This past weekend I had the very wonderful experience of seeing my sister read poems from her collection, MAMMAL ROOM. It was an adventure, driving to Brooklyn and finding the funky little bar/bookshop, but I had my trusty navigator and fabulous friend, Monica, to help me out! Monica and I were fascinated by Kristen and the two other poets reading that night because, as visual artists, the poetry world was one we had not yet discovered. It makes me happy to know there are these little pockets of poets and writers, a small community of creative people who make events like Triptych Readings happen! It makes me happy to know that happens outside of the craft world.
As part of my adventure to the big city, Monica took me to Brooklyn Metal Works, where she has a dedicated bench for making her jewels. Right now, though, she is preparing new work for an upcoming show at the Society of Arts and Crafts in Boston. We happily pushed cast parts and pieces around the table as we brainstormed and problem solved. It was a bit like grad school again, only way more fun and with a better doughnut shop near by.
Seeing my sister read, spending time with Monica in the studio, and of course my visit to Contemporary Craft a few weeks ago has me longing for a creative community. I did not realize how important that type of community is to me as a maker and artist because, until recently, I had not been without one. I enjoy the energy and buzz of a studio; it encourages me to make. I enjoy attending artist lectures and gallery openings; they encourage me to explore, read, and think critically. And I enjoy speaking about and exhibiting my own work; it encourages me to connect with people I may not have otherwise. Each of those points may only be scratching the surface of a larger issue for me because it is less about enjoying these aspects of community and more about needing them. With that realization, finding a new community is something I am working toward.
In the mean time, I’ve been feeling like I needed to get my hands working on something new without my brain getting in the way. A jump start project, RJM (Radical Jewelry Makeover) style, was in order! I recombined components of a broken bracelet to create miniature pendants in gold with oxidized silver chains. It was a good project for me: necklaces (or, not brooches), multiples (or, not just one piece), sellable (or, not emotionally attached). This may be expanded upon…but that is another post for another time.
If there is one thing I know for sure, it feels good to make, and I’m going to keep on doing it!