Oh Big Apple

December 5, 2011

Does anyone even call it that anymore? In any case, I have officially lived in the big city for 6 months, and what a big city it is! There is certainly a huge adjustment period–especially after living in the middle of nowhere in Northern Vermont–and I would say that adjustment period doesn’t even really start until you’ve been here for 4 or 5 months. The first 4 months you’re in pure survival mode–scraping by on as little as possible, building up a routine and a familiarity with your new environment, learning the absolute basics of how to get by. It’s not until you’re a little more settled, a little less panic stricken by the whole thing, that the reality of what you’ve just done begins to set in. By the 6 month mark, you’re either completely burned out by the rat race that is life in the city, or you’re settled and comfortable enough to let those thoughts of doubt seep in. In either case, its time for those age old questions about what you’re doing here, and why, and to what end? Is this really what you wanted? Is it what you thought it would be? How long will you actually last here?

At least, that’s been my experience, and I hear similar reports from others. And I’ve heard that this is the formative point in your New York City experience. If you react to the 6 month mark positively, you’ll probably stick around for a while and things will get better or maybe even really great. If you react apathetically, you’ll probably try it out a little longer, stick around for a year or two, enjoy bits and pieces, really not enjoy others, but you’ll eventually move on to other, greener pastures. And if you react negatively at the 6 month mark, you’re probably doomed to hate the city forever. Even if you stick it out for a while and try to make it work, you’ll eventually walk away happy to be rid of it and not interested in ever going back except as a visitor, and even that might be pushing it.

This is where I’m at. The 6 month mark, wondering what I’ve done, how I’ll survive here, and whether I’ll find a way to be happy or if I’m going to come away hating it. I’ll get back to you on this.

In any case, I’ve been thinking recently about this blog and where it should be headed, now that life is so different… Not having written since October 1 is evidence of this… So far, I’ve kept it based entirely on my own artwork and process, and that form of documentation is still important to me, but my daily art experience is so much more than that now. Living in Vermont, and even Boston, my own art-making was all there was to report on, but here in the city, I encounter horrible and incredible art every day through my job as a sculpture conservator and in the city itself in the parks and streets, at galleries and museums, through articles and blogs, and in the studios of friends and colleagues. My personal art world has exploded exponentially, and if this blog is true to my art and its making, it has to reflect this incredible expansion as well. How this will manifest itself, I’m not entirely sure of yet, but by 2012, I expect some changes will be happening on here. Whether that will mean adding all these new aspects of my art world to this blog, or expanding to a new blog focused on all the stuff I see in my day to day routine, and still keeping this one primarily focused on the studio, I’m not sure yet… I’ll get back to you on this.

In any case, stay tuned for post holiday changes, and I hope you all have a great holiday season! See you in 2012…

Studio and Show Images

October 1, 2011

shot by Yung during the opening at Wayfarers. It’s always interesting to see your work and studio through someone else’s eyes… Go to his Flickr page to see all his shots from the opening.

Wayfarers FOR

September 25, 2011

I should have time to write a bit about the show in another week or so, but until then, here are some quick shots taken by Zach Seeger before the opening. Enjoy! More to come of the rest of the show soon… The show will be up until October 16th, so there is plenty of time to come see it and the studios in person. Hope to see you there!

one piece on a plinth in the middle of the room

speaking to another piece, embedded in the wall

the window to the second piece

view of the second piece through the glass

I hope you can make it! I think it is going to be a really great show and am getting more and more excited the closer we get to the opening. This week is the big week for building out the gallery and making sure everything at Wayfarers is ready for our first ever INAUGURAL SHOW!

Check out my show announcement and the Facebook invite for more information. But really all you need to know is September 16, 7 to 11 pm for a great opening and September 16 to October 16 for how long the show is up. And the address is 1109 Dekalb, off the Kosciuzcko stop on the J train, close to the intersection of Dekalb and Broadway. Be there or be square!

Wayfarers FOR!!! Beautiful graphic by fellow Wayfarer, R. Kikuo Johnson

First Wayfarers Show!

August 21, 2011

I am still working on settling in to a routine of work, studio and play, so I haven’t been as regular with these posts as I would like… But soon, very soon, I think things will calm down a little. But not until after our first group show! Wayfarers will be hosting a show in our gallery at 1109 Dekalb featuring all the artists in the collective with an opening reception on Friday, September 16. If you can make it out, I would love to see you here! I am also happy to show you my studio and the other work I have been plugging away at since my arrival in June, so let me know if you think you can make it. The show should be up for 5 or 6 weeks, so there will be plenty of time to see it if you can’t come on the 16th. Hope to see some of you here! Check out this time lapse video, filmed over the course of four weeks at VCCA, that is related to what I will be showing:

Summer in the City

July 17, 2011

After six weeks in the city, with an entirely new life and lifestyle (nearly everything that can change has changed!), I am finally beginning to settle into something that may resemble a routine. I am getting the hang of my new job as a sculpture conservator, which is both crazy awesome and crazy tedious, the hour long commute there and back, the bike ride to studio, my new neighborhood of Bushwick, and all those little things like new bank accounts, po boxes, library cards, grocery shopping and cooking, laundry, cleaning, etc. I’ve managed to gather a lot of my stuff that has been scattered throughout New England, though I still owe Boston and Providence a trip in order to pick up a few more things stored there. The studio is as organized as it can get for now (still need to find some sturdy industrial shelving to get some of my crap off the floor) and I’ve launched into a new set of drawing experiments. Wayfarers will have our first group show opening September 2, so I’m hoping to resolve some of the work I started at VCCA in time for that show, though I have a long way to go! The work is heading in a new direction, which I am very excited about, but will require a lot of time learning and experimenting to complete. I’m going to try and get back into the habit of writing updates fairly consistently, but for now getting an entry every couple weeks seems to be about as much as I can manage. So until then, here are some images of the studio…

the studio...

stuff growing, two dimensionally and three dimensionally...

references and other stuff...

Calm Before the Storm

June 6, 2011

After much nervousness and many anxiety dreams, I have arrived in Brooklyn! My residency at VCCA ended yesterday, June 5th, and I drove straight from there to Bushwick to unload all of the new work into my new studio at Wayfarers Brooklyn. I haven’t unpacked anything yet… there isn’t much point until I have some functional surfaces to set the tanks up on so until then I am just kind of hanging out in here. I start my new job at Wilson Conservation tomorrow, then will spend the evening building sawhorses for my first piece of studio furniture, and hopefully will be able to set the tanks up no later than Wednesday evening. They definitely have to be up and running before I leave the city for the weekend so… if I have to bust some ass to make it happen, so be it! Since I didn’t have to go in to work today as planned, and the wood for my sawhorses doesn’t arrive until tomorrow, today has been an unexpected day off to wander the neighborhood, buy a few supplies, and generally rest up and chill out before the real hustling begins. It definitely feels like the calm before the storm… And since I don’t move into my apartment until the 15th, the couch surfing makes it feel like I am still a visitor, even though I have a studio. Guess the fact that I’ve just moved to the city won’t sink in for another couple of weeks…

my beautiful new studio, filled with all the crap I could fit in my tiny car

soon to be my first piece of furniture

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