Wednesday, September 03, 2008

It's almost over

Two more days of class!!!!! And then onto another uncertain chunk of time here, but one with half the contact hours for language study. Wohoo! I got my library card today w/JL so now I have borrowing privileges at Yonsei. That is a big relief. The guy who processed it was super nice and said that I spoke Korean really well and that it was wonderful that I could do that as well as speak fluent English. It was nice to hear that; kind of exactly what I needed right now.

I've been corresponding with Velma Bolyard, who found me online. We started out talking about shifu and knitting since we're both papermakers who love working with it as a textile and love knitting. It has been really nice to have that outlet to just talk about my work, and my thoughts around it, and all the other stuff that comes up in those discussions. She lives on a farm, and we all know how much I love farms. It's also funny to see who comes up in your life and at what moments. I know that it's really hard to have instincts about people who you only meet online, but I feel like she's a good, true soul, and that having this communication won't harm me. Which is really needed in a time where I am feeling wary of people that I meet, not sure of what motives and agendas are waiting to snag me and reel me in.

So, in the usual spirit of being too tired, I'm going to cheat and end with part of the latest email I just sent to Velma, edited a little for all y'all:
Today on the bus home I was thinking about how art and science fit together. I got offered a science scholarship to University of Rochester when I was in high school and I turned it down but thought it was ridiculous that they even offered it to me b/c I was NOT a science person. I did well in all my classes, but I wasn't passionate about it. However, there are aspects of science both in topics and in techniques that I really love. But our educational system doesn't let us just pick and choose the things we like in each subject and combine them. They expect you to embrace ONE thing and just go for broke.

I was thinking, there is SO much experimenting that goes into making my art, which seems more obvious once I started papermaking since it involves so much science in the first place. But also, the whole process of figuring out how one ink will print w/one press on one piece of paper that has been pulled and spun and knit in one way, versus the same thing while just changing one variable and then the next...turns into endless permutations! Which at first seems horrid to me b/c I fear there will be no end to the experimenting - "when do I get to the ART?" - but in the end I guess that IS the art. And that is the way I need to make it: a structure within which to play, a freedom within parameters.

You can easily compare artistic breakthroughs w/scientific ones like penicillin: all serendipity! All random mistakes coming out of lots of labor. But those gems only come when you turn your back for a moment, let down your guard, or take a break.

1 comment:

  1. ellie9:42 AM

    remember when you come from the place of loving kindness- no one will snag you or reel you in. that is loving kindness toward YOURSELF and others... heart chakra. and create your boundaries out of love and it might feel eaiser like with the farm woman on the other side of the earth. i wish we were in a cafe in norway right now. eating chocolate cake!!!!

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