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February 09, 2016

Cicadas.

Periodically I reflect on the lackluster name of this blog, Process, and wonder if the title is still accurate. Some days I wish I had been a little more witty in my titling, maybe addressing some kind of word play with a specific nod to philosophical influences or something a little more obviously Zen, but having passed our 10-year anniversary rather quietly last fall, I’m happy to report Process is still on the mark. 

I’ve privately archived posts the majority of posts from 2005-2008. I left an art review and an essay about John Baldessari for old time’s sake. 

State of the Union. 
It’s 2016. Near, mid-February to be non-exact. The show at Marcia Wood Gallery comes down this week. Three reviews, all good. The Atlanta crowd was gracious.

I’ve been in Nashville past my expiration date, as noted by the recent letter I have received from the DMV. I have the option to have a new picture taken in which I will appear 5 years older, or to keep the last picture where I look like Aileeen Wuornos. I must have been wearing a scoop neck top at the time, because I look like I could be naked, only Aileeen Wuornos naked. It's not a look that works on me. 

The studio and the concept thereof, have shifted in the last year or two. Nothing to cause alarm. I am a periodic cicada. I produce work in prolific cycles. By accepting this, I've experienced a great freedom. As I write this, I’m building stretchers and have the beginnings of my next solo conceptualized and gestating in the room I call the paint studio. The idea came while driving one of the two loaner cars I had while my car was being repaired due to rodent damage. In other areas of my home/studio, I’m working on a Repair Project involving textiles and labor, and in the office/edit suite I am playing around with “new casualist" video art, (to co-op a phrase from Sharon Butler).

But that’s not all, gentle reader. Once I let myself leave the cult of painting, even more flow happened. I’ve been interviewing female artists and those in the arts for a series of micro-documentaries I’m producingand writing, the thing I have the most trouble defining, figures in all this work prominently, if only for the sake of language. I’m voraciously reading like it’s  1988/89/90.

I wrote a ton of poetry in 1988/89/90, which in my mind, is one long year. There is a valid explanation. As a day job, I waited tables on a train car and travelled. I took poetry classes at the University of Chicago Graham School, and I broke my leg and wore a cast up to my pelvis for almost a year. Actually, the cast went through 3 phases becoming shorter with each cast. The actual casting sitch was about 6 months with crutches and and your basic gimpness lasting for the remainder of the year. I’m not sure if the above order is even correct. It was a long year and lot happened. Merlot and caffeine were involved. Chicago. 

Like everyone just discovering themselves, I got hooked on the Beat generation. After doing a few poetry readings, my poetry teacher invited me over to her place in Hyde Park for tea. She told me I should be submitting my work to publications like the Paris Review. I never did. I don’t know why. Most of my poems were about food. My day job was as a waitress. Later, a flood came along and I saw my writing folder floating in the basement. There was a red millipede or two. I let it all go. Only one poem survived and in the interim I had chronicled the better parts of my first marriage in a zine. My ex asked me not to write about him after the divorce. Or maybe I was afraid writing would beat painting, like paper trumps rock. When you’re in a cult, you get like that. Everyone is competing for your attention and in some weird way you champion the underdog until it’s no longer the underdog and you let it work itself out. The same happened with abstraction and representation, painting and video, video and writing, writing and painting. Cicadas, all of it.

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Feb 9, 2016
What I do when I should be looking for work*
Nashville

* more on this later

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