Last winter I worked on a proposal for the new state library/archives/museum with the amazing glass fabrication company Mayer of Munich. We weren’t successful in landing the project, but the experience of working through the process was definitely a success. When I heard that their New York representative Erica Behrens was coming to Anchorage to give a talk at the museum and meet with artists, I had to make the trip south.
I didn’t want to make another 700 mile trip later in the season, so I hustled and got my Clare House commission done so that I could deliver it at the same time. Above is a detail of two of the three 11″x 7′ basswood panels. I hope to get a real photographer into the site once it is installed to get some good photos of the whole piece.
I wasn’t in Anchorage for long, but I came away informed, encouraged, and excited about future possibilities. Part of what brought Erica to Anchorage was the installation of a big mosaic mural at the Anchorage fish hatchery, designed by Pat Shelton and fabricated by Mayer of Munich. I got to sneak in and peer around the scaffolding to get a look at it. Pat’s images are based on fishing lures, a smart proposal for a sportfish hatchery.
I guess the “revelations” part of the title of the post was this – I have never applied for public art proposals outside of the state. I’ve never been sure if I could compete, or if selected, how to handle the logistics from this great of a distance. Competition remains what it is, but working with a fabricator would erase nearly all of the logistical hurdles. Sometimes you just need someone to point out the obvious.
Back at home, winter is definitely on the way. I ran the somewhat snowy but gloriously beautiful Equinox Marathon on Saturday. I did most of the race with the Blechman sisters, fun company to be sure. (And as one is a nurse and one a doctor, smart company on a long and occasionally slippery run! I felt very safe.)
In the studio, I’m carving away at the Murie Building project, rock by rock. I’ve got a few solid weeks to make tracks before heading off to for a school project in Kodiak in October. Some serious juggling starts soon, but I get this week to focus on just one thing.
Also, the house got a change of face – I won’t call it a facelift, as it has not helped aesthetics at all – but the front porch has turned into a temporary wood shop for the winter. Though there are definitely some challenges that come with living in an unfinished structure, it IS nice to be able to turn it into whatever you need it to be at the time. This is where the woodworking part of the Rasmuson project grant will happen. The view from the front windows leaves something to be desired, but I really should be in the studio instead of complaining.
And last, I am so happy to report that all five beloved members of Team Couch will go into the winter healthy. We now have two dogs at ten and two at nine, so every season we get with everybody intact from here on out is a gift. (Two year old spitfire Dora is a whole other story. . . ) The distances may get shorter and the speeds slower, but I think we’ll still have another good skijoring winter for all concerned.