage – Delaran
Julie Marie Fakler, Painting – Faribault
Cameron A. Jarviss, Painting and Mixed Media – Red Wing
Erik Noren, Custom Bicycle Frame Builder – Minneapolis
Meranda Turbaka Turbak, Painting – Stillwater
Jacob Yeates, Drawing – Minneapolis
Brian Geihl, Printmaking - Crystal
Betsy Byers, Painting – Saint Peter
David Mauch, Glass Carving – Eagle Lake
Gregory Wilkins, Mixed Media – Mankato
Niko Warmka, Painting – Mankato
Today I got a visit from Dana Sikkila Murphy and her crew as they made the second stop on their bike trip through southern Minnesota. It was a cool new experience to be interviewed on camera, but it was definitely a relaxed experience, and more of a conversation between all of us about what I've been making so far, and just the nature of making art in general. I'll post more details tomorrow, and will include links to pages where you can follow their journey. Good luck on the rest of the trip, you guys!
I had a really productive day today. I got up kind of late, and didn't make it into the studio until 10, but I think I've reached the point in my current projects when I have gotten a lot of thinking and planning out of the way, and have the full bandwidth to devote a full day to just making work, and moving paint.
I had a huge breakthrough with the two paintings I just started. for these, I decided to forgo the orange ground that I have been using to start all my paintings in the last few years, and started with a fairly detailed pencil drawing. I blocked in some large shapes last week, and today I decided to go back over the paint with my pencil to reinforce the structures and angles in the two scenes. I've been looking at the work of Andrew Wykes (look at his paintings every day, and go see any show he has). He has a style where he breaks up the space with very bold line work, and uses tape to create really hard edges and bright pops of color to depict scenes that are slipping in and out of abstraction. I'm not attempting to make anything as breathtaking as he accomplishes, but the lines are really helping me think about how the objects in my paintings sit in space. This is especially true in the landscape I am working on, as it is devoid of the rectangular buildings that I'm used to painting. I'm thinking about the natural landscape, and how it can be thought of as existing in some sort of framework, even before humans arrive and impose one explicitly.
I also moved ahead with my series of prints for the show. I'm planning four prints, and finished tracing my images for two of them, and either tonight or tomorrow I can start transferring those images to the linoleum blocks so they can be carved. I think I'll give a detailed account of how linocut printing works on here, because I think it's fascinating it allows you to create multiples of one image, and the because there is such a shift in the way you think about image-making when you go from painting to printing.
I have to go buy wood for two more paintings tomorrow, and I'm a little bit apprehensive. I stopped at Menard's yesterday, but when I saw the number of varieties they had I panicked and ran away. I'll be braver tomorrow.