Friday, May 24, 2013

Field trip to Sante Fe, part two

Saturday morning, we decided to go to Canyon Road. We did a quick stop at the farmer's market first. It had a lot of produce, and across the street there was a small area with artists.  We couldn't really buy any produce while on vacation, so I am not sure I would consider it a tourist destination.  Instead of eating breakfast at the hotel though, we should have gotten a pastry or something here. They looked delicious.

We took our hotel shuttle over to Canyon Road. We went into a lot of galleries and I thought it was great. They definitely have a very high caliber of art here.

I really like Geoffrey Gorman's work. He makes these animals out of cloth and wire and hardware. This one was on exhibit in a display in the La Fonda hotel, but he had works in a gallery on Canyon Road as well.

For lunch we went to The Compound. 
Allen got the soft crab sandwich. I got the scallops with crispy pork belly and a rhubarb glaze. It came with polenta "croutons", which were large polenta squares and not hard like a crouton. The whole thing was delicious. I think it is the best pork belly and best polenta I've ever had. They kind of overwhelmed the scallops, but it was all wonderful.

We wandered down Canyon Road some more after lunch. Later in the day we went to the Marble Brewery Tap room for pizza and beer on their upstairs patio that overlooks the square. I was disappointed that they only had beer (no wine, no margaritas) but it is a brewery after all.  After dinner, we walked to the top of the hill at Marcey's Fort. I was hoping for a good sunset, but it was an hour from sunset and the clouds were rolling in.

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Field trip to Sante Fe, part one

This past weekend, my husband and I went to Sante Fe for a long weekend. It's about a 6 hour drive from Denver.  It was a lot of fun. I liked the "high desert" feel and we saw a lot of art. It doesn't have much going on in the evenings. Most stores are closed by 6 and restaurants by 10. Not that we are late night party people, but there wasn't much to do after dinner.

Sante Fe does have some cute shops.  We went to Guadalupe's Fun Rubber Stamps on Don Gasper, as well as Doodlet's right next door. I didn't need any stamps, but Guadalupe's had some special paper to apply pictures to mica, which I wanted to try. Doodlet's is kind of a card/gift shop, but had some unique things. It was fun to poke around. I also liked Sante Fe Weaving Gallery, around the corner, at 124-1/2 Galisteo Street. There were some woven jackets, but many things were not woven. They had some lovely fiber necklaces and nuno felted jackets.

 We ate breakfast at Pasqual's cafe on Don Gasper. I had their huevos motulenos, which has feta, peas, and sauteed bananas with eggs over easy (long with green chili and other stuff). It was really good. 

We went to the Georgia O'Keefe museum. It was smaller than I thought it would be, and seemed to have the same or similar pieces as the Georgia O'Keefe show that was just in Denver.

We also went to the International Folk Art Museum which is a couple miles out of town. I really was not impressed at all and I think it was due to the way the items are displayed. They are all crowded together behind glass and reminded me of smaller (and much older) museums that just throw it all out there without any rhyme or reason. I would have liked it to either been organized by continent or region, or just show a lot less pieces so I could focus on the beauty of 1,000 objects, instead of being overwhelmed by 130,000 with none being displayed more prominently than the next. Maybe kids would like it?  

We went to La Boca for dinner. It is a tapas restaurant. We shared quite a few small plates, but the pork special was the best! After dinner we went to the Fine Arts Museum, as they are open until 8 on Friday nights and evening entry is free. The art downstairs was nice but nothing really grabbed me. They had an interesting video artist, Peter Sarkisian (link), upstairs which was quite interesting.

More Citrasolv papers

Last week I ended up doing two more sessions of making Citrasolv papers with National Geographic magazines.

Here are some additional pictures. I really like the ones where I used stencils or bubble wrap. Doing this technique outside was way easier as I could just spread the papers out in the yard. They do like to blow around a bit, but my yard is fenced so I wasn't worried about losing any of them.

Typical result.

With leaf stencil tucked in.

 Large bubble wrap tucked in

Flower stencil. This stencil had gold on it (Pearlescent brand ink?) from a previous project. The ink transferred to the magazine page.  This looks awesome. This stencil also had some green acrylic paint on it. It bubbled up on the stencil, but did not transfer. I tried to re-create this look by spraying tattered angels spray on my stencil and tucking it in, which worked okay, but not as good as this one.

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Citrasolv on National Geographic to make abstract papers

Yesterday I went to Susan and Sabyl's studio, and Sabyl and I played with Citrasolv on National Geographic.

Here is our table setup. You need something to protect your tabletop.  Sabyl had these nice plastic trays for us to work in as well, which worked great. We used foam brushes to apply the Citrasolv, but paper towels, or even just sprinkling it on would work. Make sure to use the concentrated Citrasolv (usually a screw top) and not the ready to use type (typically a spray top).  I put a lot of Citrasolv on mine, but it's a individual thing. We had stencils and bubble wrap that we stuck in the pages to make patterns. We also tried wrinkled plastic wrap but neither of us liked how those turned out.
The pages towards the front and the back of the magazine are ads that do not work with the Citrasolv. Some people just tear these out, but we found the magazine kind of falls apart and we would recommend leaving them on, so the pages stay in place a bit better while you are working. We just didn't bother putting Citrasolv on these pages, as they aren't going to be affected.  It is best to do this whole process outside or in a well ventilated room since the Citrasolv has an overpowering orange smell.
We put the Citrasolv in a metal (washed) tin since the Citrasolv dissolves some plastics (like the red plastic party cups). Since it does eat through some plastics, it could affect the plastic stencils as well. It seemed my newer ones were fine, but I had a really old one of thicker plastic, and it got a bit textured from the Citrasolv.

