So what could it mean? Since the sign is the result of a worldwide art exhibition is it directed to the artist, the craftsperson, the creative spirit in all of us. Are we more creative when we're living in interesting times? And what does that mean? It sounds like a blessing to me, not a curse, if so, what does it mean?
Here is what Ralph Rugoff, curator of the Biennale says.
"May You Live in Interesting Times will no doubt include artworks that reflect upon precarious aspects of existence today, including different threats to key traditions, institutions and relationships of the “post-war order.” But let us acknowledge at the outset that art does not exercise its forces in the domain of politics. Art cannot stem the rise of nationalist movements and authoritarian governments in different parts of the world, for instance, nor can it alleviate the tragic fate of displaced peoples across the globe (whose numbers now represent almost one percent of the world’s entire population).
But in an indirect fashion, perhaps art can be a kind of guide for how to live and think in ‘interesting times.’ The 58th International Art Exhibition will not have a theme per se, but will highlight a general approach to making art and a view of art’s social function as embracing both pleasure and critical thinking. The Exhibition will focus on the work of artists who challenge existing habits of thought and open up our readings of objects and images, gestures and situations. Art of this kind grows out of a practice of entertaining multiple perspectives: of holding in mind seemingly contradictory and incompatible notions, and juggling diverse ways of making sense of the world. Artists who think in this manner offer alternatives to the meaning of so-called facts by suggesting other ways of connecting and contextualising them. Animated by boundless curiosity and puncturing wit, their work encourages us to look askance at all unquestioned categories, concepts and subjectivities. It invites us to consider multiple alternatives and unfamiliar vantage points, and to discern the ways in which “order” has become the simultaneous presence of diverse orders.»
For me the courses at Artefact Mosaic Studio helped me to see diverse ways of creating compelling mosaics. I'm grateful for this wonderful experience and for being in Venice, Italy during this most amazing art exhibition.
A crazy time to move you say...YES!!! I say it too. December 1, 2018 was a pretty crazy time to make a major, huge move - but we made it, through rain and snow and have been in our new home for two months today.
People ask me "have you settled in and are you having lots of adventures"? We're still at the beginning stages of knowing what that means. Making a major (permanent) move means: getting cars registered, new drivers licenses, getting new car insurance, new health insurance, finding an eye doctor (I wear contacts), getting new medical docs (nothing wrong with either of us at this point) finding a dentist, oops we need new tires - where to go - it seems endless. Pages and pages of documents on the house, the home owners association...etc..you get it. Busy work and not many adventures.
However we have had some wonderful drives to see our new area and to find good fishing spots - the photo is the South Fork of the Boise River - and we've enjoyed some nice coffee places, an occasional lunch out, hikes, the Aquarium, the fly fishing expo and picnicked in the park.
I have begun to set my studio up in the garage and Max will have his studio there also. It will be a good creative space for both of us.
I'm feeling very blessed - grateful and thankful.
I'd enjoy hearing from you.
My last post was in April, Spring time, when we both felt great about moving into a larger apartment and filling it with our art and especially not having anyone living above us. During the months living there we realized that our days of apartment living were coming to an end.
After many conversations "what do you want" no "what do you want" we decided on Star, ID and have found a wonderful townhouse, brand new with some very exquisite features. Moved in just 3 days ago. There are beautiful rivers, lakes, mountains close by (all that means excellent fly fishing) and about 15 minutes from Boise, where there is lots of public art, great eateries, salons/bars and a great college football team. If you've been keeping track, and of course you have 😊this is the 6th move since 2015. Pretty sure this will be the last until the final call.
Max will be traveling back to California a couple days a month for work (direct flight, fortunately). We'll both continue working from home. Max will finish up his reports here, continue day trading, maybe some ceramics in the future and of course fishing. I'll have my studio in our large garage, continue facilitating CMA (a "happy" surprise coming soon) and building websites for artists, which I really enjoy doing.
Looking to me like a pretty happy rewarding future and I'm very excited, thankful and grateful. Blessed by God in so many ways.
P.S. Our moving company was fantastic and I want you to know about it, in case you'll be moving in the future and also as a great place to make a financial donation, Crossing The Jordan. Best rates ever and best service. The furniture was wrapped and protected, all the art was handled carefully and they worked quickly and efficiently. This is a non-profit company with a mission. Here is a bit about them:
"Who We Serve
Read more about their mission and what they have accomplished https://crossingthejordan.org/
Also; now that I'm settled and have good internet, if you've been thinking about revamping your website or maybe getting one for the first time - let me know. I'd love to help you get the website your art deserves. bestartistwebsites.com
It's lovely to see the bright green new leaves on the trees, to see the bare branches filling out and to enjoy the beautiful petunias on my deck. Love that smell. I'm happy for the warm months, the sunshine and the blue skies.
We've been in our new place now for five months. This apartment is nice and big, high ceilings and lots of light. No one above us (not missing the patter of 8 doggies paws). This is a good solution and we'll be here for a while. The walls are getting filled with our art, paintings, mosaics and prints and it's nice to have the space to get all the beautiful ceramics Max has created out of boxes and on shelves and tables. The only boxes that remain packed are a few that have memories of mom and dad, my sewing machine and fabric.
