Common Ground tests

In June of this year I received a travel grant to go to Finland to work on a body of work about walking through landscapes I have lived in, and the effect it has on my body and memory.  In Finland I explored a forest landscape that I had never lived in but one that was from my mother's ancestry and is visually very similar to the one in Connecticut that I grew up in. 

It is probably well-known to world adventurers but it was my first time traveling overseas and I was struck by how simultaneously alike and how different the people I met were as well. Certainly the internet has connected the world visually in a whole new way, but I didn't expect the actual "mirror world" experience described by William Gibson in one of my favorite books, Pattern Recognition. Where everything is the same, but just slightly askew. 

I'm editing images now and deciding how they will fold into a larger scale installation I am working on about this idea. These are some photo "sketches" for an piece called "Common Ground", which is loosely about the land in both places looking so much alike that it is hard to tell where each one is located,  but one is imbued with deep memories, and one has nearly none.


Tiny Houses = Tiny Presses

It's not about tiny houses, its about tiny presses! A few years ago I downsized several things in my life, my large etching press being one of them. I've missed it though, so this summer, to fit my current smaller house, I decided to get this tiny press. 

Printing on my family's old kitchen table. My Mom's summer cucumber salad bowl acting as paper soaking tray.

Printing on my family's old kitchen table. My Mom's summer cucumber salad bowl acting as paper soaking tray.

I just set it up and in the spirit of the last month of summer decided to print whatever and wherever I wanted with this portable little press. Putting deadlines of other my art projects on hold for a bit and throwing caution to the wind.

To start off tonight I pulled a rune at random from the beautiful set my friend Kibi Schultz made for me and got the blank rune, (Unknowable) Although this rune is often said not to be a "true" rune, since it is without markings, I like the idea of it and it seems perfect for the start of the month and this project. 

The blank rune.

The blank rune.

From The Viking Runes, "blank is the end, blank is the beginning…what beckons is the creative power of the unknown". Here is the inkjet monoprint of the rune. I like this method of monoprinting, that is based in photography, since you have little control over in how the image ends up. When the plate and the paper enter under the roller, there is a strange alchemy that happens. Here my image has bled, changed color, and become a mystery in itself.