Saturday, June 28, 2008

Greek Paintings

Here are some of my new paintings. Showed them to a few friends last night, the reaction was mostly positive.
I have only a few more days left to paint here. Then my time, sadly, is up.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

What is Coming

What do you do when there is no happy ending to the story? When every possible outcome is painful? You can know that it is coming, but it still blindsides you every step.
This is what I’m faced with.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Poem by a Sweet Boy

Pretty nice
Cooking working playing
Mom Mom Mom Mom
Buying working dancing
Good smart
Great Mom

Monday, June 23, 2008

Missing You, My Anatolian Venice

Wish I was there, too.

Sunday, June 22, 2008


Friends have always been an essential part of my life. Except those few years I had babies. During those years I just didn’t have time or energy for my friends. But most of my old friends hung in there.
And now I find myself with lots of new friends, and feel so blessed. We get together to drink coffee or beer, talk art or education or blogging, We walk and travel and eat sushi. My friends message me, send me photos of their new work, make me laugh with funny emails.
My friends are mostly women, but some men, younger and older than I am, artists and athletes and neighbors. I even have some teen friends who keep me laughing with their exploits.
Kisses to you.

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Painting Frenzy

Every day I go to my borrowed studio, slide the door shut, and layer the paint, fling it, slap it, slather it on my unstretched canvases. My “white” paintings start out very colorful, painfully so. I suppose I like the challenge, how to be generous with pure hue, and then slowly take it away, gray it down, layer by layer.
I’ve got six paintings started now, all based on iconic Classical and Hellenistic Greek sculptures of women—the Phidian wet look, which I adore (clothes so thin you see the body underneath, because women were not allowed to be depicted undressed). At the same time I’m again trying to reach abstraction, as I did a year ago with my knitting paintings.
I paint a body underneath the sculpture, and let it show through a bit.
Have been inspired by a friend’s work, and am trying to convince him to show with me. Are you convinced yet?

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Sugar Museum

This show was a benefit for the Sugar Museum, a virtual museum (doesn’t have a building) dedicated to making art with sugar and other foods to promote awareness and creativity. My part was a performance involving all the kids: we made pancake faces at the opening and the kids “sold” them. Very fun, especially when, on his very first attempt, 01 squeezed chocolate frosting all over his tie.
(two dioramas made by kids)

Monday, June 16, 2008


Here are some snaps from the show I helped curate last week. The art was created by both kids and artists, and it was to be made mostly of food, perishable or non. Very fun.

Saturday, June 14, 2008

School’s Out for Summer!

Last day of elementary school. I spent the morning teaching 60 kindergarteners how to hula hoop, five at a time. We did hips, arm, neck, foot, jump rope, tossing… felt like circus school. Some of the boys especially were ecstatic to learn the mechanics of this so-called girl activity, and a few even came back a second time. And yes, I did get a welt around my bare arm from repetitive friction…
So somewhere the Great Elementary School Goddess looked down upon me and smiled. Kid.01 tested into the Gifted and Talented Program. Even better, 02’s kindergarten teacher, an amazing woman famed throughout the region, is teaching first grade next year and he has the option of looping with her (two years consecutive with the same teacher). I was so relieved I cried, cause we were faced with the prospect of a weak teacher for him next year.
See, volunteering has multiple payoffs.

Friday, June 13, 2008

Worrying Signs in Lalaland

• Went into a Subway the other day, all the workers were behind plexi. I thought it was for sanitary reasons, but the cashier was also enclosed. He told me they’d been robbed multiple times, along with the other businesses around. This was in an OK neighborhood.
• Went into my bank, and there were big signs to take off hats and sunglasses. Again, robbery, in a supposedly safe, upscale suburban neighborhood.
• Went in to teach, and found out the week before the entire school had been shut down and classes cancelled for a day. The brass handles on the water main had been stolen, which meant no water for flushing.
• Went to a pretty classy dessert bar in the downtown area. There was an armed guard at the door. He was nice. Explained that earlier there’d been a shooting. Right there.
Angels are falling. (Artwork by a student.)