Our new studio/craft room is on the second floor, has nice natural light and plenty of room for my supplies and Max's fly tying desk. With fly fishing season fast approaching there are feathers and thread everywhere. It's fun to have his company in this space and who knows maybe a new art form will develop.
I'm enjoying creating website sites for artists and love seeing all the beautiful art, getting to know the artists and finding the best way to showcase their art. Take a look at some of the websites I've created. Let me know if you would like my help.
Please leave me a comment or two and come visit when you can. Would love to see you.
I did have one major mishap when we moved. I've had my smalti in canning jars forever and never had a problem. They move easily and I can see what I have - however not all shelves are created to hold 10 or more gallon jars of smalti. No one was hurt in this catastrophic event but the mess was nasty to clean up and I still have buckets of tile to sort through - I also have new shelves.
November was - well - an amazing month. Several things happened so quickly in the last few weeks of the month we had been trying to sort out, that we were left a bit awestruck. We are very grateful.
We came to the realization, actually we realized this a lot earlier than November but we weren't sure what our options would be until last month, that we couldn't live in this apartment much longer.
Above our apartment live, two border collies, about 2 years old, ("He’s a dog with unlimited energy, stamina, and working drive, all of which make him a premier herding dog TWO OF THEM.") and two young women. We anticipated people walking and some normal noise, when we chose to live in a middle apartment, but we have been overwhelmed with dogs wrestling and rough housing for many hours a day on top of our heads. After much consideration and deliberation with the management, they arranged for us to make a move to a top level apartment which we will be doing early next month. YES!!! another move - yikes.
We are continuing to enjoy living in this area and discovering all the exceptional places to walk, enjoy a coffee or meal and especially visits to the Crocker Museum. Recent exhibition "Masters of Venice" drawings by Giambattista and Domenico Tiepolo, was exceptional.
Did I fail to mention that the material used for this mosaic "hobby" is very heavy. Actually it gained weight just in the last few months. With every move it's heavier and heavier and I haven't added any this round - go figure ????
We've been in our new place for about 2 months now and we're beginning to settle into some routines. Max is working at the prison on the week-ends, trading each morning, I'm working on CMA, other internet sites and we're both managing all the daily chores. Does it feel like home - not yet.
I still have that nagging sense that it's just temporary and another move will be in our future. For now however we are really enjoying taking long walks and discovering lots of public art, great coffee places and a few wonderful lunch spots. We're finding some great fly fishing spots along the American River, the Delta and soon we'll be heading to the coast. It's nice to be able to do all this during the week.
We've had visits from family which have been wonderful. It's lovely to live close enough for them to visit and for others to visit when they can. We're looking forward to that.
I'm enjoying my studio and have started on a little piece that will be an experiment using mesh and a painted background. It's a quite space to work in and is perfect, for now.
My interest and passion right now is creating websites for people. I have two I'm currently working on that are going to be fantastic. One of the things I've noticed when artists are joining the Contemporary Mosaic Art - CMA website is that they don't have websites or have started them and have not followed through to completion. So, I know there is a big need for this service and I'm looking forward to creating some awesome websites. It's a good time to get that website up and running before the holidays. I'm offering a reduction in my price...check it out.
The images below are from our walks.
Love to hear from you anytime.
Yes, it's feeling like home - well almost. I continue to have that uneasy feeling, of trying to figure out where I am - not my location but my place in the location.
Max and I lived in a beautiful home for 20 years and had all the stability that a home means, physically and psychologically. Both of us were raised with the message that owning a home was the only way. Breaking or moving away from values that have been passed down can be a daunting task. But not impossible, as I've found many times while moving along this life path.
So, what have I learned about apartment dwelling as "older adults" these past 3 years. Well, a lot and for the most part it's been a terrific experiment. We've really enjoyed the freedom from the maintenance that a house, yard, acreage demands, that's probably our top "like". It frees us up to take off and explore, to stay away for longer periods of time and has eased the stress and anxiety that often occurs when things like the roof leaks, the well is dry and the wind just blew down the oak tree on your kiln. Freedom!
It's been an adjustment, in all the apartments we've occupied, that would be four ;-). The main adjustment has been to noise, traffic, people, dogs, trash trucks - that kind of thing. We're adjusting to almost all of those things with this move and not once have we thought about owning a house again.
West Sacramento is growing and developing in some very nice ways. We're within walking distance of Old Sac., the Crocker museum, Raley field (go Cats) some wonderful eateries and not far from other places we enjoy exploring.
As I think about home and look around our current space I do ask "what makes a home"? I know what my Mom would say "it will feel like a home when you make some memories there". I'm sure we all have different ideas about what makes a home a home. I'd love to hear them.
The photos are sculptures of River Cats baseball players located in West Sac. and the bridge is Tower Bridge. It's a draw bridge over the Sacramento River that connects West Sacramento to Downtown Sac.
