Greetings to you at Mid-Autumn and happy Halloween, Samhuin, Dia de los Muertos, All Soul’s Day. Along with peoples of many cultures, I celebrate the Night of the Ancestors by remembering my parents and grandparents. In the Celtic tradition we believe that by telling stories about them, placing their beloved objects out, offering some special treats and lighting candles to guide their way to us, we will not be tricked by forgetting them. In this war-torn year, it is a more solemn night than usual.
With this in mind, I remembered the Home of the Ancestors shrine, created 17 years ago for an art show. In it were pencil drawings of my parents and grandparents with feather shapes torn out and collaged over the drawings. This symbolized their passing into spirit. Those feather shapes of Japanese paper were attached to stem fronds. Petal shapes from the paper were fastened around poppy seed pods, an homage to them as veterans. Some were placed in my grandfather’s Cuban cigar tubes that he repurposed into a palette knife holder. Creating this brought comfort to me.
Detour from the Liminal Lane
In the last update I declared that I had been living “life in the liminal lane” (neither here nor there). You have received your invitation to the 15th Annual Autumn Open Studio, so you know I’ve decided to be more here than there. It’s a definite shift in focus outward, one that takes me forward with no stops.
I’m here in the studio organizing the presentation of art I’ve been keeping as mysterious as I can. To read about how I came up with this year’s theme Curiosity~Mystery~All Heart, click here (ha, ha). I’m here in the studio imagining new features for the event, like Greg’s talk about the ancient history of the land the studio inhabits.
I’m here envisioning the joy of social time with old and new friends chatting with refreshments during the coffee~tea gathering and happy hour later. Being here with art loving chums in an environment that best showcases my recent art is more important than sales.
Here are some details of just one of the new art collections.
This year’s online Holiday Special will be released on 3 Saturdays by email.
Holiday Special part 1, November 11: “To You” a series of watercolor postcards packed in a translucent envelope, stamped and ready to send for a special gift and new greeting card sets.
Holiday Special part 2, November 18: Beads of the Season, a collection of rare bead necklaces and bracelets, with bead ID packed in a recycled sari silk pouch.
Holiday Special part 3, November 25, Small Business Saturday: “Atmospheres”, a series of ethereal abstract watercolor paintings, 7×10” and Art Candy Boxes.
Gallery Hop in Danville
Connie Beale has invited me to show my art, jewelry and new greeting cards at her shop, CAMP in Danville for the Gallery Hop on November 9, from 4:30 – 7 PM. It was pure fun to create a new Christmas card set. It’s joyful to see friends there at the Gallery Hop events.
A lot of my studio time in the past few months was spent with beads. I made a series of monochromatic Chakra necklaces and bracelets, and many more. Added to the mix is a new fascination with contemporary lampwork Czech beads. My love of antique and ancient beads encouraged me to catalog them. When they are handed down, it’s important that their history stays with them. Some look rather ordinary, yet carry a legacy of handmade treasure thousands of years old. For the Bead Demo at Shaker Village of Pleasant Hill, the displays brought awareness of this facet of human activity to the curious visitors.
It was a strange season for growing things. It’s always a guess if we will have a freeze before the open studio and then have to take down the morning glory wall on the porch. They struggled so hard during the drought that we took them down in mid-October. We also had very few tomatoes, only one pear and no figs. The critters ate them all, and emptied the bird baths and fountain daily. I tried to think of it as less work, more time for art making. What was your season like?
For your pleasure
One of the musical treats from the Birdsongs playlist you will hear at the open studio, Well-Tempered Wood Thrush, by Paul Winter: https://open.spotify.com/track/5545Zzx3fPcwtEx9ZwMFyB?si=9e459ed1990c4bda
As we enter the dark half of the year I think of you with gratitude for the help and loving kindness you send to me. With many emails getting lost or disregarded in the ethers, it means very much to me that you read and take what I write to heart. Thank you.