05/01/2020

Artist Residency in Motherhood Weekly Progress Report.

Today ends the fifth week of my Artist Residency in Motherhood and I locked myself in the bathroom.

The lock down has hurtled me back to my postpartum experience. The constant “tension between independence and dependence, between self-assertion and self-abnegation and between love and hate” is overwhelming. (p.11, Parker)

Weekend goal: re-read Mother Love /Mother Hate by Rozsika Parker.

The difference between lock down and postpartum is that now my child can assert herself and express her identity in opposition to mine verbally.

Redemption is in the fact “that conflicts generated by maternal ambivalence are potentially creative.” (preface, Parker)

In the studio this week—–

Playing with text collage, quote by Aeon.

Dryer lint paper continued. Laying damp paper over bodily care objects to create ghostly sculptures. Mother/Daughter pairs.

Knitting continued. Working on creating a body size piece of knitting that I will use to scrub the floor.

Daily maternal movements stitch journal progress.

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Slowing Down and Handmade Paper

My Artist Residency in Motherhood just got extended by order of Oregon Governor Brown last night.

The Residency was supposed to end in May when my daughter returned to school. She will no longer be returning for the rest of the year. I honestly do not know how I feel about this yet.

(after coffee…)

I feel like I should panic or I’m supposed to be panicking… but also I’ve actually really enjoyed our time at home this week (as opposed to last week when it was not so great).

There I said it! (wipes sweat from forehead) Life is actually pretty good right now.

Except… I am running out of paper. Not toilet paper, just paper. My local art store where I buy my paper in bulk is closed and I have been feverishly making grids and dots soooo… its almost gone.

Work in Progress, toxic dots

Finding a solution to this predicament brings me back four years when I was making recycled paper at my in home childcare. We would take all those construction paper art projects the kids did, throw them in a blender and press the pulp onto a screen. The kids loved this.

I ended up doing this on my own with my discarded art projects and laying the still wet paper over some of the childcare toys, creating ghostly sculptures when the paper dried. After about 6 months of making paper like nothing else existed I stopped. I got interested in something else.

And now you know what I struggle with in my art practice. I get bored. I explore and then move on. (Or maybe this is just a challenging aspect of my personality- I get really excited about one thing and then when I have exhausted that excitement I move on.)

This quarantine may feed into that in the sense that I may run out of materials to continue on one path but it may also challenge this tendency.

Because life is so constant now and there is no where to go- I am forced to be still and work at a slower pace.

So this is my task for the day- make paper.