Tomorrow I am looking forward to meeting Jen Davis. She is speaking as the annual lecturer for Milwaukee's Coalition of Photographic Arts, in conjunction with the Photography Council of the Milwaukee Art Museum. I have been an admirer of her intensely personal, yet culturally universal work for years.
Artist's Statement The perfect body image in this culture requires that one be thin. Images of perfectly fit individuals saturate the visual media, creating icons which establish a norm that makes all else seem to be deviant. Overweight people do not satisfy what is attractive or desired. In this body of work, I deal with my insecurities about my body image and the direct correlation between self-perception and the way one is perceived by others. Most of my pictures take place in my home, revealing aspects of myself that are private and personal. I am evaluating my self-image, as an obese female in her 20s, dealing with ever-present pressures from the outside world. This process of self-exploration has helped to lay the foundation of finding my voice and recognizing my actions and insecurities. My work is solely based on personal experiences that I have re-constructed into a photograph, but I believe that it speaks generally to the situation of many women in our culture.
She will give her talk in the Lubar Auditorium at MAM at 6:15 PM followed by a reception at 7:00 PM.
Living in a small town frequently makes my life difficult. I have to travel at least 50 miles round trip to do many of the things that city people walk to the corner for. Thus it is a small recompense that I could walk across the street from my studio to our Village Hall, fill in a short form, receive a ballot and exercise my franchise in 5 minutes door to door. While it didn't have the excitement and anticipation of standing in line with my fellow citizens and casting my vote on Election Day, it also didn't have the several drawbacks. Chief among them standing in line for an hour and a half (the 2004 wait time) with my fellow citizens.
If you think that submitting an absentee ballot is only for those in the hospital or outside the country you would be mistaken. Election officials in Wisconsin are actually encouraging early voting in the hopes of easing some of the difficulty from what is expected to be the largest voter turnout in memory, if not history.
Just as so many of us face serious concerns about economic security for ourselves and our country an opportunity comes along to invest in something that will not only feed the soul but, most assuredly, will increase in value. Paul Schiek has announced the second subscription series from These Birds Walk.Putting your money in the Bank of Photography makes your life richer now and your portfolio richer later.
"Commodities is a collaborative project between me and spirited bidders. Art pieces are created based on specific marketable goods and cater to niche audiences of collectors and enthusiasts. The works are then exhibited on the auction website, eBay, under search terms that coincide with the vernacular from which each piece derives. Potential buyers may experience the thrill of shopping and the excitement of competition by vying against one another to win the art piece. The culminating action occurs at the close of each auction once rival bidders complete each piece by determining its value."
The Anachronism of Basic Instinct from Somewhere in Middle America Colin Blakely
Flak Photo and Pause to Begin are collaborating on the much anticipated roll out of the project. Flak Photo is posting work from all of the participants throughout the rest of October. The artist galleries are up to look through all the work. Starting today, following the release last week of the video encompassing the full road trip, Pause to Begin will have multimedia slide shows on each artist's work and process. It is a remarkable opportunity to gain insight and exposure to emerging contemporary photographers, rather than waiting the 5 or 10 or 20 years that usually pass before interviews and studio visits are made.
Pause to Begin has also announced that a catalogue and limited edition books will be available in December 2008. If you haven't subscribed to their newsletter I suggest you get on the list by clicking on the Resources tab.
Update: The multimedia pieces do not seem to be up as of 4:00 PM today, keep checking back.
The print I am offering as a reminder of action is a photograph I made in Metropolis, IllinoislastFriday on my way to Kentucky. Today I received an email from CAN (Contemporary Art Network) letting me know about a lecture available on their web site given by critic, curator and writer Lisa Paul Streitfield, "Shifting Political Landscape and the Visual Arts". I clicked on the link and this picture is the first of a series posted to illustrate her fascinating talk. I highly recommend you listen.
