Wednesday, September 23, 2020

Keep art alive so it keeps us alive


Whenever I introduce myself in an online art class, I say that I'm a writer and that I don't really know anything about art. Both these things are true, but I spend more time making things than writing these days. I don't know why. A craving for the visual? A weariness of words?

The book above is a riff on  the exquisite corps game. I made it a few weeks ago. Now there could be even more pages, I suppose, since the world grows worse.  It's a flip book. The pages are divided into three sections, no matter what part you flip all the sections of the body line up.

 You can have a person of color whose legs are standing in a pool of blood, a pregnant belly, and a child's head, for example.

Mostly I've been making blank books. The filling will come later. I have a drawer of handmade books.

And my desk is stacked with my next projects. A different style that I will be practicing. It's called drum-leaf, I think. I don't know why. They're real hard cover little books like the one standing on edge in the photo below. Sometimes I use my own hand marbled or hand made paper for the covers. 

I like turning their small pages.

I think my deepest passion is collage. I took a mail art class several weeks ago from an artist I met in 2009 at the Vermont Studio Center. I keep trying to remember a significant conversation we had--all I can recall is that he grew up in Iowa. Mostly we were in the meditation chapel together every morning before breakfast. So far, I've made over 40 collage postcards that I've sent to friends and family.

I can't wait to make more.

Now I'm taking a collage class from the same artist. We're studying a different artist each week and making bigger collages inspired by the works of that week's artist. Today was Hanna Höch, and I made this. It's 12x12 so I can't mail it to anyone. I love Dada. I love the surrealists. But you can't hang that stuff on your walls or no one will come to dinner.........oh.......wait......

I've now given myself permission to age ungracefully.


Elizabeth said...

My gosh, Denise! This is fantastic. I, too, am drawn to the visual more and more, but I do not know what I am doing. I'd like to take some sort of online course in collage -- any recommendations?

Jules said...

Lovely books, as usual.