Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Somewhat frustrated.

I was trying really hard to be more positive. Today started out fine, kind of. I had horrible nightmares about missing my flight to Japan, and then realizing once I got on the plane that I also forgot to buy maple syrup for my hosts. Then I woke up at 9:50am, tore out of my room to get washed up, tore out of the house, ran to my studio, and caught my breath to have a 10am crit. That was nice. Susan was super chill and she already had heard about my thesis, so I showed that to her, and then we talked about websites and technology and then we looked some at my work. I realize the crits are really just chances for me to talk my shit out, and then I get a better sense of what my process is. This is Roko's studio. She's AMAZING. I wish I had a car, and I'd sooooo buy her sculptures and take them home. She does these fantastical creatures out of wood, painted in oils, and installed in all sorts of environments. She brought that chainsaw in the back from Japan. These are all butternut logs that she's carving. The shavings are like styrofoam.

Turns out that Laura's birthday is this Sunday, and she was born in the year of the monkey. So I looked up some monkey images and then did this sketch, on which I based a papercut (next image). We might have a little party. I think a day trip to Montreal would be nice, too. Talking to Ching-In today, I found out that HER bday is this Thursday. So I have to get on that. She's on the cusp of snake/horse. After crit, I went to get some fruit and found mail for me! YAY!! Gili, Elizabeth, and Kiwon sent stuff and I was so, so happy. I spent my post-lunch time on return mail and making mobiles. When I got sleepy, I went out to visit Roko's studio to pick up some postcards, and then went upstairs to say hi to Chih-Fen and look at the space I want to build out for a performance. I suddenly want to run over and ask Roko to save all of her wood shavings so I can pour them all over the floor. I realized while watching Art:21 that I have to use light to deal with that space. I don't have time/ patience/ funds to paint that room or cover it in fabric. So I'll just use low, directed lighting. Do you like how I'm pretending to be a lighting designer?

I also stopped again at Roo's to get some snacks, and had a long talk w/the owner again b/c he had looked at my website and was also quite impressed by my thesis. It's so funny to me, b/c I still feel so removed from the whole thing. I came back and made Laura's bday papercut, and a papercut for Roko, all while Chrissy talked about how nice I was to do things for other people. I realized that it just makes me really happy, and that I miss it. I wish I could do a little bit of that every day. It helps a lot. I also wonder if I should try and market myself as someone who does space solutions. Like, feng shui but not really. Just go into a space, move around furniture, and make some art that works. That's how I felt as I made more mobiles.

Then I had a yucky dinner b/c somehow I got into a conversation w/two writers about why I'm not having a good time here and it led to them asking me very specifically why, and exactly what forms of discrimination I claim to have experienced, and so on. I just got so tired of it and finally just stopped explaining, saying that I was tired of being in the position of always explaining to people what my experience as a woman of color in America is like, when it's pointless b/c I'm talking to white people who will never, ever understand. I felt a little bad about having to go there, but I just was so, so tired of it. I got the usual, "just don't let it get to you, have it roll off your back" comments, which make me crazy, b/c I can't do that when I am directly confronted w/accusations. The best part was that the person who told me to not let it bother me was someone who accused me of being burqa person.

So, now my hands are all cold and I am bummed out again. I'm not sure if I'll keep working or what. Oh, but this is for Ellie: images of snow and scenery around here. I miss you! I can't wait to get back to a phone to connect to you and all my other good friends who GET me.

1 comment:

Gili Warsett said...

yes yes!! use my apartment as your portfolio example and make it look nice. pretty please!!! i was just saying to my sister how i wished my books were organized and that if you were here, you'd do it, or you'd tell me to do it and then i'd do it. well, somehow i was inspired and started organizing them by subject and even made two sections for my favorite books.
yes! you seem so much happier when you're making things for people. it's kind of interactive. you know a person in certain ways and then you make art based on what you know. you have a real talent for this. and to restate my favorite mantra of the day: don't undermine yourself.