Thursday, October 21, 2010

The Day Arrives

I have completely lucked out with having clear weather every day I've been out at the Garden with a scheduled event. The opening last Sunday was no exception. It was a great day to see friends, project helpers and new garden goers as they interacted with the installed pieces. All three pieces are up and will be in the garden for at least the next month. Stop by and see them in the rose garden, bee garden and at the visitor center! A big thanks to the helpers and to Queens Botanical Garden for hosting the project!

Here are a few photos from the day:


I think making her hat was my favorite part of the project!

The bee keeper at the reception table before being installed

Susan Springer Anderson speaking with QBG Executive Director, Susan Lacerte

Friday, October 15, 2010

Opening of Exhibition and Artist Reception

Don't forget to come out to the Queens Botanical Garden this Sunday, October 17 from 3-5pm to see the finished sculptures, rain or shine. Refreshments will be served and we hope to be playing the short documentary about the project " the making" during the reception. Prints of the pieces will be on sale in the shop.

Here are a few shots of finished pieces to entice you to come!

Also, check out the article from Lisa Fraser in the Queens Chronicle about the project!

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Last Community Work Day

Last night wrapped up the end of the community participation in the making of the sculptures. I had about twelve people stop at the tables and work with me for awhile. A few women earned the title of worker bees, making at least 6 patches each. Thanks for your help ladies! 

I'll be finishing up this piece and the last sculpture over the next week. Then they will be installed in the garden for about one month. Don't forget, the exhibit opening is on Sunday, October 17 from 3-5 pm at the Garden. Make sure to come by!

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Sharing Opportunities to Create

Saturday was a great day to be at the garden. The morning was pretty chilly, so much so that by lunch my fingers were numb! But by the afternoon the sun warmed things up and made for a beautiful day.

 Although the weather was a delight the high points of the day were sharing the opportunity to create with a diverse crowd. In the morning two mom's stopped by and worked on patches for close to an hour. We had a lovely conversation and it turns out that one of the women had studied to be a scenic designer years ago, but went in a different direction career wise, and hasn't had much time since to spend creating and working with her hands. Then in the afternoon a daughter and her elderly mother came to the table to work for a bit. The daughter mentioned that her mom grew up in China and was from a generation that didn't participate in art-making. She said her mom was going to be talking about this opportunity and remembering it for a long time. Plus, today, Sunday is her 89th birthday- congratulations! It's those kinds of moments that make the long hours of preparation 100% worth it.

This Wednesday, October 6 from 3-5pm is my last community workshop. Come on out if you haven't already done so. And, just a reminder, Sunday October 17 from 3-5pm is the opening reception.

The second piece. She'll be sitting on this bench for the installation.

The dress is made from fir branches; another tree that was damaged in the recent storm.

Fox tail (the plant)  is added to the jacket to make it a faux fur coat.

A mom and daughter come by. Today, 10/3/10 is the mom's 89th birthday!

Saturday, October 2, 2010

1 Done, 2 to Go

After a few solo hours at the garden I finished the first piece. The theme ended up changing along the way due to the materials available. What was first to be a Han dynasty inspired garment ended up closer to an Emilie Floge, Schwestern Floge, dress. You'll notice I also took the grass off the sleeves. It just wasn't working.

The final materials were willow branches and amaranth.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Day 2 at the Garden

We had a great day at the Garden on Sunday. Comfortable temperatures and clear skies made it good day to be outside. Here are a few shots from the day... more to come later.

Monday, September 20, 2010

QBG Project, Workshop 1

It was a beautiful day to be outside- a definite contrast to two days prior when a tornado ripped through Queens and left a great deal of destruction. The Botanical Garden took a beating that left 20 large trees strewn about the grounds with gaping holes from the trees that were uprooted. The wedding garden was a mess. A beautiful, large weeping willow was felled by the storm and the branches and parts of the trunk were all over the placed. Thus the wedding that was scheduled there for Saturday got moved to the terrace... right where my workshop was set up. Needless to say folks were intimidated to get too close lest they disturb the wedding and in turn left me with a lack of attendees. We're switching up some details for next weekend's workshop which should help with getting folks participating. Oh well, at least I got some good work in. Below are some shots from the day.

On the 7 train heading to the garden. I had more people talk to me on the train than I did at the garden!
Gathering materials from the compost pile.
Hauling branches from the wedding garden. I figured I might as well try and turn the destruction into something positive by using the debris for the project.

Stripping the leaves off the branches. The leaves get too brittle once they are dry to use for the sculpture.
The gathered materials.

Amaranth, prepped and ready to be added.

Attaching prairie grass to the sleeves. The bulk of the garment will be made from grass and willow branches. The amaranth will be added on the borders.

You can see the wedding going on behind me.

A good start.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Standing Room Only

The body is done, but she looks a little bare. Luckily my community workshops start this Saturday, September 18 at the Queens Botanical Garden and we will get her all decked out. This first piece will be wearing a garment based on a Chinese Han Dynasty design. A sketch of the design in the proposed location is below. Stop by from 1:00-4:00pm to help out.

The link below will take you to the  QBG website with more information on the workshops.

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Look Ma! No Hands!

The pieces for my Queens Botanical Garden project are coming along. I will definitely have 3 full body pieces ready for the community workshops and I'm considering doing a fourth. After the frames are complete I will begin working on the base layer of the dresses for each form. I will be creating a different styled garment for each piece out of window screen. Then, the visitors to the garden will be able to make their own patch to add to the dress. Ready or not my first open studio time at the Garden is Saturday, September 18th. More details to come.

At this moment I know there will be two standing pieces and one sitting.

The studio- in good shape

Sunday, April 18, 2010

It's Done!

I've been working my fingers to the bone- more literally into needle jams and wire knots, trying to get this last piece finished in time to send it out for a competition. Today WAS the deadline, until I checked the website today and found that they had extended the deadline. Which means, I could have had at least 10 extra hours of sleep last week, one movie fun night and one slouch around the house night! Alas, it's finished and I'm glad. Now.... onto the next piece?
The finished dress (minus a zipper) brought to you by Spic and Span reusable cleaning cloths with a fresh lemon clean scent guaranteed to make you remember zebra stripe gum!

"A Good Clean Education"

The subject of this piece dons a frock of reusable Spic and Span cleaning cloths featuring a clean lemon scent. She has been practicing being a good student but has been caught in the act of writing her own thoughts and is vigorously attempting to wipe them away.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

A spot of spring

This is the first patch of tulips I've seen in Jackson Heights and it's right outside our front door! Spring has been much anticipated this year as winter seemed to last longer than normal in so many ways.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Dr. Frankenstein and the Lab Assistants

As I've been working on creating the full body armature I've ended up with individual body parts scattered around the studio. As each member gets added I've had multiple flashbacks to seventh grade reading Mary Shelley's Frankenstein. Granted I haven't been collecting body parts from scandalous sources but I have been mending them together creating a brand new creature. I feel like the piece needs a nickname as she's being brought to life... any suggestions?

It's been awhile since I've shown some progress shots of the work. I just finished the entire body today and now all that's left is to create the dress for this piece. It's going to made from Spic n' Span reusable cleaning cloths in a lovely shade of lemon yellow and white polka dot like flowers. Stay tuned for the completed piece on the docket to be finished by THURSDAY! No kidding.

Head and Shoulders, knees- not yet, knees-not yet

Monday at 11am. My eyes were starting to get a bit buggy staring at the wire grid.

Progress! One arm on, one to go.

There she be, full body!

Catching up on some reading.

The Chief Lab assistant doing a final inspection.

The Chief lecturing the subordinate on the importance of craft.