Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Participant list with assigned days and percentages

1. 0-1% Angela Hed
2. 1-3% Sonja Olson
waxing crescent
3. 3-8% Erin Maurelli
4. 8-15% Beth Dorsey
5. 15-23% Barb Gibson
6. 23-33% Sara R. Parr
7. 33-43% Olga S. Ricalde Moreno
first quarter
8. 44-53% Allison Bolah
waxing gibbous
9. 56-62% AnaLaura Juarez
10. 67-75% Betsy Byers
11. 77-84% Raychel Steinbach
12. 86-91% Anna Boyer
13. 93-96% Lynda Monick-Isenberg
14. 98-99% Holly Rios
15. 99-100% Hend Al-Mansour
16. 99-100% Rebecca Alm
waning gibbous
17. 95-99% A.K. Vincent
18. 90-96% Mary Leikvold
19. 83-91% Diana Eicher
20. 75-84% Laura Brown
21. 67-75% Monica Edwards-Larson
22. 57-65% Carol Inderieden
third quarter
23. 48-54% Jennifer Hibbard
waning crescent
24. 39-43% Pat Benincasa
25. 29-32% CB Sherlock
26. 21-23% Bridget O’Malley
27. 13-15% Abbi Allan
28. 6-9% Caitlin Warner
29. 2-4% Emily Hoisington

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Thoughts (from Raychel)

My apologies for getting these on here so late, but I have been working like a mad woman getting my proof together and have been thinking more and more about the questions. 

  • What does it mean to you to be collaborating with this group of women? 
I am honored to be invited to participate in this project. Some of you I know as mentors, colleagues,  friends, and others I have not yet had the pleasure of meeting. I just moved to Bangkok, Thailand in April and have been working non-stop getting everything I need to set-up shop here for 2 years. This project comes at a very important time for me as I try to re-establish myself in a new place but also long to stay connected with the fabulous artists I know in Minneapolis / Saint Paul.
  • What would you like to learn or receive from the others? 
I am interested to learn other people's working process, and if some might be interested in sharing their studio set up and process work, I would LOVE to see it!

  • How does this project relate to your other artwork and interests?
I have never dealt directly with the subject matter of womanhood previously in my work. I am, however, very interested in cycles, mapping, movement, and water (which I am working with in terms of tides). The more I thought about my connection to lunation, the more I realized how closely related all of my interests are with woman's cycles and the moon's effects on our bodies.
  • What topics are you researching in preparation for your print?
Besides lunation, I have been researching the topographical maps of the moon, the tides, the ocean, reefs, and the menstrual cycle as it pertains to my assigned day in the lunar cycle.
  • How are you interpreting the proportions of dark and light visually and conceptually?
I am using a combination of printing methods - photo polymer plate, linoleum block, and mono printing. I am keeping in mind the percentage of light and dark with the plate and block. When these layers have been completed, the exact shade I choose for the monoprinted portion will (hopefully) maintain the percentage and add a bit more illumination to the piece (hopefully the silver ink I ordered arrives in time!).
  • What thoughts or concerns do you have about making something that will be understood in the context of 28 other prints that you haven't seen yet?
I normally don't find myself spending this much time going back and forth about what the print should look like - usually I try to create several mono prints and work on them simultaneously. Eventually I abandon all but the ones that I feel are best conveying my meaning.
With this piece, I have felt a significant amount of pressure to 'get it right'. And I have also tried to consider how my piece will set in the book amongst the rest - for example, I considered sewing into my print, but didn't know how the stitching on the backside might negatively impact the piece on the next page, so decided against sewing.
  • What is significant to you about what it means to be female and experience the rhythm of the lunar cycle?
I am mostly amazed when talking to my partner about how he doesn't notice certain things about what is happening inside his body. This isn't necessarily a female-only ability, but for me, being aware of what is 'normal' for my body during certain times of the month, during season changes, and when changing environment is very important to how I feel I fit into the world around me.

Sunday, July 14, 2013

Allison Bolah's thoughts

Apologies to Allison for the delay, she sent me this for posting a long time ago but it got lost in my inbox. The rest of this post is directly quoting her:

What does it mean to you to be collaborating with this group of women? How does this project relate to your other artwork and interests? What is significant to you about what it means to be female and experience the rhythm of the lunar cycle?

