I see it’s been nearly a month since I posted anything here. A short recap of recent events:
Things got worse before they got better. The deep freeze seemed to go on and on, and everyone seems to agree that the weather this year was harder to take than usual. I was happy to be really busy during the worst of it with the first half of a four week Artist in the Schools residency at Nordale Elementary here in Fairbanks.
We’re working on a set of mosaic panels based on student drawings of the four seasons. Fall and winter are now complete, and when I return in April the other half of the school will tackle spring and summer (and grouting, which is much better to do outside. . ) This has been one of my favorite schools to work with – really supportive teachers and staff and GREAT kids. It was tough for the students to be cooped up indoors as much as they were. Public schools have a -20 cutoff for outdoor recess, and nearly all of January was below the line.
As this project wound up, the weather let up. Temperatures have been well above zero for the last couple of weeks, resulting in a frenzy of time outdoors. Pete (the dog) and I skied in to join friends from Denali Park for a mid week trip into Tolovana Hot springs, possibly my favorite winter destination. Someone had left a stash of recent “People” and “US” magazines and we all caught up on the lifestyles of the stars before soaking under the real stars and a full moon.
Now it’s a matter of balancing work and play. I have a pile of applications on my desk for residencies, grants and shows. The big (and nerve-wracking) news here is that I’m a finalist for two substantial sites through the state’s 1% for art program. I’ve got a little over a month to put my best ideas on paper, then who knows how long of sitting back and holding my breath. It’s an exercise in not getting attached. I’ve been in this position before, and my success rate after reaching the final round is about 50/50. In order to do a good job on a proposal, you do have to fall for it – just not so much that you’ll be crushed if it goes to someone else. It is hard not to think about what a difference either of these would make in my next year, but I’m trying to proceed as if nothing will come through.
Meantime, I’m making some “normal-sized” art for various purposes and enjoying the softer side of winter. Here are some new panels on my spray table, getting their final touches.