A lot of the pages have a lot of black ink so the final results will be very dark on some. If there were two pages facing each other that just had text, I would skip those as the photo pages made more interesting papers.

After applying the Citrasolv to all of the pages, we started from the front and went page by page. If we liked the page as is, we tore it out to dry. If it still needed more time, we left it in and went to the next page. The page that was skipped looked totally different the next time we looked at it. The more times we opened and closed two pages, the more muddy and mottled it became.
 Here are Sabyl's pages (Yes that is my finger at the bottom. whoops!).
Here are my pages. I used a magazine with lots of articles about fish and the ocean so I got a lot of blue papers. I got 48 papers out of one magazine. We ended up using almost all the floor space to dry papers. We used newspaper and kraft paper to dry these on. They do drip blackish Citrasolv, so the floor needed to be protected. The newsprint did not transfer to the Citrasolv papers and didn't really affect the back side of the paper so both sides were still usable.
 Here is what a lot of the papers will look like, kind of dark with bubble shapes.
 This one had a swirly stencil tucked in.
Here the Citrasolv only partially dissolved the ink so part of the original photo is still visible. I have a cool one where you can see a lady's clasped hands but the rest of her was mottled.
 Here is a plastic doily used over a close-up picture of a fish (the blue parts are his eyes).

I plan to do another magazine outside today on a piece of cardboard and just spread the pages on the grass. Not that I need another 48 pages, but it is so fun and easy.

Core Gallery - WOW show

The Core New Art Space currently has their WOW (Wide Open Whatever) show on exhibit. This is their biggest show of the year where they take as many entries as they can. We went to the opening on Friday. It was a good crowd and many of my friends were there so it was a fun night.

I have three pieces in the show.

This piece, "Shoot!" took Honorable Mention. It used rifle targets, cowboy viewmaster slides and covers, toy railroad tracks, chains, and toy guns.
 "A bug flew in my head"
 "Unchain my Heart"
 Susan, Sabyl, and Liz came to the show.
 Melanie said she was having a bad hair day.
 Here was the gallery towards the end of the night. My guess is there are at least 100 works on display.

It is an interesting show as they like to include the unusual. Please stop by if you get a chance. They are on 9th Ave, just off of Sante Fe Blvd. The show runs until May 26th.

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Paris Flea Market

Ah, the first Saturday of May. It was a glorious thing and the start of the Paris Flea Market at Aspen Grove. I have been waiting anxiously. Usually the first one is somewhat disappointing as they typically don't have as many vendors as they do later in summer.  Boy, this year that was not the case! Lots of vendors, and lots of customers! Finding a parking place was a real challenge.

Last year I was on a suitcase hunt as I was turning vintage suitcases into tables, and the ones at this market were always super pricey. This year (when I already have a stash and don't need anymore) they were all over the place for around $25-$35, which in my mind, is somewhat reasonable. Luckily I did not find one that I couldn't live without!

So what did I find this month? A trio of plastic birds for $8 for the set. An X and O for $6 each, which was a little more than I would have liked to pay but I do have specific projects for them.  I bought another coal shovel because the price was right, $5.  I need to work on making art with my shovel collection as I am now up to 6 or 7 of them.  The rusty straight piece I found in a different shopping mall parking lot later in the day.  Some people like shiny bits, I like rusty bits!  (Okay, I like shiny bits too!)

And the big score of the day, a free glass shelf niche thing.  It had a break in the glass on the side, and it was under the vendors table. I asked if it was sold, and she said it was falling apart and too fragile for her booth and I could have it for free. Sold, for the price of zero! What to do with it is another thing entirely. I would like to use the curved pieces at the top, and also use the back and shelf for something, which means I need to rip out all the glass parts. I am concerned the solder may have lead in it, as I could probably use my soldering iron to disassemble it.

And yesterday I found this lovely target for 70 cents at the thrift store. I love a bargain and think this is fabulous! I have an idea for it too.
All in all a good weekend of doo-dad shopping!

Monday, May 6, 2013

Hands and Hearts assemblage

I've spent the last week working on an assemblage using the resin hearts that I posted here.  I had a bunch of mannequin hands that I had bought on Craigslist a while back and wanted them on the sides of the box.

The box that I used was a cigar box, it is quite large, roughly 27" x 10". I had bought it at a thrift store and it needed some TLC. I cleaned it with water, and used a touch-up pen to touch up the wood.  I did two separate coats of Wax 'n' Feed since the wood looked really dry.  I took out the lock hardware since I didn't have the key.  I took out the plexiglass in the door as it had the cigar company's name etched in it.

The hands have three holes in them for attachment, so I made a template of the hole pattern and transferred it onto paper that I had attached to the box. I drilled the holes and attached the hands with screws.

Then I added separate side panels on the interior of the box. On the right side, to cover the screw heads. On the left side, to cover a separate channel area in the box. I applied toner copies of text that says "He loves me. He loves me not." over and over in small type. I did a thin wash of white paint over this to soften the text. I attached 1-1/2" wood blocks to the back of the box with screws, then screwed the hearts into the block. They have a nice floating quality to them. I cut and hot glued a new plexiglass piece for the door. I actually put LED lights in the box around the edge. It is a very white light and makes the piece look stark. I was hoping the red resin would reflect red off of the lights, but that did not happen.

I made this piece for a show that was due yesterday, but I feel that something is missing, so submitted another piece instead.  I am going to work on some other things and think about what this piece needs. Any ideas? Maybe chains, as I love them and have a bunch. Maybe handwrite some text?  Maybe a pile of broken red glass at the bottom of the box? Maybe add something to the top of the box?

I am going to work on some smaller pieces this week and will post those later in the week.