Taking the time after a big event like Spring Into Art Open Studio to rerun the highlights through my mind makes me realize why I open the studio to the public. It can be summed in several ways; connections, conversations, conveniences, win-win for all.

Front room entry, what visitors saw when the walked in

Front room entry, what visitors saw when the walked in

Connections

There are lots of ways connections are an important part of my artist life, like collectors, AKA dear art-loving friends.

I am so fortunate to have long time friends like Marilyn, artist and art therapist, and PD, all around Renaissance man, who have been on board since we first moved here. They make the long trip here to share in the bounty of art and news, it goes both ways.

Marilyn Matthews with "Backstories 7" for her home

Marilyn Matthews with “Backstories 7” for her home

Marilyn Matthews matches

Marilyn Matthews matches

It’s so fun to choose the right talisman for friends who love to adorn themselves with wearable art jewelry, for their joy. Bobbie Newman found her fox and rooster.

Terri Pully, Bobbie Newman wearing "Talisman for Fox and Rooster", and KO'B

Terri Pully, Bobbie Newman wearing “Talisman for Fox and Rooster”, and KO’B

Neighbors count on me to host cultural events, and who thankfully help out on the cashier end, as Felicia does.

One of the best reasons is meeting new friends who tag along with longtime friends. Terri Hunter came with Kate Savage, director of Arts Connect, and I now know about her fabulous Foucault Pendulum mosaic work at the Lexington Public Library. Gwen Childs, former director of Berea Arts Council, brought Hunter Purdy. Where have you been all my life, fellow Golden Mean lover?

witty, wonderful Kate Savage with her new necklace

witty, wonderful Kate Savage with her new necklace

Terri Pully's Foucault Pendulum mosaic at Lexington Public Library

Terri Pully’s Foucault Pendulum mosaic at Lexington Public Library

Gwen Childs in the north room

Gwen Childs in the north room

Conversation

Open Studios are part sales event, part party. I thrive on conversation that comes best when meeting face to face.

Stan Brunn, Professor Emeritus of Geography, UK, and I have collaborated several times with his poetry as in our Drawn to the Earth exhibit. And he encouraged me to write a chapter, entitled “Art as a Language: An Atlas of Seasons Where Time and Space Intersect,” which is published in Handbook of the Changing World Language Map, edited by Stanley D. Brunn and Roland Kehrein (Springer, 2018).

He reported that there has been 44,000 chapters from the 230-chapter book downloaded from HANDBOOK OF THE CHANGING WORLD LANGUAGE MAP volume (6 volumes). My chapter is the 48th most downloaded, 238 times, which is very good!

Even better, he came with new invitations for both Greg and I to submit to his next massive project about TIME JOURNEYS. My chapter will convey my journey as artist from childhood to the present. Then share my lifelong passion for painting and crafts and also include examples of my own “art time journey”, any new paintings and an idea of a “time journey” title or theme. This falls right into my legacy focus, thank you, Stan! Also, for collecting four new Maps to the State of Grace.

"Map to the State of Grace 1" watercolor drawing by Kathleen O'Brien

“Map to the State of Grace 1” watercolor drawing by Kathleen O’Brien

Greg will write about ancient Buffalo and Indigenous Trails in Kentucky. More about that later.

I learned about Orthodox Easter, being celebrated this same weekend., with a gift of pastries and dyed eggs from Natalya Tyutenkova.

Orthodox Easter treats made by Natalya Tyutenkova

Orthodox Easter treats made by Natalya Tyutenkova

Another avid collector, of jewelry, regaled me of a fascinating story of how she and her husband mistakenly picked up a shell that turned out to house a live marine hermit crab, days after they arrived home. They lovingly researched how to keep it alive, bought an aquarium, fed it shrimp every day, gave it new shell homes when required, and returned it to the beach they found it seven months later. They watched as it swam safely back to its home. I’ll give her a gold star for earth day. she later sent me a photo, with the note that: “The shell he is holding onto is the one he lived in when I accidentally brought him home. He left in a shell close to the size of the one he’s in in this picture.”

marine hermit crab with original and new shell

marine hermit crab with original and new shell

And you can eavesdrop on conversations like the one PD was telling Felicia about tools he made out of repurposed mower blades, atlatls and other magnificent artifacts he has crafted. And hear Felicia chime in about her poetry, with Stan. Little did I know.

PD Matthews and Felicia sharing tall tales

PD Matthews and Felicia sharing tall tales

And PD, if you read this blog, these are the gem paints, especially Minnesota Pipestone, we were talking about.

Daniel Smith primatec gem paintsP

Daniel Smith primatec gem paintsP

Convenience

Some of you may remember when I held Open Studios in my home. Our home is a jewel, and we love hosting events here. But…converting it into a gallery, closing off certain areas and doing a deep clean was a challenge. I still need to convert the annex from studio to gallery showroom, but it is ultra-easy and I can let the house go to its lived-in look. I made a short video of how it looked set up, before visitors arrived.

 

With the new driveway there is very easy access to it, the adjacent outdoor seating and sanctuary trails.

It didn’t take long to put display items away, clear the decks for the next few months of production. I’ve missed painting, the brushes and paints are just on the shelf.

Thank you art lovers for coming this way, I know you had a good time which delights me to no end.

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