Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Found Art Tuesday: 2-19-08 "History Repeats"

NIU- History has repeated itself once again in a terrible, terrible tragedy. My inner self was screaming as I watched the video clips of the shootings unfold. How could this happen yet again? Why don't we learn from the past? And then I thought, well why should we? Attrocities such as NIU have been happeneing since the Old Stone Age. Are we just naturally programmed to hate one kill and maim in the name of God or in the name of $$$$. Just take a brief walk through time...What are the History books filled with? The Reconquista, King Philips War, The Holocost, Croatia, suicide bombers, more ethnic killings, Slave trade you name it... I am so sad and depressed. What are we? What drives the human race? I am overwhelmed and feel so helpless.

My piece is called: "History repeats." I did this out of anger and great sadness. MIxed media and Collage is the category of this work and I used a rather light weight piece of water color paper as the substrate. I am almost afraid to leave it because I would not get the chance to explain it. But I will never-the-less. Maybe it is better for the finder to feel my raw emotion. These killings are insurmountable...Even Freud can't explain them. Are we doomed to repeat the acts again? Our children are acting out these violent crimes...What are we teaching them?

PS. This took some time to post because we have all had turns with cold/flu like things. I just finished the piece today (3/1).

Friday, February 08, 2008

Found Art Tuesday: Simple 2-5-08

A little late is better than never. You can quote me on that! So with this little work, I tried to kill 3 birds with one stone. I belong to a mixed media group,, that is currently doing some of the techniques/excercises from "Celebrate Your Creative Self " by Mary Todd Beam. I love this format of doing an excercise every month because it forces me to revisit many of the techniques I may have done long ago. It also allows me or perhaps gives me permission to make big mistakes. The assignment for February was two basic techniques: lifting, and wax resist.

The found art theme this past week: Simple. So I set out to do two techniques using the theme simple. I should have known from the start it would be anything but simple! Look at these colors...I seem to always choose this warm pallette. Anyway. In Mary Todd Beam's excercise, she has us using watercolors. OK so I currently prefer acrylics. When lifting, you have to move quickly for obvious reasons. Acrylics dry so fast. Illustration board was my support. Diacrylide yellow and yellow ochre were laid down first and lifted, I tried lifting with a foam brush and discovered that I did not like the foam brush at all so I used paper towels which is what I would normally use to lift paints. Then I laid down two collage elements. The skull was a third try transfer. I tried twice before and the transfer just was not working on this illustration board. I think that maybe it was too wet? I do transfers often and this was the first time in a long while that I could not get one to work. The wax resist technique is more subtle. I did not use the technique as a focal point but rather as a way to protect some of my elements before I painted over them with more colors. I used neutral shoe polish and some white crayon. Then I washed over the work with quincridone crimson, burnt umber light. Next I added the final collage element, shoe polish, and another couple layers of burnt umber light. The last wash was an irridescent bronze. Last but not least, I added some writing using Roas'a little find...the Kemper tool..

Although this is rather winded, I wanted to write this up for the mixed media group who are currently doing this excercise. As far as the found art theme...the work really is not very complex. If the transfer had worked the first time, it would have been "simple." So I included some writing that says "there is no simpler road". So there you have it.