COVID has brought with it many challenges and love it or loath it technology is playing a greater role in our ability to connect across physical boundaries.
Articulation members zoomed into view on my iPhone screen for a mid-June catch up. As with any zoom event connectivity was conditional and prone to the pitfalls of bandwidth, unmuted microphones, and attempted screenshots that disconnected some of us. Basically the limitations most of us have encountered during this most unusual of years as our new normal. Our best bet, I think, is to reframe change and uncertainty by putting those concerns into a new box called opportunity.
|Opportunities for R and R lie under these summer skies over Lake Winnipeg in July of 2020.|
During our zoom meeting, we had an opportunity to gather as a group and reflect on some of the new logistical concerns we now face. Wendy and Donna's work in Calgary setting up a show of Articulation's work, "Provinces", at the Fish Creek Library, like many events was postponed, locked down actually, and this work will be packed up and returned to sender in due course.
During this most unusual of summers. the extraordinary circumstances we all face require adaptation. Provinces was the first of our adapted exhibit plans. Our group commitments are now rescheduling tentatively for later dates. Nothing can be cast in stone with COVID still a long way from being behind us. We can however look forward to embracing a time when it is. For now, we have more time to review work completed over the past twenty years and continue with personal studio work. Stay tuned for firm dates and events as they can be confirmed in the future.
|Wendy Klotz at work at play outdoors|
|Donna Clement is finding inspiration in the shadows.|
Our summer routines are also requiring adaptation as we search for new opportunities during these COVID affected times when festivals, markets, and events have been tempered, altered, or outright cancelled across the country. Canada Day too was not immune to these restrictions. In our neck of the woods, our annual family reunion was considerably smaller. The lake was still in view, the sounds of waves on the shore and bird song provided background white noise for those gathered and I think though limited in number we were more grateful to commune in person as some restrictions eased.
|Ingrid Lincoln's Studio Rumble is procuring some interesting results like this cording project.|
Like creatives everywhere, members of Articulation generally agreed that creativity fuels our lives regardless or sometimes because of the external circumstances we face.
Ingrid Lincoln of Winnipeg has been inspired to experiment with silk cords. Ingrid writes..."These are as a result of my COVID 19 studio rumble. I had some liquid dyes and fixatives which needed to be used. The fixative had started to separate. I dyed the silk fabric until the fixative was totally used. These cords are made from that fabric. Checking online it appears that particular dye is no longer available. I intend to continue with the chords so will have to experiment with new dyes. There is lots of fabric still to use up. Stay tuned."
|An example of Ingrid's small collages|
Ingrid's studio rumble, I love that term, also unearthed some beautiful boiled wool she was not able to part with. She has since made a jacket that requires closures, perhaps she says, as a symbol of our COVID mentality. Creative layers with silk organza and hand stitching are evolving into a small collage series. How big is small? We will have to stay tuned to find that out.
Lean Clifford has many UFO's and is addressing the situation from her basement studio, now home office.
"For me, it has been a blessing and a curse. Working from home means I am sometimes working till the wee hours as the computer is just a staircase away. The plus side is when I am stumped I dye fabric (400 pieces and counting), add stitches to a quilt, or organize a shelf."
Like Ingrid, expiry dates on supplies have been an inspiration. Her thematic focus has generally returned to Articulation's WAR project. She has been engaged in more bookmaking featuring fractured and compartmentalized ideas based on her maternal grandparents, their relationship, circumstances, and achievements.
|Solstice provided an opportunity to play with some new routines|
Leann's industry has been greatly affected by the COVID 19 restrictions. The integrity of Canada's food chain, and the beef industry in particular she says, has not particularly changed however the pandemic has required restructuring and creative responses to establish a new order for Canadian Beef producers. Art is definitely therapeutic for Leann at this time.
Donna Clement had four events planned for the 2020 festival season. Working to a deadline is her boss. She says COVID has definitely required some personal restructuring. For Donna, much time is spent pondering paperworks and journal ideas. Inspiration is never an issue. She confesses she is engaged in plenty of play with materials. The discipline to carry creative starts through to a finished product though has been a challenge.
Donna's garden and larder have been distinct beneficiaries of this new normal. I think in hindsight Donna just might find she has the foundation for a new body of work mostly formulated when she sits down to reflect on this summer of COVID.
|Finding inspiration in a farmers market bouquet.|
|This piece from my Re Blooming/ Re Patterning Series is on view in Morden Manitoba with the craft council's show|
During our zoom meeting, we got a glimpse of Lesley Turner's grandson Osmund having a Nana moment. Family we can all agree has been and remains a paramount concern for all of us at this time.
Lesley's Vancouver Island garden has been a major consumer of her time to date. Slugs are proving to be her nemesis while proximity to Osmund is the largest silver lining of the COVID shut down.
Lesley is pleased to be back in her studio two days per week, aiming for three and currently working on colour studies. She says she is having a real good time of it. What an opportunity that is.
Her "The Laundry Room" show with Laura Feeleus, like events everywhere, has been moved to September of 2021 for now.
|Lesley at work on her colour studies looking at value.|
I have continued work on my Re Blooming/Re Patterning Series, stretching finished panels onto boards and I have even found myself back in my Exchange District Studio in Winnipeg with paintbrushes in hand. Getting back to painting felt like a perennial bloom in itself after such an extended hiatus. I have been grateful to clients who have sought sanctuary in the colour of my work via my website and purchased or commissioned pieces as a result. Their enthusiasm as proven to be restorative and encouraging when many, if not all avenues of studio revenue have evaporated. Thank you. I am so very grateful for your support in words and deed.
|I may be able to fry an egg on the floor but being at the studio with a paintbrush in hand is a gift despite the recent heat|
Lake time has been a salve during recent hot spells on the prairies. I have nothing but gratitude for mother nature despite the fact that the more than one-hundred-year-old building that houses my creative space is twice as hot as anywhere else midsummer. Not a complaint, just a statement of fact and a reminder of my Australian roots in extended summers without air conditioning.
|Wow, just wow. Evidence of Lesley Turner's green thumb.|
On behalf of Articulation, I hope you are getting a chance to enjoy the beauty and inspiration of our Canadian summers, wherever you are. May you find ways to connect with your loved ones and find opportunities to celebrate together during these challenging times.
Stay safe, stay socially distanced, and be kind and creative.
Until next time,