Today was my first day in my Residency! What an incredible place and experience. I wasn't sure what to expect and thought I'd get here and the staff would be like, "Well, you're on your own, go to it." Though they are saying, go to it, they couldn't be more helpful and supportive! Part guides, part assistants, part friends and colleagues they have been so great. It was so wonderful. Alvaro the Administrative Coordinator and Adriana, Program Staff could not be more helpful and kind! Lydia cooks for the Center and made a delicious vegan/gluten free meal for us all for lunch....They feed us everyday! Alicia, Program Director arrives at the end of the week and I can not wait to work with her more directly. One more artist joined me today for a 3 week residency as well. His name is Oswaldo. He was born in En Salvador, but lives in Montreal. He draws, does printmaking and stop motion animation. He is a working artist and we talked about how there are way more governmental supports for artists in Canada. He mainly sustains off of production grants and awards provided by the government! Just another reason Canada is so appealing! Aside from Oswaldo and the Center staff, there is no one else using the space, so Oswaldo and I have full access to the materials, tools, space and staff!
I moved into my studio and it is lovely. It is up a cast iron spiral staircase and surrounded in sprawling ivy. It is private and quiet. I will post pictures tomorrow! The studio connects to the Center's roof where I can walk out and stare blankly across the building tops and breathe in the air that reminds me of where I am and how lucky I am to have gotten here.
So today, after consulting with Adriana, I laid out my project plan. She was so helpful in bouncing ideas off of and for getting some input into what I've been throwing around in my head. She helped me form a clear direction! I am going to make 3 wearable art pieces. All using natural and ephemeral fibers. Some of the materials I will use include: tea, tea bags, leaves, petals, antique text and/or maps, fabric, burlap... I will include more detail as to the construction of the pieces, but you'll have to wait! Today I was able to acquire the tea bags. Tomorrow I am getting a dress form, sewing machine, and fabrics! We'll see about the leaves - its Spring here so the leaves are bright green and attached to their tress! I like using materials that are temporary, that show a footprint, that tell a story that already existed before I altered it with my hands. I like showing the fragility in things, in life, in all we get involved in and are part of. Also, how beneath all of that fragility there is strength; a frame and form keeping it all together. I am excited to see what happens!
Thanks again all! You made this happen.
I will keep you posted!