Thursday, December 29, 2011

AnitaNH Designs at Spoonflower

I have just opened a Spoonflower fabric shop! I have been talking about using my drawings as fabric designs for a while and I finally got the ball rolling. I have added a couple of designs just to see how the system works. I have to order a swatch of each of the designs to proof them before they can be offered for sale. 15 designs printed at once are much more cost effective than one at a time so I need to work up more designs. You can check my progress here:

Friday, December 16, 2011

Old Gold Visits New Mexico

I've recently discovered the Prelinger Archives, now a new Reference Link in the sidebar, and I blogged about it on The Temporary Blog yesterday. I've been browsing their Subject Heading list every time I get a spare moment. It's a fascinating collection of video material.

I just found an interesting one called Pueblo Heritage (1950) presented by the P. Lorillard Company, the manufacturer of Old Gold Cigarettes:
In gratitude to the people who gave tobacco to the world, the P. Lorillard Company presents this film, one in a series on the American Indian, as a public service.
Now I'll admit to enjoying the images of the Zuni and Acoma pottery, as well as the marvelous sterling silver jewelry. But the turquoise and silver covered wagon (at 07:08) containing Old Gold cigarettes is a serious Madison Avenue plug.

I was reminded of their advertisement in a 1951 Saturday Evening Post which I had written about here in an earlier post. The incredible tag line reads: No medical war whoops from Old Gold... We're tobacco men... not medicine men! Smoke OLD GOLD for a TREAT instead of a TREATMENT!

I even found a copy on Ebay going for $10.99.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Conflict of Interest Cross

This is from my sketchbook from late October, early November.

On November 23rd I noted a few lines from a book I found at the library on the $1 Shelf: Memories of My Melancholy Whores by Gabriel Garcia Marquez. I saw myself in the first one.
I discovered that my obsession for having each thing in the right place, each subject at the right time, each word in the right style, was not the well-deserved reward of an ordered mind but just the opposite: a complete system of pretense invented by me to hide the disorder of my nature.

This one I attributed to someone else:
I appear generous in order to conceal my meanness.

And then this one was me in spades!
I am conciliatory in order not to succumb to my repressed rage.

I checked into the exact meaning of "conciliatory" and read "bringing about harmony; propitiating." And when I checked into "propitiating" I read "gain favor by appeasement; atoning sacrifice."

Holy cow--the story of my life!!

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Disordered Interior Geometries

The photography of Francesca Woodman (1958-1981) is on display at San Francisco's Museum of Modern Art. I remember including some black and white images of her work in a simultaneous slide show titled "Symbolist Photography" that I produced in the late 80's for a Photo Archives course I was taking at Simmons GSLIS. I have not given much thought to her work since, until reading this morning's post at Cafe Selavy.

Her work is as engaging as her life was tragic. Some belittle her art ( John Henshall for the New Statesman -- this one is saddening right down to the comments ) while others have contributed in a more positive way to a meaningful understanding of it. Peter Davison, poetry editor for the Atlantic, suggests: "Francesca Woodman's work presents femaleness without satire or an agenda," in his insightful article Girl, Seeming to Disappear.

The Long Exposure of Francesca Woodman by Elizabeth Gumport on the New York Review of Books blog (which makes mention of Woodman's use of Surrealist motifs) was another good find, as were the selections of 21 images posted on this blog and 13 more on this tumblr. But what finally convinced me to write about Francesca Woodman today was the discovery, via Gumport's article, of the photographer's altered book, published in 1980, titled "Some Disordered Interior Geometries."

I didn't find a copy of the book on Amazon, nor was one available through any of the other used book sellers that I frequent. However, I discovered Alison Dunhill's article "Dialogues with Diagrams: Francesca Woodman's Book, Some Disordered Interior Geometries" for Rebus, an online journal of art history and theory (Issue 2, Autumn 2008, .pdf file here). It is illustrated with several two-page spreads in addition to an image of the altered cover of the Italian geometry text, Esercizi Graduati di Geometria, which forms the base for Woodman's photos and annotations. According to Dunhill, this was one of five photographic books that Woodman created using a found object in this manner.

Friday, December 2, 2011

New Worlds of Surrealism

I saw the advertisement in Art News this month for the show titled Surrealism: New Worlds at the Weinstein Gallery in San Francisco. It is running December 10, 2011 to January 28, 2012. I'm particularly fond of this fantastic collage painting by Victor Brauner.

