The installation is complete and the gallery opens tomorrow to preview our exhibition. Exhibiting with two local artists -Julie Elliot and Cee Bond - both as passionate about printmaking as me!
We have been meeting in Julie's beautiful studio, nearly once a month since we first met at the end of 2010. Working in the same space together with these two incredible ladies has been really fun and very inspiring. We each work in different ways but connected on so many levels while sharing the experience of working together for a common goal - the goal to make at least 10 prints each to bring together and exhibit this month. All of us have busy lives with all kinds of other commitments but we made this commitment to each other and ourselves to meet this goal.
I sometimes wonder how something that I am so passionate about can be so hard to set time aside for. Maybe its a kind of guilty pleasure? Printmaking certainly takes me to a place where nothing else matters. Allowing myself that creative space always feels good once I get there but how can I justify taking so much time away from the everyday needs of family and work?
Working with other artists really helps clear up those doubts of 'can I really spare the time' because you plan together and set goals together and schedule time together and your collective plan becomes a common objective that benefits not only you but the group.
Add to that the other creative talents that have come together to create this exhibition and we can really celebrate the collaborative experience. Curators Jim Kalnin and Katie Brennan have put into words what I could only feel but not say or write. They have made textual sense of the perceived and imagined.
Katie then had the seemingly impossible choice of picking out 30-40 prints in total from our suddenly expanded three collections. My 10 print goal had somehow turned into 49 prints! And then the hanging - how to make visual sense in a room full of short walls, doors, windows and three distinct collections - with sub-collections! The dream within the dream (Inception!). With the assistance of the lovely Heather Leier, Katie completed her 'Zen gardening' and set to work magnetically pinning the delicate full printed sheets to the walls. And miraculously a stack of paper becomes a show!
So the Install is complete, the publication printed (thanks to Shauna Oddleifson's wonderful design talents, inspired painless photography by Wanda Lock and Yuri Akuni plus Ursula at UBR printing to perfection at a moment's notice!)
And then there's the Gallery volunteers who came and helped re-paint the gallery over the holiday! Margaret, Lorraine, Suzanne, Bob, Cee - and Tina this evening finishing off with crisp white base-boards. I feel in such a special place to be part of this whirl of creative activity and talent and collaboration.
And now we get to share all this with gallery visitors and the Lake Country Community through January and February. What an exciting time!I look forward to seeing you there!