In yesterday's post on Blog Action Day I mentioned a print offer to follow. Here it is. Make a donation or loan to any organization working to repair poverty anywhere in the world. Forward me a copy of your donation receipt, in any amount, and I will send you a 5 x 7 print. If your receipt contains information that you don't want seen, then find an easy way to get me the information, including your mailing address. I want this to be easy and I want to send you a reminder that you took action.That you took a little time and money to do something heroic.
If you feel that reading and writing blogs is so much hot air, here is an opportunity to do something about it. Today, October 15, 2008 is Blog Action Day 08 and this year's theme is Poverty. If you are feeling that circumstances and events are beyond your control, then here is an opportunity to change that.I am taking this day to by-pass the latest 20X200 offering and sending the money to Nothing but Nets and Kiva.
Malaria kills more than 1,000,000 people a year around the globe. A $10 donation through Nothing but Nets will provide a mosquito net which can protect a family of four for 4 years. Kiva is an organization that facilitates the disbursement and repayment of micro loans to individuals and groups in developing nations in order to empower their rise from poverty. For as little as $25 you can participate in this proven economic paradigm shift.
Please take the time to visit these sites and participate if you can. It is an opportunity. It is an opportunity to own a piece of Hope and Change. If you need a sweetener then check back tomorrow. I will have a print offer for anyone who makes a loan or donation.
I am on my way out of town until next week. I have a couple of audio books on my iPod and good weather predicted for the drive to Southern Kentucky. While I'm gone I would like you to read Edward Winkelman's eloquent expression of high dudgeon, Mad? Sir, You Don't Know Mad!
If you're the praying kind, now might be a good time. If you're not, find something you can do to help save what's left of this country.
There are those who think I am a little anal retentive when it comes to organization. As if that's a bad thing!? In order to keep track of the prints and pieces I have collected I made up an Excel sheet listing Title, Artist, edition, date acquired, price paid, where the print is kept, etc. I'm currently helping a friend do the same thing with her own work.I think of it as a contact sheet for my collection.
Yesterday a new piece arrived:
If the prices (the work is representative of the very best spirit and art that this country has to offer) at Art for Obama are simply beyond your means this Martin Schoeller portrait being offered by Hasted Hunt in limited edition was $250. 100% of that goes directly to the campaign.It is the best contribution "thank you" I have ever received.
In honor of tonight's debate I want to pass along this link for printing your own campaign posters if you are a supporter of the Obama/Biden ticket. Change the Thought has a series of poster files available for download and printing (I printed the ones above on 13 x 19 paper). The only caveat is they must be distributed for free.
Friday I had the pleasure of discovering (in that it is new to me) the work of Daniel Farnum. His series Me Growing Up is being exhibited in the Photography Gallery at MIAD until October 10.To my knowledge this is an under investigated landscape. The suburban/exurban haunts of the pre-driving adolescent.
"The recognition of adulthood is connected to the acceptance that childhood has slipped into the past. Memories from the places where we searched for maturity and independence are the residue that is left behind."
He gave a gallery talk via Skype; thoughtfully sharing his motivation, inspiration and process with the students. As an educator himself he was comfortably open and generous. Quite an extraordinary thing to have him virtually present.
Fixated? Me? I just find it remarkable that while visiting a friend's office yesterday she showed me the work of a photographer I was unfamiliar with. The beautiful life size photograms of Kunie Sugiura. When I opened her book, Artists and Scientists, it opened to this page.
Zoe was courageous gracious enough to take me up on my offer of a wager in yesterday's post. If you check the comments (pay no attention to those wild accusations left by the "agent provocateur"!) you'll see that if the Phillies win I will put a Congratulations, Phillies sign in my window. When the Brewers win she will put a Congratulations, Brewers sign in her window.
Today's game was just a warm-up for the boys. The sun'll come out tomorrow! It will be a big day! First the Brewers will beat the Phils and then Biden will make mincemeat out of Palin! Win! Win! I love this game!