The roster of artists also includes: William Baziotes, Alexander Calder, Leonora Carrington, Salvador Dali, Oscar Dominguez, Enrico Donati, Marcel Duchamp, Jimmy Ernst, Max Ernst, Leonor Fini, David Hare, Marcel Jean, Gerome Kamrowski, Andre Mason, Roberto Matta, Joan Miro, Gordon Onslow Ford, Wolfgang Paalen, Hurt Seligmann, Stella Snead, and Yves Tanguy.

I also like this one by Gerome Kamrowski.

Friday, November 4, 2011

Patti Smith: An Illuminated Apprentice

While compiling my fourth Play List on The Temporary Blog last night I re-discovered the music of Patti Smith. This seems fitting as I have recently read her book, Just Kids, which was recommended to me last spring by Mrs. Neutron.

Funny how you can come to appreciate things later in life that you blithley overlooked at a younger age. Check out this 1978 interview with Tom Snyder where Patti says: "I'm more materialistic about my soul than I am about objects."

Until the End of the World never made the list, but it should have.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Animation & Cool Photosets

I found a nice example of vintage animation via the blog Stickers and Stuff. Titled Magic Highway USA, it is amazing to see how creative the predictions were. The idea of a road surface that would melt snow and evaporate rain would be a great alternative to the frost heaves and snow banks that are in my immediate future!

I just added the photostream (found via Letterology) of Piet Schreuders to my Flickr list. Some amazing images there, including the one displayed at the top of this post.

There is nothing of note happening collage-wise as my entire existence has been swallowed up by The Roof, but I will leave you with these: Howlin' Wolf performing Dust My Broom at the 1966 Newport Jazz Festival, Walt Disney's Oscar winning history of music titled Toot Whistle, Plunk And Boom and an animation set to Cab Calloway's Saint James Infirmary.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Artists of the Month

My friend Sharon Lee and I have a show this month at the Gafney Library in Sanbornville, New Hampshire. We're having a reception to meet the artists on Thursday October 20th from 5:00 to 7:00 pm so stop in and say hello if you get a chance.

Art Group leader Peter Abate curated the show and did a fantastic job. I am always amazed to see my work hanging outside of my crowded little gallery. And it displays well with Sharon's work, which is frequently composed on a grid similar to mine.

More information on The Art Group blog.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

The Total Woman Show

Here I am with Cheryl Webb Scott and her wonderful crew on the set of The Total Woman show last week. You can see a bit of my collage titled "Do Not Adjust" in the background. I was interviewed about my collage art for a cable television segment and I'm looking forward to seeing the episode which I hope to share with you once I receive a copy on DVD.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

I Feel Like a Star

Yesterday my friend Sharon drove me to Stoneham, Massachusetts where I was interviewed about my collage work for a cable television show called The Total Woman Show. Everyone on the staff was so wonderful that I was not nervous one bit and the producer, Cheryl Webb Scott, made me feel perfectly at ease on camera!

I spoke with my friends Karen and Yola just prior to making the trip South and they both voiced the opinion that they sensed in me a new optimism. In thinking back this morning, I think they are right. Here are a couple of cross designs from my sketchbook that seem to foreshadow that.

From the back the second drawing has a slightly softer quality. Repeated I think it would make a nice scarf.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Blanche No. 4

I've been working on adding collages to my Tumblr site. It all started with putting some links on my latest blog, Future Dead Artist, which showcases my sketchbook drawings. I created a new banner for FDA, as well as little image links to Quilts, Crosses and Collages. I discovered that I only had a few of my collage images up so today I am working to remedy that situation.

My favorite has got to be the Blanch series. Pictured above is Blanche Becomes Alanis (Blanche No. 4) which was a small study done for Blanche Big or The Inspiration (Blanche No. 6) my largest collage to date at 30x39 inches.

I was listening to Alanis Morissette a lot at the time I made No. 4. (Also love this one.)

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

The Perfect Square

This one I call "The Perfect Square" because it is one of the few drawings where I made a pencil grid first. Little quilt below:

Monday, September 26, 2011

The Magic Carpet

Funny how I don't usually like some things right after I do them, but then later I do. Today's drawing is in that category.

Darkening the background in photoshop changes the feel of it. Reminds me of batik in a way. And here it is repeated, just because I can.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Fortune Teller Cross

I call this one my Fortune Teller Cross. The repeat pattern has some problems.

I like how the colors can be manipulated in photoshop. Out of all the different versions shown on the gray background, I think I like the one in the center the best.

I've Got A Secret

I'm going to confess that there is something that I have been holding back. I've been hesitating to go public with my secret, although I have let the cat out of the bag to a few of you who have visited Anita's Beads this month.

I'm going to be interviewed about my collage work on television.

The interview will be broadcast on a cable TV show out of Massachusetts called The Total Woman Show. It will be shown in some 50 communities, and my web address (this address, the address of this blog) will appear on the screen throughout the interview. How cool is that!

