Well, I don't suppose there's any harm in blogging about an awesome and major event that is already over...I was so busy and life was very full during the entire time leading up to it, that I just completely spaced on blogging. My brain is a bit sieve-like when it gets overwhelmed.
Early last month, my two-person show with fellow cute-critter artist Chris Ryniak opened at Stranger Factory tin Albuquerque. It was called "Migration".
Chris and I have been friends for a long time - we worked together at the same company for a number of years, and after I left to pursue my own interests, we kept in touch. Both of us have been through really significant life events (relationships ending, new jobs, moving to new places) in the past few years, so we wanted our show to reflect that.
This is probably one of the most autobiographical shows I've ever done, but it probably isn't obviously so. I don't tend to be an artist that "says" things with my art. I create what I find appealing or beautiful, and explore aesthetic sensibilities that I love with my work. Textures, colors, and sort of idyllic representations of anachronistic ideals are mostly what I "say" with my artwork. This show was different though...the idea of moving, traveling, migrating. Many of my pieces dealt with the idea of place, and of belongings. What you decide to take with you when leaving - not just physically, but emotionally and mentally, too. Curating and purging, and what you discover is important for you to take with you on your journey. Not all trips are happy ones, unfortunately, and and a lot of my creatures served as markers of time and events, memories, ghosts of emotional pasts, and feelings that one has to decide whether to take with them, or leave behind.
On the non-introspective side, it was a really fun show to work on. We came up with a color palette and overall aesthetic idea and both stuck to it, making the show really cohesive visually. It was also the largest single body of work I have ever created - between the two of us we had over 90 pieces in the gallery, and every last one found a home. Things like that are what make my heart full, as an artist. It makes me so happy to know that what I make is bringing joy to collectors, as well as those who see the work and like it.
Visiting friends in New Mexico when the show opened was a well-deserved refueling for the spirit. I had put so many months of work and energy into the show - on top of the emotional energies already drained by current events in my life - it was such a welcome recharge. So many people flew out from different places to visit and see the show in person, and purchase pieces, I was flattered and humbled.
The last few weeks have been kind of a slow ramping back up period....after huge shows there tends to be this sort of post-partum depression that happens - the studio is empty, the resources are depleted, there is nothing left to promote. But I'm moving into some new rhythms and directions now, with a lot of projects and one more huge show on the way for 2013. It's time to look toward new horizons and breathe in the air of new lands. My own migration is not yet complete.
To see all the pieces from the show, click here.