Sunday, January 29, 2012

Mobile Home - Human Made Nest - Nest in Trees

I have become quite birdlike over the last two days. While photographing bird nests in trees on 4th Ave with my son, we came across a chicken wire basket sitting on a post. Both of us at the same time said, "it would make a great birds nest". So today we went to the park and built a bird nest with the basket. It was such a fun and fulfilling experience. My husband and son ran around Ambleside Park collecting twigs and I arranged them into a nest.  I didn't realize how much I had studied the construction of nests until I built one from twigs. My visual memory bank allowed me to structure it in a very similar fashion to the birds.

I just love it. I hope that the curators that see my nest series next week love it too. It is truly a mobile home. It is really big with the longest twig being 36". The chicken wire basket that it began with is hardly visible.

My son is working on a nest series in photos. He hopes to suspend photos on a wire in a gallery not frame them in frames. The suspension creating a visual duplication of the suspension of the nests in the trees.

Here are images of my nest building and photos of nests by Trint Thomas. 


Saturday, January 21, 2012

Calculated Risk - Poker Chips

This was one of my last pieces in the nest series, I forgot to post it last week. I am however, still unsure if I want to make it slightly different or if it is done. A work of art is never finished it simply stops in interesting places. Paul Gardner.

It is called "Calculated Risk" and is super large 32 x 46". It is one of the last in my nest egg series. Inspired by Doug Little's book and life.  Doug and his wife are friends of mine. He wrote a book called Losing Mariposa: The Memoir of a Compulsive Gambler

All the little nests are in a row holding onto their nest egg but one is taking off and doing his own thing with a gambling chip (a calculated risk??), the nest has even turned his nest away from others.

I think it is a work in process or progress and I am waiting for the call for what to do next. I do know that Doug's life has inspired me. His book comes to my mind often and it makes me think about what moves people, what causes them to make certain choices and whether destiny is really something to believe in. Was Doug destined to go down this path???

I had never held a poker chip in my hand until starting this piece. (I know you are thinking get out and get a life, stop making art for a while)  I was in a second hand store searching for LEGO for my students and found poker chips in a beautiful steel box. I was astonished as the aesthetic appeal of the chips and bought them knowing they would become part of my art at some point. The weight, the texture and the pattern is incredible. I have manipulated the colour on the chip to work with the piece. I placed the nest that I see as Doug on the edge as I think anyone with an addiction is somewhat on the edge all the time, whether actively feeding their addiction or fighting their addiction.

Ps. the shadows make it hard to see the piece but it is so difficult to photograph large pieces of paper, I don't have the space.

Friday, January 20, 2012

The Nest - on blueprints

I was lucky enough to be given old blueprints.  I decided to print a nest over top of it as of course we create a little nest for ourselves in our home, decorating and displaying the things that make use feel comfortable and safe.

The 7 piece series is from the same set of house plans. 

Monday, January 16, 2012

New Print - "And it Continues"

This print was inspired by the maple seeds I was surrounded by when artist in residence at the Bytown Museum in Ottawa. I was astonished at how  many seeds fell to the ground in the quest to continue the species.  It makes me contemplate all animal existence, including human, and our purpose within the workings of the world.

And it Continues 
Ink on Mulberry Paper 
20 x 12",  51 x 31 cm

And it Continues Through Flight
Ink on Mulberry Paper 
20 x 23",  51 x 58 cm

Sunday, January 15, 2012

An Ocean Between Us - The TearROOM Project

I have been collecting human tears for about 1.5 years. The tears are going to be part of an exhibition this April and May 2012 at the

Museum of Antiquities Link
Room 116 College Building
107 Administration Place
University of Saskatchewan
Saskatoon, SK

The exhibition will showcase the tears I have collected. I just finished the display for a special set of tears. My friend fell in love with a man from  Belgium. They rarely get to see each other. This past Christmas he asked her to marry him. The tears in the jar inside the glass box are tears of joy and sadness at his parting. There is an ocean between them most of the time and the tears in the jar mark that distance.

These special tears are encased in a glass box. I also have tears mounted in deep box frames with marbling behind them. Other pieces in the series can be viewed at the following link

An Ocean Between Us 
3 x 3 x 7" 
Glass, Steel, Vial, Paper and String

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Nests in Trees on Broadway Ave.

I have permission to put the wire nest in the trees on Broadway Ave. My students will be creating 350 nests at my school, the Extended Learning Opportunities program will be making some and we will make some with the dance production I am involved in.

I am so excited. I counted the trees on Broadway that I want to use. There are about 108 trees, so about three colourful nests per tree. My caretaker has agreed to help with installation and I will be having my students help as well.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Nest Prints

Tonight I am uploading most of my nest prints that I have created. Most of them are mulitmedia with thread, book pages, pencil crayon, bank statements, ribbon, paint and ink. The main print is a two or three colour linocut. There are lots and lots of them. I have 8 more that I am working on presently and then I will be done with the nest prints. The artwork ranges in size from 9" to 30". Tomorrow I will post the real nests that inspired the artwork. My students from my school helped by donating some nests to my artistic journey and my husband and I climbed some trees.  I am nearing the end of this body of work which is always hard. It is hard to give up a concept. However, I am enjoying the thoughts and sketching that goes with beginning and new concept.