The Longest Day

End of peonie blooms

Peonie, pink, spent

Picture of a spider
We are in the centre of summer. There’s a snake in the garden.

Cartoon of a threatening snake
WIP: see it finished on Saatchi.

Watercolor, life-in-process

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MischMasch Monday

Anna Bolena opera sketch
Weekend entertainment: Anna Bolena, by Gaetano Donizetti, based on the tragic history of Henry VIII’s marriage to, and eventual beheading of, Anne Boleyn.

Here’s a rubber and glue marriage: making a brand-new, faulty product work. (‘n Boer maak ‘n plan!)

 Another tumultuous relationship:
Cartoon about Riviera, Kahlo and avocados
‘Hope you had Happy Mother’s Day!
Flowers in the studio

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Little Thinks and eMissions

Making vs. Selling

I have been thinking about artist statements, which led to Jasper Rigole’s letter to the Curator on 500letters.org, which is very funny. Here is My Mission Statement, using his wonderful application:

Michelle De Villiers is an artist who works in a variety of media. By contesting the division between the realm of memory and the realm of experience, De Villiers formalizes the coincidental and emphasizes the conscious process of composition that is behind the seemingly random works. The thought processes, which are supposedly private, highly subjective and unfiltered in their references to dream worlds, are frequently revealed as assemblages.
Her artworks never shows the complete structure. This results in the fact that the artist can easily imagine an own interpretation without being hindered by the historical reality. By experimenting with aleatoric processes, she tries to increase the dynamic between audience and author by objectifying emotions and investigating the duality that develops through different interpretations.
Her works feature coincidental, accidental and unexpected connections which make it possible to revise art history and, even better, to complement it. Combining unrelated aspects lead to surprising analogies. By examining the ambiguity and origination via retakes and variations, she absorbs the tradition of remembrance art into daily practice. This personal follow-up and revival of a past tradition is important as an act of meditation.

Her collected, altered and own works are being confronted as aesthetically resilient, thematically interrelated material for memory and projection. The possible seems true and the truth exists, but it has many faces, as Hanna Arendt cites from Franz Kafka.


The tulips are flowering!

flowering bulbs

I enjoyed Big Thinks’ Think Again podcast with Kristen Radtke (Graphic Novelist) – The Fascination of What’s Difficult. It also features Gene Luan on art and empathy and Chris Hadfield on information and authority. Those peasants with the pitchforks! It also brought to mind the old saying: “Meng jou met die semels dan vreet die varke jou op”, or as Chris Hadfield put it : “If you wrestle with a pig, then the best you can be is a pig-wrestler.”

A picture book about the first animals on a hot air balloon.

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Sphinxed

I have started a new sculpting as I muse upon some of the books I’ve read/listened to, am-reading. I enjoyed Pride and Prejudice (Austen) on Librivox, then started Emma – but the first bit made me fall asleep; I have sort of finished Behave (Sapolsky), but struggled to focus a bit as well. So did The Small Rain (L’Engle) fail me. Luckily, there is Dark State (Stross) to look forward to, and I have started Down Girl: The Logic of Misogyny (Kate Manne; “sexism is scientific (patriarchal ideology that justifies and rationalizes social order), misogyny moralistic (the system that polices and enforces its governing norms and expectations”), which is excellent thus far. To add to that, I’ve procured Women and Power (Beard) and also Inferior: How Science Got Women Wrong – and the New Research That’s Rewriting the Story (Saini). Also on Archive.org: The Good Earth (Buck), good.

Squat Pose

I have become disused to the feel of it:
the slick wetness and grit,
the messiness of clay.
I keep wanting to wash my hands;
‘have bent the soft wire frame,
stuck it into the pink polystyrene block,
tore paper strips and wrapped it, somewhat.
Is this the right order?
When will the process flow again?
This is physical finger digital
slow
-lest one be accused of precipitousness-
I have to stop a while;
wash my hands,
now with clay half-moons under the nails.
I wrap the damp cloth around the clay stump-
the severed limb of a golem.

From the sanskrit naravirala "man cat"
Based on a moth I saw in Caicos. I could not identify it, but think it might have been a Titan sphinx. Alas, I couldn’t find as useful an app as Merlin Bird ID, (which id’d my Ruddy Turnstone quite readily, even from a sketch) for moths. Influenced by what I’m reading…there’s the sphinx‘s puzzle.
I’ve bought a few new watercolour cubes, clay and some brushes and paper – always fun. The clay was frozen rock hard when it was delivered; I feared it might be for the worse, but its texture is fine and creamy, now that it’s defrosted.

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