A 30 minute segment will be taped during the first week in October. It's coming up fast. I think I'm getting nervous.

Friday, September 23, 2011

Happy Cross

It pays to de-clutter once and a while. I found this along with a few others that I will post by and by. What a happy find from back in June when my old computer died. The photoshop version on dark gray looks like a chalk drawing.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Today's Crosss

Too nice out today to spend much time at the computer. The weather is perfect to celebrate the first day of fall. I have spent most of the day trying to de-clutter my collage work area. I recently had a huge stuffed chair removed from the room so the chi is really moving. Tonight I will sit on the porch and smudge, as I found a box of my favorite incense herbs. I used to love making incense.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Thoughts of You on Gray

This is from a sketchbook page dated July something, cropped and given the Photoshop treatment.

I liked this next one on just black the best until I tried it on gray.

When I went over to my Tumblr site to post it I encountered this marvelous quotation. My goal is to bear it in mind all day!
Statistically, the probability of any one of us being here is so small that the mere fact of our existence should keep us all in a state of contented dazzlement. ( - Lewis Thomas)
(So dazzled that I can't even spell.)

Monday, September 19, 2011

Be Yourself Trivia

I noticed that Joseph Cornell and I had the same Little Golden science book. Note the vertical array of colored dots on the rectangle of black in my collage titled Be Yourself shown above. Look to the left of Mrs. Gardner. The colors change from orange at the top to blue at the bottom.

OK, now advance to 4:43 on this Joseph Cornell slide show on YouTube. (I mentioned it once before two posts ago.) In the bottom left Cornell has used the same array of dots in the same order, orange at the top to blue at the bottom.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Skip Battaglia and Norman Juster

Having a YouTube kind of day! I just watched this great short film called Parataxis made by Skip Battaglia in 1980.
Am I the Story I tell myself? Consciousness begins with the first lie. My memory is redundant so that I might begin to exist. I could tell you but this would tell you nothing.
And I found my all-time favorite by Norman Juster, The Dot And The Line: A Romance in Lower Mathematics. I've posted about the book before here. According to Wikipedia, Juster's story was inspired by the 1884 satirical novella Flatland: A Romance of Many Dimensions by Edwin Abbott Abbott (writing pseudonymously as "A Square") who offered pointed observations on the social hierarchy of the Victorians.

Flatland inspired me as well. See this post for a collage example!

Larry Jordan & Joseph Cornell

I was very excited when I discovered the animation of Larry Jordan three years ago. Today I noticed a number of his pieces on YouTube including Gymnopedies (1965, with an enigmatic score by Eric Satie) and Hamfat Asar (1965).

And here's another great find, Carousel-Animal Opera filmed by Joseph Cornell in the 1930's and later completed by Larry Jordan in the 1970's.

And speaking of Joseph Cornell, here's a nice slide show of his work, including some altered books which I have never seen before. And here's his strange upside-down, reversed and negative image world of By Night With Torch and Spear with a marvelously haunting sound track!

Here's an interesting bit that I learned on the YouTube site. Made by splicing together stock footage that Cornell had found and collected, the film premiered at the first Surrealist exhibition in New York 1936. Salvador DalĂ­, present at its first screening, was outraged, claiming he had just had the same idea of applying collage to film. He remarked that Cornell should stick to making boxes and stop making films. Traumatized, Cornell rarely showed his films there after.

Larry Jordan was one of a number of young assistants that Cornell hired to help organize his collections. I wonder if the blue predominating in Gymnopedies is a nod to Cornell's Rose Hobart (1936) which was projected through a sheet of blue glass.

And I can't close without mentioning this superb example of bizarre collage animation dating from 1959: Stan Vanderbeek's Science Friction! There's a bit with a television in there that must have inspired Joanna Priestley.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Blowing Things Up & Shooting Stuff

I discovered a great archive of the Du Pont Company periodicals via Things Magazine. There is much to read in the full text of 640 issues dating from the period 1913 to 2003. I'm going to enjoy exploring the Hagley Digital Archives in its entirety! I've added the link to my sidebar list of Reference Links.

Below is some of my favorite Du Pont cover art.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Dorje Drawing

Here's a drawing I did in my sketch diary last night of my latest collage titled Dorje (Theme No. 3). I hear it calling to me to repeat pattern it in Photoshop.

Dorje 2 Quilt

Here's a Photoshop manipulation of a sketch book drawing that I posted recently on Future Dead Artists. Do I have too many blogs? Is there a 12-step program for this?

Wouldn't these be cool as scarves?