once again i’ll em bark on the turtle life. pack up all my stuff into my little house on my back and roll on to the next stop. my next destination is gainesville, florida where i’ll be enrolled in the post-baccalaureate program at UF.
it has been a very interesting, challenging and often amazing 6 months in the city of brotherly love. i am always lucky to meet friends wherever i go and in this short amount of time i’m delighted to have met and connected with so many awesome people, my roommate and neighbors in west philly, inspiring artists and teachers of the philadelphia art scene and my friends and coworkers at pp.
every step you take in one direction means not taking other steps in other directions and i always kind of struggle with that. i want to do everything! but i feel confident that as i bumble along, on my own path, i’ll figure out the right way to go. this crazy turtle life has taken my a lot of places and on many adventures. i guess this is the most wild adventure of all. bringing it all together and making dreams come true.
today i spent the day helping install a show at a gallery in old city. it was great to spend the day with 3 such well established, interesting and very amicable artists. i find it very important and inspiring to be around people you respect, especially really amazing women. i wish i would have thought to take a picture or two of installation but anyway, if you’re in the area, definitely check out the show at the rosenfeld gallery.
ok, so no more snow days. actually the weird thing is that there has been a lot more snowing at times when i’m out and about but it’s not sticking so not causing such a problem with the transit. there were a couple of days where i was getting poked in the eyes with snowflakes as i walked around. so odd for a floridian like me.
i was in tokyo for almost a year before the first snow and i don’t remember it ever really snowing like this. there were FOR SURE never piles of snow on the ground for weeks on end. i feel like a little kid, scraping snow off cars to make snowballs and pulling out my camera at all kinds of banal sights.
the snow on the trees reminds me of the cherry blossoms in tokyo, sometimes they were white instead of pink and the light color of the blossom made the tree bark look like charcoal, which was especially beautiful. i have only been here in winter so maybe these trees will end up being cherry blossom trees in the spring? that would be sweet.
and up close the black and white of the bark and ice make a nice pattern:
i’m also really interested in the icicles. i don’t always remember to look up and see them but the other day on the way out see an exhibition at the crane arts building i spotted these bumpy, melty looking icicles.
the above picture is of some tiny sculptures i call the saskunei seeds. saskunei means “no worries” in the fukushima dialect of japanese. in late 2007 i attended a sweet kiln workshop in mashiko, japan. it was my first time to fire woodkilns and we fired 4 kilns in 4 days. one of those kilns was the saskunei smokeless kiln built by kusakabe masakazu. months later i would get to visit him at his studio in fukushima, two times and spend a couple of weeks there total. while i was visiting his studio, i made the sculptures above. pretty soon after that i returned to the united states for good. on the way back i had a layover in atlanta, which i extended so i could visit my good friend and potter kelly sullivan. she works over at an awesome studio/gallery mudfire and during the visit, i got to do some work there. i made some monster sculptures and more of these little seeds, which she fired and glazed after i headed back to florida. over one year later, on a trip up to bowling green, ohio, a friend and i stop in on her and after all this time i get to see the finished peices. when i returned to my studio in st. pete, i decided to make a some more of these little guys, as favors for the folks who purchased work from my exhibition. i’ve given a lot of them out as little gifts, but kept at least a few from each batch, and i’ll keep making them.
which brings me to the next stop on this train line, philadelphia, pa. i’ve “graduated” from my residency in st. pete and in january i’ll be moving up to philly. i started this blog to write about the good times, struggles and process of the clay life and hopefully the next year will bring more to write about.