  • I had an interesting (and somewhat contentious) conversation with an MFA classmate about menstruation. He said he wouldn't want to be a woman and have to deal with his period every month. It's funny, I've never 'resented' or wished my period away; I've been working to bring myself in sync with my body, its needs throughout my menstrual cycle, and its connection to the lunar cycle. In fact, when things run smoothly during my period, I take it as an indication that in my larger life, I'm doing well. I think women (very generally speaking) have this built in rhythm that can serve as a metaphor for other things. If there's such a thing as women's culture, this and childbirth might be the root of the symbols that shape it. In my work, I think about language; far from excluding trans-women or other for whom the accepted biology of 'womanhood' is not the determinant of their woman-ness, menstruation as concept not an experience is something we can share between women to elucidate our understanding of other lived experiences.
What would you like to learn or receive from the others?
  • I have no idea what I'm doing! (Seriously) I'd love to see how other artist respond to and shape hints, loose parameters.
What would you like to share of yourself with the group?
  • I worked in isolation until August 2012; I hope to bring my 'A' game and see my work in conversation with others'. I don't even know what I have to share at this point.
What topics are you researching in preparation for your print?
  • I'm pretty certain I'll be working with text, so my research is how to illuminate that text on black paper. I'm thinking of working with silver ink…
How are you interpreting the proportions of dark and light visually and conceptually?
  • The silver words will mathematically (loosely) take up 15% of the page
What thoughts or concerns do you have about making something that will be understood in the context of 28 other prints that you haven't seen yet?
  • No concerns. Well, maybe that my work will be very plain or unskilled as I'm still getting the hang of things…
What are your hopes and dreams for this project?
  • I hope my portion comes out right!!!

Who do you imagine to be the ideal audience for this project?
  • I'd love the self-identified women in my life to find personal resonance with the work and and the self-identified men in my life to know a little bit more about the depth and breadth of experiences of womanhood.

Thoughts on Paper?

Hi all, Erin sent me this:

I have been looking at French Paper Company for dark paper.
There is a rich dark blue, and a pure black under the 'Construction-Tones'  (They have funny names for all of their collections.)  50 sheets of 80lb Cover, size 12.5" x 19" is about $28.  This would be fine for Letterpress printing, relief block printing.  I'm not sure about silk screen - it might curl.
It is not 100% cotton paper, so it is not forever archival, but I think it would be ok.  They have many other colors too, if people are interested."

I'm thinking of using Rives Lightweight, which is the same weight: 115 gsm, 80 lbs/1000
You don't have to have your working proof printed on your final paper if you are still researching and testing papers to find out what will work best for your print. If you have comments or questions let's discuss them on this blog!

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Hi Emily and all others,

Finally registered successfully to this blog. There are only found 5 posts. Is that all or is there something more?
It surprised me that I am assigned the full moon. I like it of course. But I did not think I will get it.
I was humbled. Thanks
I am working on creating a drawing for a photo-polymer plate. Nothing worthy of display yet.

Sunday, June 30, 2013

More notes and reflections from last Sunday's meeting.

Here's a bit more from last week's meeting:

People attending were Emily Hoisington, Betsy Byers, Erin Maurelli, Hend Al-Mansour, Sonja Olson, Olga Ricalde, and Angela Hed.

We talked a bit about technical details, starting with paper: Erin is considering using a French paper and could organize a bulk order if anyone else wants to, please contact her. We discussed how the book will be more varied than unified, because different print processes will required different papers, and some people might be making their own paper, so we will not be all using the same paper. The important thing is that everyone keeps in mind the flexibility required by a stab-binding when selecting paper and paper grain.

We talked about bleed prints vs. prints with borders. Several people thought that bleed prints (going off the edge and even continuing under the gutter where the book will be bound) would work best with the idea of progressing from dark to light to dark. I agreed that would be nice but stated that I do not want to require any limitations beyond those that were in the original invitation, because some people have already begun work on their plates and at least one person has already delivered completed prints to me (Thanks Pat Benincasa!) So, the conclusion is that you may make a print with borders or not, but if you haven't committed yet and think that it's a good idea, you might want to consider running it off the edges.

