Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Bugs, beetles, moths & butterflies

I love insects because they are like gemstones on legs. Many of my designs try to capture the beauty, intricacy and delicateness of natures little warriors. I found these little critters totally alluring, I mean how often do you get to have such a long hard look at something so beautiful? Never! They are always just a flash in front of your eyes. The texture and radiance of them is extraordinary. Viva la bugdom!!

Saturday, May 08, 2010

I won the China Residency!!! :-)

HOORAY! I won the grant to go to China in September! I am sooooo excited! I am gonna make art! art! art! in China! China! China!!!! For 3 months! I am riding a massive high because I really wanted to go... really really... really.. 
First of all I love travelling, secondly I am a Buddhist and thirdly I am bursting at the seams to make things.

This 8-week artist residency is located in one of the most fascinating and ancient creative centres in China. The Pottery Workshop is an artist’s residential retreat offering artists from diverse cultures and skills the opportunity to interact, learn and create. It is situated on the site of an old National Porcelain Company Sculpture Factory in Jingdezhen China and is surrounded by hundreds of small and independent craftsmen and artists with every kind of ceramic skill; clay producers, throwers, sculptors, mould makers, blue and white decorators, overglaze decorators, glaze and colour shops, kiln firing workshops, brush makers, black smiths, box makers and shippers. What a dream come true...
This residency will stimulate and develop my existing skill base, whilst introducing me to a plethora of ancient Chinese decorative skills through a variety of workshops and lectures. Other participants and I will meet international and local artists/ craftspeople on a daily basis and do workshops with them. This 8 week residency will inspire growth in current practices as artists thrive in a vibrant atmosphere, surrounded by working artists and right in the heart of this fascinating city.

WHEN: 9th Sept- Dec 2010
I wanted to participate in the residency to the Pottery Workshop because the time is right for intensive artistic growth for me. Using my leadership qualities and amalgamating them with my zest for action and spirit of adventure, I believe I will experience inner and outer transformation in my arts practice by going to China. This cultural and artistic immersion will facilitate a journey into my inner world where I will create new ideas, gain insight into unknown fields of knowledge and perpetuate dramatic self experience. The creative wisdom gained here would be the beginning of some promising projects and mark the start of my transition into becoming a full time artist. 
The Workshop offers me an amazing opportunity in so many ways. It would allow me to exist in the art head-space that I enjoy so much. Going to China would infinitely inspire me as I would meet fellow artists, experience Chinese culture, learn new skills and acquire knowledge in a supportive and well resourced environment. I also look forward to meeting the masters and teachers in Jingdezhen, and being given the opportunity to share my own skills and experience in jewellery, ceramics and drawing with my Chinese hosts.
I also intend to do side trips to Beijing, Xian and Shanghai to experience the other Chinese artistic highlights such as the National Arts & Craft Museum, The Great Wall of China and the Terracotta Warriors.
The knowledge and skill acquired in this residency, is something I could not obtain in Australia. The amalgamation of practical contact, observation of masters at work, facilities and inspiration from fellow students will be invaluable nourishment. This learning experience will be vital for my art practice and will allow me to inform and enrich the local and national arts scene back in Australia.
As an Australian citizen I appreciate the incredible influence Asian culture has on our country. Our continent is placed centrally in the Asia-Pacific region which affects our social climate, political and trade concerns, as well as our food and cultural practices. I believe that the more alliances and relationships that Australia can forge with surrounding countries the more understanding and acceptance we can have between us. There is much potential value for all parties involved in liaising with our Asian neighbours and I wish to be a part of this alliance.

Now time to go and celebrate! POP!!!

Wednesday, May 05, 2010

Contracting before expanding

Sometimes our lives contract before they expand. I can feel mine doing it at the moment. I am aware that I am in the middle of shifting from one stage to another in my artistic life. I have spent the last couple of years growing, studying, learning and absorbing. I feel full to the eye balls with inspiration, and grumpy that there is never enough time spent in the studio! Hopefully if I get to go to China then I will have 2 months solidly in a fully equipped workshop.

I was starting to feel a little discouraged at my lack of output the last few months, as there has definitely been a lack of progress. Now I realise the progress has been internal. Sometimes this is simply the way life works. The contraction and expansion of the inner and outer world. Like a catapillar that confines itself to a tiny cocoon before it grows wings and flies, I am experiencing the darkness of the potent cocoon.

I need surrender to the experience, so that I can move through the tightness and into the opening on the other side quickly. So many ideas, just need to make the time to create. My old foe- the delicate life/ work balancing act.