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September 02, 2011

I thought I loved my staple gun until I met my table saw.

It's true. I'm a little over the initial infatuation phase and I know eventually I'll take him for granted, but right now it's the real thing. I am cranking out my own bevel cut stretchers like a pro. The three components of being an artist I gripe about the most are the prep phase of obtaining stretchers and panels, and the shipping and packing finished artwork, and the office work part. Like most artists, I just want to make the work. I don't have an assistant. I have thought about hiring one when I get really busy, and have had a couple of offers in the past, but have justified that it's not THAT much additional time to do these things. It is of course, but I digress. Plus, my studio's never been that conducive to having a second person work with me. I move around a lot. I stumble over the dog sometimes. But my point being is that suddenly building stretchers is fun- enough. Not like OMG exhilarating super fun, but the dread is gone. Office work will never be fun. Theoretically, shipping and packing could be more fun now that I can build my own crates. Again, not like OMG exhilarating super fun, but the dread is gone kind of fun.

I'm about a month and a half out from my residency show. Normally I do not like to work up until the last minute before a show. I like breathing room to think about the work and study it while taking a step back. I don't want to understand the work while I'm making it. This show's a bit odd because it's in the residency gallery space, so although it's a solo show, it's more like a... actually I don't know what it's more like. I've never been in a show where the space is so linear, and it's been a while a few years since I haven't been thinking in terms of a solo show a year ahead of time. During the residency, I've been thinking in terms of showing up to the studio and painting, which is what I'm still doing and I suppose this is how I work. It's not random by any means, but the work has evolved organically in a non-linear way. During their making I wasn't bothering to force them into some overarching theme, though of course an overarching theme is evident. They fall into categories, so there is underlying logic at work. I was asked if I needed more time. I think they're worried that since my work is small I need to make more in order to fill the space, but that's not my MO. If it were, I'd probably need another year or two to let the work multiply and group itself accordingly. In normal world, I should have enough work for two solo shows. In train car world, it might look like crazytown. So be it. When I look at all the work from the past year, it looks like a good start to a retrospective. I was thinking of titling the show "Introspective" using a mod 70's font as a play on the concept of retrospective, but it reminded me of one of those jokes that no one gets. I'm either ahead or really behind the curve right now. Or off the curve completely. That's possible, too.