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Monday, May 30, 2011

New Projects!

I have two new projects that I am excited about. First, I am a starting an alphabet of adjectives, which will be the next installment of my Art and Grammar series. I haven't finalized my list yet, but I am definitely using "Asymmetrical" for A. Perhaps "Indescribable" for I, "Paradoxical" for P?

Second, I bought a Greenleaf Brimbles Mercantile kit to make with the girls. I really love the idea of a miniature store. We are going to make ours a bakery, but I also found a Brimbles flower shop and a Brimbles witches supply store. Our kit arrives next week - I will keep you posted on our progress.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Guggenheim Show

Megan's class was fortunate enough to participate in the Guggenheim's Learning Through Art program this year. Through this program, teaching artists from the Guggenheim worked with Megan's class for 20 weeks to help the students create multimedia puppets. Megan loved the program, and her puppet is now on display at the Guggenheim's A Year with Children 2011 show. On display through June 15th!

Sunday, May 15, 2011


At long last, I have completed my Abstract Nouns Alphabet. Here are the letters again:

A - Anarchy
B - Beauty
C - Curiosity
D - Deception
E - Ennui
F - Fun
G - Greed
H - Haste
I - Idea
J - Joy
K - Knowledge
L - Love
M - Mystery
N - Neutrality
O - Opinion
P - Peace
Q - Quirkiness
R - Resistance
S - Sustainability
T - Tradition
U - Unwillingness
V - Victory
W - Wit
X - Xenophobia
Y - Yesterday
Z - Zeal

Many thanks to everyone who helped! And special thanks to Megan, Devon, and Grace for their expert design of the letter "Q."

Z is for Zeal

I used "Zeal" for the letter Z of my Abstract Nouns alphabet. I was going to use "Zilch" and leave the square blank, but I ultimately decided that I needed more color in the bottom right quadrant of the poster. "Zeal" balances it out nicely.
You can't quite tell from the picture, but I am especially happy with the texture of this square. I used bold scrubbing strokes for a zealous finish. And I am finally finished!

Saturday, May 14, 2011

New Purchase!

We went to Woodstock today, and I was lucky enough to find this etching hanging in the back of a thrift store. It was labeled simply as "Local Artist Lithograph from 20's - 30's." I asked the shopkeeper if she knew anything about the piece, and she replied "No. It's old, that's all I know." I bought it anyway, and looked up the artist when we got home. Here is the print I found:

Justin Murray, American, 1912–1987
Powell Street 5:30 p.m., ca. 1940–1945
17.7 x 12.4 cm (image)
California State Library long loan

Not on exhibit

Artist Biography:
Born in Minneapolis. Moved to California 1928. Studied art at Chouinard in Los Angeles. Federal Art Project in 1930's, theatrical scenes and murals. Moved to San Francisco 1938. Cartoons in SF Chronicle and Coast Magazine. Bought etching press in 1940 and made many etchings of local subjects. Moved to Mendocino in 1973 and died there. Also drummer with dance bands in San Francisco area.

There is also a book of Murray's etchings called Cable Car Daze in San Francisco (James Ladd Delkin, 1947). I will try to find this at the public library.

So the artist wasn't local to Woodstock, and the print wasn't from the 20s or 30s, but I love it just the same.

Sunday, May 01, 2011

Y is for Yesterday

Okay, back to Abstract Nouns. It took me a while to decide between Yesterday and Yearning for Y. I ultimately chose Yesterday, and settled on a traditional needlepoint sampler for the illustration. According to The Milwaukee Public Museum,

Every sampler is a historical record of one girl’s educational training and the type and value placed on that education. The overall design, materials used, and design motifs give evidence of her culture, religion, social class, and personal artistic accomplishments and abilities.

It is therefore appropriate that my sampler should include images from Space Invaders, another symbol of yesterday.

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