Wednesday, July 16, 2008
maybe getting somewhere
I had an aHa moment when we were at the panel last week. Since I was struggling with the cyanotypes, I decided to cut them up and cover the wall with them as if they are tiles. This kind of builds on something I thought of before coming here, which was to use the cyanotypes like bricks to build something that would be reminiscent of the Gate of Ishtar or one of the many blue mosques.
I've now become pretty adept at making the cyanotypes. I've set up a low-tech darkroom in my bathroom- since I've got the disabled suite (one of two) I don't have a skylight in there and it's very roomy. I brought in a table to coat the paper with chemicals and I can close the door with the vent on inside while they dry. They are not super-light sensitive anyway. I can use a 75 w. bulb in there while I work.
My studio has some angles in it so I'm working from the corner out. It's in very early stages- maybe there will be some dimension to it other than the wall angles. It reminds me of my blot series. The blues are quite beautiful and I'm trying to vary exposure and coating so that different shades result. Conceptually, it's very important that the images are all made by the sun.
I'm also working on my encyclopedia project and some small works on paper with sliced book pages. Today a few of us went to a gallery to see a show by Barry LeVa. The gallery was on an unpaved road in a very industrial area, and it was a wonderful space. The gallerist formerly ran a foundry in the building and did multiples for many blue-chip artists. He very generously showed us his living area and his collection of art. At one point he pointed to a group of very small works on paper that seemed very similar to what I'm doing with the book pages. I had sort of a strong reaction, which kind of amused everyone. Well, not the first time I've seen something that is related to what I'm doing. I loved the LeVa show. The gallery and the gallerist were so different from everything else going on in Santa Fe- it was a great pleasure to talk to him and see the show. He and his wife are hopping in their airstream trailer and going up to the mountains this weekend.
We had a lively game of charades last night. I highly recommend charades for a lot of laughs. Sometimes I think I would do just fine living communally like this. Meanwhile. the heavy rains come and go. We had major leaks in the studio last night.