art recipe :: winter blues

this winter is way too long, too cold and too slow…  i used to joke about how cold it gets in saskatoon, but not any more.  it’s not funny.  when the temperature drops to -30 and even lower, your brain gets frozen too.  it’s a fact.  the upside is, though, it’s sunny most of time.  it is beautiful.  and you will get tougher.  when it’s sunny and no wind, i’m okay until it hits -25 or so.  but this winter is so long nonetheless.

i’m stuck in the house.  i might as well being creative.  no pouting allowed.

what should she be riding on…?

a turtle, of course.

what does a turtle look like?

mine doesn’t look like the one on the computer, but that’s okay.  my turtle is braver and creepier.

it’s almost done…

(color pencils, sumi ink, paper)

my favorite neckless

this drawing is called ‘my favorite neckless’.  i’m showing this drawing at hosfelt gallery in san francisco.  i’m taking part in a group show titled “vocabularies of metaphor — more stories“, all works on paper by fifteen international artists.  the show will run from september 6th to october 18th .   if you’re around in san francisco, please do take time to visit the gallery and enjoy the show.

about the show (by the owner/curator todd hosfelt)

it’s an exhibition of works on paper by fifteen international artists exploring narrative through symbols.  i’m interested in visual languages that are highly personal and lyrical.  the “stories” are also original to the artists and open to interpretation.

the artists’ choice of exploring the intimacy of drawing/painting on paper (and my choice, as the curator) is about giving the viewer a voyeuristic glimpse into private moments.  i’m exhibiting between two and six pieces by each artist to give the viewer the opportunity to observe mutating idioms and to decipher the lexicons of each.    while the show didn’t start to be about work by women, almost all of it is.    i’m including amy cutler, fay ku, shahzia sikander, ruth marten, liliana porter, yuka yamaguchi, yelena yemchuk, baseerah khan, rob matthews, henry darger, sara stites, charlotte schultz, rachell sumpter, crystal liu and seonna hong.

todd hosfelt will be writing about the artists and their works in the show on his blog.  here’s what he wrote about my drawing, ‘my favorite neckless’:

i love yuka yamaguchi’s work.    it’s what frieda khalo would be making if she were alive and japanese.    gorgeously rendered colored pencil (often self) portraits that are seemingly innocent and disarmingly brutal.

i’m reproducing “my favorite neckless” 2008 colored pencils on paper, 11×14 inches.     beyond the play on words, jay brought the phrase “turtles all the way down” to my attention.     the story, in this case, as told by stephen hawkings in “a brief history of time” goes like this:

a well-known scientist (some say it was bertrand russell) once gave a public lecture on astronomy.  he described how the earth orbits around the sun and how the sun, in turn, orbits around the center of a vast collection of stars called our galaxy. at the end of the lecture, a little old lady at the back of the room got up and said: “what you have told us is rubbish. The world is really a flat plate supported on the back of a giant tortoise” the scientist gave a superior smile before replying, “what is the tortoise standing on?” “you’re very clever, young man, very clever,” said the old lady. “but it’s turtles all the way down!”

the story is used to illustrate religious/mythic myopia, but can also be read as meaning that you can never get to the bottom of a difficult question.

and of course there seussian reference to yertle the turtle…

i didn’t know about the turtle book by dr. seuss, but now i’ve got to go buy that for elijah and me ;)