Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Conversations on Craft 4/16 at OCAC

I'm looking forward to being part of this conversation this coming Thursday April 16. I like the emphasis on "persistence" rather than "value" in the following description of the event- it frames it more as an inquiry rather than manifesto:
"Craft's persistent presence in a contemporary culture suspicious of labored beauty and material literacy."

speakers including:
  • Howard Risatti (Moderator) - Emeritus Professor of Contemporary Art and Critical Theory, Department of Art History, Virginia Commonwealth University
  • Don Crow - Instructor in Residence OCAC MFA in Craft
  • Anna Gray and Ryan Wilson Paulsen - The Ford Family Foundation sponsored Golden Spot Artist in Residence at OCAC
  • Jeffry Mitchell - The Collins Foundation sponsored Artist in Residence at OCAC
  • Ben Buswell - The Ford Family Foundation sponsored Golden Spot Artist in Residence at OCAC
  • Sarah McDermott - The Collins Foundation sponsored Artist in Residence at OCAC

Sunday, February 15, 2015

Processing flax

I've been processing flax at OCAC this past weekend. This is flax that I planted last May, harvested in September, and let ret through December.

Here are some photos of the process:

After breaking

Not traditional but it works

Gets rid of most of the shive


Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Cuba, OCAC, Shows

Getting caught up here, it's been a busy few months!

1. In December, I went to Havana, Cuba for 3 weeks. I primarily went to visit a friend, but ended up working on an unanticipated book project with a printmaker- Julio C. Peña Peralta- at the Taller Experimental de Graficos- the printmaking workshop that my grad program at the University of Alabama has an ongoing relationship with. I showed up to see and share work, and Julio and I felt an affinity in our styles, so we decided to undertake a project. It was a bit harebrained as it was over the holidays, I had no tools, and we didn't have much time in general. Basically we made the book in five days: one day papermaking, one day planning, one day prepping, one day printing, and one day binding. Somehow we pulled it off! It was fun working with Julio and great to be introduced to the poetry of Rito Ramon Aroche (

Here are a few pictures of the process:

2. Three days after I got back from Havana, I started driving cross country to Portland, Oregon where I will be Artist-in-Residence in Book Arts and a guest instructor at Oregon College of Art and Crafts for the spring semester. I will get to hang out with the excellent Barb Tetenbaum and will be working on a new book(like) project. Veronika Schapers (German book artist) and Howard Risatti (craft theorist) have visits slated this semester so I am already anticipating overstimulation! I've been here a week, and I started processing the flax that I harvested in September. Check back here for (probably infrequent) updates.

3. My work can be found in a few current and upcoming shows: 
-Artists' Maps at Fenwick Gallery of the George Mason University Libraries, up through February 6th. Here's a write-up- I especially like the way they link to related books at the bottom, neat to have artists' books be an inspiration for further exploration:
-Beyond Words: Contemporary Book Arts at the Foothills Art Center in Golden, Colorado, which opened January 24.
-Artists' Book Cornucopia at Abecedarian Gallery in Denver, opening January 27.
-Approximate Exactitude: The Diagram and the Book at this year's Southern Graphics Conference (SGC- I have to go to this one of these years!) at the Emporium Art Center in Knoxville, TN, opening March 6. If you're going to the conference be sure to check it out, Sarah Smith curated, and it looks to be an interesting show!