January 29, 2011

Art is a luxury- just like this beer

How incredibly unfortunate is that art is a privilege in 'MERICA.  It makes art feel sleazy when it's catering to or for the people who can afford it.  The battle for grant money for the "underprivileged" and the amount of bullshit one has to go through to receive them is a pretty discouraging ratio for the overworked and underpaid people who are vying for them.  I'm not surprised as to where my interests have gotten me.  I am overly aware of what matters to me in life and why i love to do what i do.  However, i really dislike that i've already figured out how blatantly i have become part of the socioeconomic culture in which we live in that requires me to sing and dance and "prove" the improvement of a community in order to do so.  It's a forced way of actually educating people and offering them "opportunities that otherwise would not be available" that just gives you a forced outcome.  this sucks.  This sucks even more than dealing with educational paradigms that are obsolete.  Our culture doesn't allow for art to be part of ones daily life without a cost.  It isn't revered or readily accessible to everyone.  THIS SUCKS TOO. Aesthetic experiences go beyond improving your emotional well being, they are also a way to fully engage your mind, have direct applications for learning, and can create an amazing social platform for a community.  It's unfortunate that so many things take precedence over art.  I understand that people have certain basic needs to be fulfilled  such as food, water, shelter... HOWEVER, if art was a practice by which we fulfill these basic needs- WELL THAT WOULD BE NICE NOW EH?  ART AS A TOOL TO SHAPE SOCIETY(not to be confused with artists who are tools...) I WANT THAT.  America, you are so dumb.  You are really really dumb.  hide yer wife, hide yer kids-YES I WENT THERE. xoxo

January 15, 2011

It's Grant Writing Season

Which is both exciting and terrifying.  Deciding which ones are worth slaving hours over to apply to is a handful in itself- and then there's the hoop jumping and proving the unproveable... egh.  The NEA provides government grants that basically put you through hell to apply to them.... buuuut i was reading their website for what they're calling Creative Placemaking and it gave me a "well hm!" moment...

"In creative placemaking, partners from public, private, nonprofit, and community sectors strategically shape the physical and social character of a neighborhood, town, city, or region around arts and cultural activities. Creative placemaking animates public and private spaces, rejuvenates structures and streetscapes, improves local business viability and public safety, and brings diverse people together to celebrate, inspire, and be inspired."

So apparently when i grow up i want to be a creative placemaker? I think this only furthers the hokeyness of my claiming to be a restorative nurturer...  regardless, it's getting me closer to figuring out that bridge i live on that's between art and the artsworld.  

And in case you were wondering, yes- this is the most important bridge in the world...

January 12, 2011

my fav 4 letter word

Today a puppy stared at me mischievously (as if he knew how much i probably deserved it) and proceeded to poop on the studio floor... and then run in the corner and pee.  Hours later i decided to start talking to my new mouse friend (who i've yet to name) and someone finally realized the hot water heater wasn't working.  Due to cold water, being in the cold basement, being pretty outta shape, and having the joints of a 72 yr old...well, i hurt all over. And yes actually- it was a fantastic second day for my ceramics internship in upstate NY.

But what about the art center?  Don't worry, i just spent the last few weeks running around like a crazy person making sure everything was in order before i left so i could continue my job via satellite location for 2 months.  Yes- that is pretty amazing that i get to continue working (and get paid) while away in the frozen countryside making 450 pieces of pottery for the studio's fundraiser.  Brings a little tear to the eye thinkin about how supportive my art center really is. <3 <3 <3

The working environment at the art center is one that i am proud to be part of.  The art center has always been known as a place that cultivates artists and helps them advance in their artistic careers.  Given it's homelike nature, it's only natural for it to function on a personal level.  Though this may cause obvious issues (such as disorganized or emotional messes), i don't think i ever want to be part of a place that's run differently.  I feel like corporations try to fake their way into feeling like a family by using the word "camaraderie" too much and having company retreats. 

Being at this studio in upstate NY has been fantastic, and i already feel at home and genuinely cared for/about.  Granted, this place functions primarily as an artist residency program (then secondly as a community arts center) so things are bound to feel "homey" due to the nature of it's purpose.  There are many similarities between this place and my art center, and i could not be more grateful for the learning experiences i have had and will have with these 2 institutions.  Oh yeah- and the whole getting paid for making art AND my job back home is pretty sweet too.  Even with the poop.

Where i'm staying
Where i'm workin :)