The movers came, grumbled about how many boxes we had, and made far to many comments about how heavy they were and that I shouldn't have made them so heavy. MOSAICS!! It was an arduous move for everyone. A few mishaps along the way, but nothing that couldn't be resolved quickly.
All the boxes are unpacked and most things have found their home, in drawers, on shelves and with the help of my son Zac the art is beautifully placed on the walls. My studio is in the attached garage and I've been able to do a little organizating, but not much. Mainly I wanted everything out of the boxes: that's been accomplished. (The ceramics in the photo below were created by Max.)
This will be the smallest studio I've had and the first one inside the place I live. I'm excited about getting everything sorted out and looking forward to lots of time to experiment.
We're looking forward to all the interesting and varied things that Sacramento and the surrounding areas have to offer. Our plan is to fly fish on some local rivers and the Delta, to have many visits to Davis, the Crocker Art museum in Sacramento, to cheer for the River Cats, to find lots of nice places to enjoy Happy Hour and to explore near and far.
But for now, lots of naps, aspirin to ease the pain and reminders that we are blessed and live an extraordinary life.
Come and visit.
I took this photo on our last hike to Buckhead Interpretive Trail, with my new camera. My little Sony finally gave out and I purchased a new one that's a step up. I have a lot to learn about all the settings but so far I'm really happy with the results.
We're in the middle of packing up for our move. It's been sad to pack all the goodies in my studio and to give up that wonderful space. I've enjoyed all the visitors, the events that happened there over the past 2 years, the instructors that graced the space and the wonderful students I enjoyed getting to know. Most of all I enjoyed my landlords, Terry Way and Anne Korn of Raven Frameworks. They have been generous in so many ways and I will miss them. This has been a really good experience for me and one I'll treasure always.
So we're off at the end of the month for another adventure. Max will be working at the Calif. State prison in Folsom. We have a nice apartment and I'll set up my studio space in an attached garage. First time I've ever had a studio inside the place I also live. We lived not far from Sacramento for years and are familiar with the area. We're looking forward to fly fishing in the Delta, the American River and heading back to some beautiful fishing spots we enjoyed in the past. It's a good move for us - but not an easy one.
I'm enjoying the revitalization of CMA-Contemporary Mosaic Art and really happy that members are subscribing and the wonderful new art is being posted on the site.
Well, guess it's time to go pack a few more boxes...
Oh - here's one more photo I took with my new camera ;-)
"Queen Anne's Lace" bud.
I'm apparently not that good at remembering to blog on a regular basis. So I've decided instead of giving myself regret about not remembering I'll give my self permission to blog as the mood fits;
I have my studio back after a busy weekend with students in a workshop, with Visiting Artist, Katherine England. It's so nice to have a clean, quiet, organized space. I started an abstract while the workshop was happening and I'm calling it "Oregon Winter". It's a pretty gloomy mosaic, with slate, marble and flagstone. As you might imagine it's very dark and foreboding.
Winter was tough on me this year. The grey skies did get to me and I found my mood being affected pretty regularly. I'm very happy to have the sun shining, blue skies, a slight cool breeze, and I'm even willing to suffer the allergies that come along with the sun.
Last Sept. I went to Udine, Italy and took a two week workshop with Giulio Menossi. It was fantastic for me, in so many ways, not just the creation of a beautiful mosaic under his watchful eye but being able to visit with good friends I'd made during my time of promoting classes for Giulio a few year ago. I haven't set this mosaic in it's final place yet (it's still on mesh) but I'm heading in the direction of setting it in mortar and having a simple frame.
I've been doing lots of thinking about aging these days, all the complexities that come with changes both body and circumstances. I had a book one time with the title "Aging isn't for Sissy's". What I know now is whether you're a sissy or not you're going to age and it's a smoother transition if you have good friends who support and love you no matter how you go through this time of life.
Not any major travel plans this year, a time at the beach coming up and a trip in Dec. Other than that it's a stay at home time for now.
I finished one of the mosaic pieces from the workshop Dianne Sonnenberg presented in my studio in Eugene, Oregon In April. It was a terrific class with exquisite materials and fun students. Hope to have Dianne in the studio again soon.
I've used slate, smalti and gold smalti.
The season is changing, finally.. Our rainy season seems to be on the way out, as there have been a few days of sun. I'm really looking forward to more sunny days; my energy increases and my optimism for the future gets a boost. Oregonians tell me It's wishful thinking, I hope not. My Southern California heritage really doesn't enjoy as much rain as Oregon has had this year.
This is an exciting time in my studio with the sun shining in the front windows and Anne's beautiful flowers growing by the door. In just a few days Liliana Waisman will be in the studio to teach her Spatial Sculptural Mosaics.
In the mean time I'm finishing up the mosaic that I started in the class that Dianne Sonnenberg taught a few weeks ago. I'm really enjoy the studio, the beautiful materials and the very unique neighborhood that the studio is a part of.
Here's my WIP I'll post the finished mosaic in a day or two.