Monday, October 29, 2012

Sandy - the angels have lost their desire for us

This wasn't the post of the week that I had in mind. Right now, hurricane Sandy has made her turn towards New Jersey. I am hearing reports that in Ocean City the bay and ocean have already meet before the worst begins. Ocean City is practically underwater.

Arlene's is underwater on the 600 block of Asbury Avenue.

Accent Gallery is in the 900 block of Asbury Park, where four of my works are. I know all my friends have evacuated and I fear for the worst for Ocean City.Yesterday, I picked up one of two paintings from the Markeim Art Center in hopes to deliver it to Gallery U for the Halloween show on Wednesday. The other painting is going to stay at Markeim for the Russet, Rouge and Bronze exhibit. I am lucky that I have these two paintings of the trees.  I am not sure that the trees will survive this hurricane. 

I am thinking that I should have picked up my works in Ocean City. How could I have seen total destruction coming? I knew that we'd have a big storm, but who really know that it could get this bad - I don't think my mind could comprehend it. In picking up my work on Sunday, I was just trying to minimize my anxiety and live a normal life. Carrying on as if it was just going to be rain. 

Even on Saturday, I dropped off work for a juried show after picking up extra food, batteries and gasoline for the generator. I wanted this post to be about how difficult the decision process was to select what to submit  and some general ideas on juried shows. My inventory of current wood pieces is really low and I had considered submitting an older drawing. In the end, I choose a smaller wood piece, Good - Bye Clancy,  in favor of a larger drawing of cake. The drawing really doesn't fit with my current artistic philosophy.
Good-Bye Clancy, 15" x 28" salvaged wood, 2011

In building my reputation around the county, I want everyone to know what I  believe in as an artist. Here is the artist statement for the piece that I submitted.

Rachel Carson wrote “I have felt bound by a solemn obligation to do what I could. If I didn't try I could never be happy again in nature.” Like Carson, I am bound to care for the earth before it is irretrievably gone. This obligation forces me give value to what is ignored, stepped on or washed up as debris. Things that are in a state of transition are the most intriguing. In this ephemeral state, its interior life is vulnerable. I collect these things to preserve them - to hold on to something of its former self and prevent its ultimate demise. Good Bye Clancy is one piece in a series of works. On a walk, I discovered several storm-ruined boats along the beaches of New Jersey. By playing with surfaces of  the wood, I created patterns of color and textures. Arranging block patterns, like those from quilts, helps me work out life's ambiguities. 

Today, life is very ambiguous. These storms are not the storms of the century, but rather the new storms of the century brought on by climate change. Life will be different now. For several years now we have had several threats of storms - Issac, Irene, and now Sandy. Not to mention, two feet of snow. Maybe the politicians will start addressing these issues of climate change as parts of  New York City, Jersey City and Staten Island face evacuations- not just the shore communities. 

On a more interesting note, I have tested out my Gortex gear for the Arctic. The idea of the Gortex gear is to stay dry. Good news - the gear works. I was dry. My face was pretty dry - the balaclava will help but my glasses are a problem. Maybe this afternoon, I will try out the contact lens. The dog is too afraid to go outside alone so we are going for walks. 

This afternoon, I am going to the studio. I have more blocks to arrange in a neat and orderly fashion. 

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