In The Studio
What better way to cruise into a new week than working on projects in the studio. Yesterday was Monday– a studio day, when the EC artists are working on personal visual and performing arts projects.
Every artist needs to get out of the studio from time to time. To get out into the fresh air, stretch the legs, take a moment to reflect, or just have a snack.
The EC artists are no exception. We are in the studio 5 hours a day, 5 days a week, 12 months of the year … getting out of the studio a few times a month is a well-deserved break.
Outing days are limited to destinations within walking distance, so being downtown is great, as there are lots of interesting destinations.
One of our monthly outings is called Sweet Treat Tuesday. We venture out in search of a vendor selling sweet treats… on a Tuesday. We have a few other outings, too. Wired Wednesday– one Wednesday a month we go for a walk to get coffee (or cocoa or whatever). The Downtown Lowdown outing is new for 2016. We’ll be visiting cool businesses, learning about what they do, meeting the people who work there, and reporting back in a bi-monthly blog.
The EC artists are good customers and smart consumers. We know that if 12 to 15 of us suddenly descend upon a business, it can be overwhelming… so we’re patient. We stand in line and wait our turn. We are friendly and polite. We’re pretty easy to please, but if someone is not sure what they want, we will let other customers go ahead of us.
We like going to places where we can get good food, good service, and a good price. We like going places where we feel comfortable– where the people are cool, relaxed, and Continue reading
EC art is back in the EC shop. If you missed us at the Artisan Fair, don’t fret. The EC Office Shop is open all year in Room 6 on the 3rd floor of the Arts Center. With 4 short flights of stairs, you can get your shopping done and a nice burst of cardio while you’re at it! Or you could use the elevator, because we have one of those, too. Continue reading
The Merced County Arts Council is throwing it’s first ever Artageddon event.
The challenge: You have four hours to paint, using only the materials you are given. Weeks later, comes the competition… a single elimination tournament, judged by the audience. Winners move on to the next bout, and losers… are destroyed!!! The Wheel of Death determines the mode of destruction, and only an audience member’s purchase will save the painting. The winning painting not only survives destruction, but earns $500 for it’s creator.
This is mega-exciting, and we cannot wait!
The EC artists are embarking on a new project—public art. The project was initially inspired by an
image of J. Seward Johnson’s public art piece “Awakenings” depicting a giant embedded in the earth, struggling to free himself as he wakes. The image inspired conversations about the differences between public art and “private” art. Who is the public art is for? What is its purpose? What do people think when they see it? Does it change the way the artist creates, when the art will be public?
Phase 1 of our project involved understanding the role of public art in the world, and in our small town. We recognized that our project does not fit the standard definition of public art. Our project will not be sanctioned by any local government. Our art is not meant to be a permanent or fixed installation. We know it may move, be damaged, and even disappear. We want people to interact with our art. Our art will not be big, bold, and obvious. We want it to be small, subdued, and installed with guerrilla-style sneakiness. So, the project soon revealed itself as being more street art than public art. Same intention, different label.
Our ideas were all over the place during phase 1, until our clay/ceramic arts instructor Kristine Hansen introduced us to Ji Lee’s Mysterabbit project. The message? In this hustle-bustle world, stop to enjoy the moment—art is everywhere. We love that. We decided that Lee’s project was exactly what we were trying to achieve, in the same manner we were planning, but on a much (much) larger scale. It was the template we needed.
Once we decided what our overall project would look like, we walked around our neighborhood (Downtown Merced), to scope out locations for installation. We also needed to decide what our small sculptures would be.
It was important to everyone that they be simple and identifiable.
There was brainstorming, model making, and eventually we decided upon the snail.
Phase 2 of our project involves the making of our snails…