We talked about wanting to have uniform signing guidelines. I should make an example of that quickly, as some people finish their prints! We thought that signing prints on the back would be nice, and to make sure that signatures will not be hidden in the binding.

We talked about the kind of collaboration that this is. Some people were interested in coordinating colors with others in the book, while others wanted to work independently and be surprised by what others made. I set the project up so that people could work as independently as they like, but everyone knows who is doing what page in the book and has each other's email addresses, so if you'd like to talk to those whose print comes before or after yours, you are welcome to do that!

Erin wanted to remind everyone about MCBA's open studios on Tuesdays from 6-9pm as a place to work or get advice, and that she will be around and happy to help people until her baby comes sometime in July.

Olga wanted to remind people of the research and inspiration available in MCBA's library, and she is there on Wednesday afternoons.

Several people were interested in meeting again before the deadline for working proofs. If you weren't able to come to the first meeting due to time/date/location and would really like to come to another one, please email me with your preferences and I'll see what I can do. I can't guarantee anything when coordinating a group this large, but I do want this to be a chance to build community and continue conversations. Please keep posting on this blog as a way to continue the conversation! Use the questions I posted before as a starting point if you like.

Hend sent me her thoughts in response to some of the questions:

Question 1
I have been collaborating with other artists lately. I have 2 other projects. It is not easy to collaborate but it makes the work richer and of a larger context. It opens me up to different things artistically and personally. I feel this would help to integrate myself within the Minnesota fabric by bringing me into intimate contact with other women artists.

Question 4
I hope to expand my printing techniques. My theme will not shift much. But the size of my print will be smaller. I had a dream of making a book one day, this might be a sage way to that.

Question 5
“The Full Moon” is a song from early Islamic community in Medina, the second holy city in Islam, it was sung by young women and girls of that city to welcome the Immigrating Prophet Muhammed from Mecca. The event is the start of the Islamic lunar calendar. The image I will make will be of a group of women singing with the background of Full Moon. It will also include an Arabic text of the lyrics and Arabic months.

Question 6
Because I love circles I will make a large white circle with silhouettes of figures, trees, houses and animals. One side of the print will contain the receiving city and people, the other Muhammed and his camel.

Question 8
Contrary to other cultures, the Arabic for moon is masculine while the sun is feminine. The words moon and the “full moon” in particular are used to describe beautiful people.

Question 9 My two hopes are to improve on my technique and to belong to a new community. 

I also have some written notes from Erin from the meeting (we did a few minutes of quiet writing before discussing) and I'll paraphrase them here:

4: Art work relates to current work: The body, particularly the feminine body, changes and evolves through time. Functions as a machine--autopilot as far as menses, menopause, pregnancy, etc. What happens when that machine malfunctions?

5. What are you researching for this project? Re-exploring kitchen witchery. Folklore and the mystical, connection to season, earth, cycle. Trying to integrate that with the more mechanical/medical imagery in my past works. 

7. Thoughts or concerns about making something to be understood in context: Concern that each of us iwll have a literal image of the moon on each page. My thoughts revolve around the New Moon as a beneficial time to start a project, adventure, or endeavor. But in a body/mechanical way. How do I approach mechanics in the new moon? Why does this folklorish concept resonate with me?

Ok, now you've all heard some from me, Hend, and Erin. Please post your thoughts here!

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

What does it mean to you to be collaborating with this group of women?

We had a good meeting on Sunday. Seven people came, a good representative of the variety in the group. I asked each person at the meeting to share their notes or reflections from the meeting on this blog. I hope those of you who didn't come to the meeting but who are interested in sharing your thoughts about being part of this project will also post to or comment on this blog so that the conversation can continue.

The question I'd like to write in response to is, What does it mean to you to be collaborating with this group of women? 

This group of women includes colleagues, friends, and acquaintances from several circles, people older and younger than me, those who are my teachers and mentors as well as students. I am approaching this project as a learning experience. As instigator/facilitator, my role is like being a teacher, and writing up the invitation felt a bit like writing an assignment. But I am hoping more and more to have my role be that of a student, to learn from the diverse perspectives that everyone brings to this project. It is also a chance to build community, and make artwork that draws its meaning from its context in that community.

Please post your thoughts and questions!