Wednesday, September 30, 2020

Pushing away from the status quo

I'm still not sure how I'm going to keep myself from sliding back into the status quo of inequality, turning the other way, choosing the easy but complicit choices. I'm curious to see what people in craft think about it.
In my insular world, the studio is creeping along. But the floors are done, which means everything else can go in. If only we could have given the contractor the orders in July when he asked for them before I left town, instead of today. Once everything arrives, it should take two weeks to finish (who knows how long inspections after that take before I can occupy). But due to the c r a z e in construction and renovation, everything seems to be backordered. Each year I think this space will get done in that year, and I've been disappointed for almost three years running. Please let it be 2020! But more importantly for people living in the U.S.: please be counted in the census!
In the ongoing saga of my insular world at home, I went to the huge lovely garden store to get REAL topsoil to go on top of the clay and rocks that my lawn guy put down a couple weeks ago (I fired him but I still have rocks and clay in my lawn), and more grass seed to spot treat. When I did those spots, I realized how much extra work I just made for myself so I didn't go as wild with the soil and seed as I had initially imagined. Owning a lawn is still a huge learning curve for me.
I saw this hilarious sign (DOGS 2020: BECAUSE HUMANS SUCK) on a street that has been blocked for months due to massive utility work along the entire road. After I finally got over my fear of being attacked for looking Asian during pandemic, I walked outside of my house and explored the weird non-grid streets near me. This one is one of the curved roads where my heart jumped to see a big red IMPEACH sign on the lawn. I had always thought my neighborhood was full of polite but scary folks who simply 'tolerated' my existence but would call me 'oriental' to my face and ching-chong me behind my back. That sign made me feel less afraid (though across the street was another lawn sign for a church. Maybe they cancel each other out). In that regard, please if you are American make sure you are registered to vote and have a voting plan in place!
This was today's batch of bricks. I know, I said I'd NEVER make another brick in my life. But these are really, really desperate times so it's nice to fall back on something I know how to do. It's also nice to reap the benefits of being an excellent student: I kept copious, detailed notes in 2006 about every day of my thesis production. What kind of fiber, how long it was soaked and beaten, what the best angle was for my 3-part molds, etc. I wish I could say I was taking those notes now but I'm in my 40s and not my 20s so that energy goes towards cooking my meals while I prepare for this show.
This was last night's batch. Yes, I know that is the most ridiculous tiny fan but it's what I have right now (I have a more powerful fan but it's for summer and already stored, plus it would be too powerful for this job. I need drying speeds to be done in a day but not too quickly).
This morning I released last night's batch from their molds. I letter the molds to keep track of which goes with which. My miter saw blade got weird on me yesterday so I stopped just short of the end of the alphabet, at W. It's just as well, because doing 20-something sheets/bricks a day is a reasonable ask. In 2006, I did 80 to 160 a day depending on my energy levels and how fast the first batch dried.
This first batch brought back a LOT of memories of all of my technical issues. They never go away, but are problems I can deal with on my own. Unlike the unnecessary stress (and financial repercussions) that this area went through hosting that ridiculous 'debate' last night. I ventured down near there today to pick up milkweed pods offered to me earlier this week and am soothed by Sarah's milkweed journey.
I'm hoping for 150 to 200 by the end, unlike my 2,000+ the first time I did this. Again, the temperance of age! Also, I have a LOT of other things to do (like process a billion milkweed pods), unlike my thesis semester when I cleared the decks of extraneous jobs and relationships to be in production from the end of January to the show opening in April. Even though plenty of friends I had then have fallen away, I am so thankful to the ones that are still here for me to this day.

1 comment:

Velma Bolyard said...

the sign!
the bricks!
the milkweed!