It’s been a couple of months since I’ve written anything. I suppose I have been busy. Here’s what’s happened in the last two months.
I finished my residency at The Wassaic Project. I spent the final weeks working as the education fellow with two groups of local Wassaic kids: art club (comprised of middle school students) and the Webutuck high school kids. The final weeks of October I was busy packing, teaching and preparing to move. Oh, and I built a haunted maze in Maxon Mill with my new friend Giada for Halloween.
On Saturday October 26th, I set out for my residency at the Vermont Studio Center (VSC). I had to miss Wassaic’s Halloween celebration because I was traveling by train to Johnson, Vermont. I had a lot of trouble leaving the place I had called home for the past four months and arrived at VSC feeling a little lost and disappointed. But there was no time to waste. Only a week or two before my travel date, I was contacted by NLE Curitorial Lab requesting a site-specific piece for their show, Through the Parlor. Only days after arriving at VSC I was pulling all-nighters in the studio trying to get my piece, Flight, completed and shipped to Manhattan.
Once I completed that assignment I felt truly lost. I don’t know what it is about the completion of a major project or show, I typically come away feeling bankrupt. I was broke with pennies left in my bank account and I had no true sense of place. I was seriously on edge. What did I hope to accomplish with all this traveling around? And who were all these new people that I was meeting? How did they fit into my life and my current state of being?
I was overwhelmed and experiencing sensory overload. I was also desperate to solve the major financial problem I was experiencing. I had been counting on grant money and winning the people’s choice award in Hilton Head, neither of which came through. Being as broke as I was made me feel like a total failure and a bum, with nothing to offer. I was exhausted after traveling and working on Flight, both of which always make me feel emotionally bankrupt and so I resulted to hiding in my beautiful studio space (probably the most beautiful studio I have had to date) researching, writing and making a little art here and there. I ended up building an installation in my studio which I referred to as “Leftovers” because that’s what it was made out of: all the leftover materials from the previous installations.
Looking back, I wish I could have pulled myself out of my funk. The people at VCS were amazing. Traditionally when I encounter my black moods I hide myself away – no one needs to be around that – because I feel incapable of relating. Fortunately I made some good connections, hopefully people who were able to see past my crumudgendry.
And now I’m here. Here is my parent’s condo in Kennesaw, GA. I have $20 in my account (more than what I had in Vermont) and I’m working on a series of paintings for the Roy G Biv show in February. I’m also resting and working towards feeling like a normal person again. I have been recently published in Hi-Fructose and the Huffington Post; I suppose I’m feeling accomplished. I have more residencies coming up: one in France in March 2014 and then on to Brescia, Italy to help my friend Giada start her residency in Northern Italy. I have also been recently accepted to Lugar A Dudas, a residency in Columbia. But how to pay for all of this? As usual, I am searching high and low for more grant money in the hopes that I can scrape enough together to get me there and back again. And doing my damndest to remain positive (focus of the doughnut and not on the hole, says Dad.)
If, dear readers (whoever you may be) are willing, able-bodied and interested, you can support me in my efforts. I have recently uploaded images to my Esty, Society6 and Saatchi Online, which have prints available for purchase. Your generous contribution will assist me in my work towards becoming established.
Thank you and happy holidays!
The incredible view from my studio desk.