Wednesday, June 11, 2008


The other day I was parked downtown, waiting in my car, and a homeless man walked by. I noticed him because he was using two artist drawing boards bungeed together for a suitcase. He was very tall and dressed all in black; he didn’t look like he’d been on the street long. I locked my car doors because I felt a twinge of aggressiveness in his stride.
He changed his course right in front of me and crossed the street to a Mexican restaurant, obviously checking out the garden patio. My fear turned to pity as I guessed he was looking for a place to stay the night.
He passed his “suitcase” through the bars of the eight foot fence and climbed over it. It was dusk and he walked into the shadows. I saw him moving some chairs around to make a shelter. But then he folded the chairs up and passed three of them through the bars, hopped the fence, and carried his goods away.
I’ve eaten a burrito at that restaurant, it’s family owned and not fancy. Should I have done something?

Monday, June 09, 2008


This wall hanging (Dusasa II, 2007) is by El Anatsui, an artist from Ghana. From far away it looks like seashells in a net, but close up you find it is discarded bottle caps and liquor seals woven into copper wire. He is considered one of Africa’s foremost living sculptors.
(at the Met)

Sunday, June 08, 2008

Artists are so Weird

We spend tons of time doing strange stuff that really has no point: making unsellable art, attending art openings, curating shows, carting stuff around, spending precious money and resources on art that won’t get us anywhere in the long run. It’s hard to understand, even for me, who does these sorts of things frequently (like today, will show pics soon). We do them because that’s what turns us on. As a friend told me, it keeps us in the game.
Another SoCal tree in spring bloom. Coral, I think.

Saturday, June 07, 2008

Back Home…

In SoCal, where the jacarandas are in bloom, gas is $4.40/gallon, and school is almost out. A generous and supportive friend has offered me the use of her painting studio while she is out of the country for a month, and I’ve already moved in (thanks so much, J!).
And to my other lovely friend in NYC, you gave me such a gift to let me work in your studio, paint with you, share your home and friends with me, give me honest advice, encourage me, inspire me! Wish I could be there more often.
And miss you already.

Friday, June 06, 2008

Sigalit Landau

At the Museum of Modern Art there was a strange circle/spiral themed show (strange because of the simplistic-to-the-point-of-being-dumb idea, and yes, Spiral Jetty was included). One artist redeemed the show for me: Sigilit Landau, an Israeli video/performance artist and sculptor.
Above are stills from DeadSee (2005), a video of 500 watermelons strung together, floating in a spiral enveloping her nude body. Over the course of the five minute video loop the spiral unwinds, and she slowly floats out of the frame. Magical and weird.
In Barbed Hula (2000) she hula-hoops nude on the shores of the Mediterranean with barbed-wire, gradually cutting welts into her skin. It is mesmerizing and horrifying at the same time. I loved this work, really fresh but so connected to older female body artists like Yoko Ono, Marina Abramovic and Hannah Wilke. It functioned as a metaphor for both Israel and beach culture, and really thrashed the male (or any) gaze.

Thursday, June 05, 2008

American Girl

Here I am with friends on the beach in the Hamptons…
Not really, I’m at the flagship American Girl store in Manhattan. What a total freak out. Not my kind of place, let me tell you. And the noise level, I thought boys were bad. Wowza.
As a Bratz, I feel I’m affordable, a big plus. They may make the AG in all skin tones, but I’m sure they sell mostly white chicks to daddy’s little girls.

Tuesday, June 03, 2008

Painting Maniac

I painted more in the past three days than I have in six months. I got a much clearer picture of where I need to go.
Here I am with an old painting we just stretched. Pretty dramatic, no?

Sunday, June 01, 2008

East Hampton

Today I painted in a large studio all day. Worked on four paintings, one small gouache from a model, two from a previous series, and one trial for a new series of white paintings. It was good at the end of the day to sit in front of all these paintings and look at them; the studio is very large and can handle multiple works. I’m realizing I need a place to work, not just in my garage or my classrooms. If I had a studio I could look at multiples, comparing and making critical judgments. I need to address this.
East Hampton itself is moneyed. And all white. When to breakfast and an omelet cost $16, cup of coffee $4. And I saw three men in the space of 20 minutes in pink shirts.