Thursday, April 26, 2012

And now for something a little different....

The above photo is from the newest set I have been working on. These were made for The "Artifact, Archive, Orchard," project at the Peabody Historical Society at Brooksby Farm. My fine employers, Montserrat College of Art also took part with the help of Sarah Smith presenting some work shops previous to last night. Book arts, poetry and art collided here for a few days to look at the history of Brooksby Farm in particular. Thanks to Colleen Michaels and all for considering me to produces these banners.

This was an interesting challenge for me and an interesting experiment. One, because of the volume of work needed to fill the space. I ended up with a total of 16 banners being installed. Usually the sets are about half of that. Secondly, these are of American history and I have never in my life delved down that lane to make art. None the less, as I started this project, I found myself very involved in it trying to figure out what exactly to do with this subject.

At first, I thought I should represent everything very literally. You know, straight forward landscapes and the like. After a couple of days with that experiment I threw that idea out the door. Silly man! I chose to work similiar to past projects and piece them together stencil by stencil. Very time consuming but much better. It is like solving a puzzle without knowing what the finished puzzle should look like.

Everyone last night at the reception/ reading was very gracious. I even got to bumble my way through a few words in front of everyone. Ted Pattison, a conservator at Harvard College, presented a lecture on books from the 1800's which I found myself wrapped up in.  So with the end of the evening, I decided to leave this set with the Historical Society as they seemed to have found a good home there.

Good day all.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

1 project = 4 months and some thoughts on one year later!

Well now... it has just come to the attention of my brain that I have spent the bulk of the last 5 months working on the repeatedly posted 8 nobori flags. Never in my years on this planet would I have thought I had the attention span to do that. I suppose that makes all well in the land of Velvet Pelican Projects. This past week I was lucky enough to install the at Endicott College as part of the Art in Odd Places project hosted there. See below.

Fortunately none of the other participants had chosen the bridge across the pond. I had originally planned to dig several holes on the campus and plant them. When I drove up I realized the bridge had to be claimed. The idea of using a common passage had not occurred to me. One of the first ideas for this project was to have them meld into a more serene grounding. Then the idea hit me like a brick. So what if they are not as per the first intention? What if the go in a common area. Louis Sullivan did this with his architecture. The melding of organic forms with populated areas. And it makes sense. The return to an easier more calm existence in hurried times.... love it.

This was a very pleasant experience. It was interesting to hear the many people who passed by and talked for a few minutes. All of them enjoyed the notion of having them there and were happy to see them. As I usually exist within my tiny bubble of the art world, it was interesting to hear from others outside of that bubble and hear their thoughts. I think Velvet Pelican Projects will continue along these lines putting more art out into the world. When one exists so much in there own existence it is good to leave that bubble and explore.

I also must thank my young and reluctant helper, my kid, Lucien Camus. He came along after much pushing him out the door. He worked with me for and hour installing them and actually seemed to enjoy it. It is funny. This project brought many thoughts to mind. A year ago I returned to producing art on a regular basis. Starting out with the idea of bringing Velvet Pelican from under the bog, helping open the Blue Think Box and the many days of the week that I get to work in there. Hey! A pretty good life.

I now feel as though I am running out of words. Up for next week is a 19 flag set going up at Brooksby Farm for a poetry festival next week. Posting late next week. Later!