navel gazing as personal reflective processing.

As stated many times in many contexts, I have a complete inability to sit, rest, do nothing and be. This is why i love yoga and hate meditation. So- what to do when faced with with no big projects to pursue and a lack of inspiration? I just keep churning the wheels with arbitrary art-assignments and half-baked solo endeavors. I might just be moving in circles, but at least I’m moving. These usually involve long hours of tedious repetition, leaving me plenty of time and space to listen to radio shows, then music, and eventually new ideas. Once that happens these things, to which I’m never too attached, fall by the wayside. Sometimes they come back, sometimes they evolve or feed into something else, and sometimes they just disappear forever. Below are a few examples from the past year or so. Though usually uninteresting and always unfinished, these little stopgaps are incredibly helpful and, I’m only just starting to realize, an important part of how I make things:

A thorough, deliberate and ritualized destruction of a beloved anatomy book.

A thorough, deliberate and ritualized destruction of a beloved anatomy book.

Abandoned for now- the project as initially conceived is way too convoluted and internal to be interesting to me for as long as it needs to finish or to be interesting to anyone else.

A holdover from my first Postcard Collective exchange- still working to interpret Chris Toalson's 10 'photo' prompts.

A holdover from my first Postcard Collective exchange- still working to interpret Chris Toalson’s 10 ‘photo’ prompts.

Currently discontinued from lack of ideas/interest, but not totally abandoned out of guilt about not responding to Chris’s prompts. Creating interactions and exchanges is hard and when another artist tries to facilitate them, not responding makes me feel like an asshole. I also worry about karmic retribution.

A cataloging of every apron worn by the female characters of Mad Men, inspired by textile patterns, midcentury class/gender-roles as expressed through clothes, and a desire to turn the impulse to watch Mad Men into an art project.

A cataloging of every apron worn by the female characters of Mad Men, inspired by textile patterns, midcentury class/gender-roles as expressed through clothes, and a desire to turn the impulse to watch Mad Men into an art project.

Totally abandoned.

from the Encyclopedia Apocalyptica, a series of numerological historiographs exploring personal fears and the book of Revelations

from the Encyclopedia Apocalyptica, a series of numerological historiographs exploring personal fears and the book of Revelations.

…Eh? Still into this idea and really like how the first (of 22) finished pieces looks aesthetically, however, like the first, it’s super internal/personal and like all ‘product’ producing projects, I have a hard time staying motivated- if there’s no room/plan for interaction and no plan to display, what’s the point?

The most recent stopgap - thinking about plants and  ecologies and connecting those interests to my long standing interests in viscera and sewing paper.

The most recent stopgap – thinking about plants and ecologies and connecting those interests to my long standing interests in viscera and sewing paper.

Ditto to the above. I’m not totally scrapping this idea, but without a real ‘what’s next’ beyond the image itself I have a hard time coming up with a motivating ‘why.’

Super Massive Website Update (and other changes around here)

Super Massive Website Update (and other changes around here)
Cosmika performance

click the image to find out more about these sensual spacebabez.

Website updated! Website updated! Curious about what I was doing the later half of 2013? Go check it out. If there’s one lesson I can take away from 2013 it’s to either document as I go or to save up 20 episodes of This American Life for the two times a year I do update everything. (On a related note- any recommendations for a good, streaming radio program one could listen to while doing such tedius tasks as website updating, dishes doing or rug making? I’ve just about exhausted the TAL and RadioLab archives.)

You also may have noticed, if you’ve been here before, that things have changed around here as well- In an effort to simplify and clean everything up a bit, I went ahead and deleted the pages that were serving as a makeshift portfolio in years past. Looking for art? Click on the links above or go to www.catlynch.com- that’s where it’s all going to live from now on.

I’ve also changed up the header and tagline to be a bit more intentionally generic. After the few weeks of private and public existential crises, I’ve decided 2014 will be a year of experimentation here- instead of trying to figure out what this strange nook of internet is for RightNow, I’m going to give myself permission to not give a shit about what I give a shit about this year. My only goal is to write, and to write often. Both online and off, for the past six months I’ve felt the ever suffocating weight of writer’s block- in large part because the longer I wait to write anything, the more loaded and precious it feels like the next thing has to be. So forget that- good writing, bad writing, relevant and global, inward and navel gazing- nonfiction, fiction, a grey area between the two- funny writing, sad writing, absolutely vanilla writing-  reviews, how to’s and interviews- writing I’m proud of and total crapola.

And now, the semi-regular New Year’s nod to Miss O’Hara.

ONWARD!

Hello old friend [existential crises], hello.

Hello old friend [existential crises], hello.

Hey!
Hi- did you miss me?

I missed you.

It’s been a full couple of months- Not ‘crazy busy’ or even ‘crazy’ or ‘busy’, just full. Full of studio nights, full of cooking and takeout, full of work- work that was dull and work that was thrilling, full of thinking, full of doing, full of the beautiful give and take needed to exist as a human in a world with other humans.

Screen shot 2013-12-22 at 5.09.18 PM

full of cats.

I won’t lie to you- there were times when I was too busy to write, but more often than not the silence was intentional. It wasn’t personal, I just needed time to put my brain in order and figure out just what it is I’m doing here. When I first started this blog I had the idea that it would serve as a portfolio of sorts. It’s meandered since then, focusing on everything from the intensely personal to attempts at being objective and universally relevant- the only real constant being my compulsion to Keep Writing Things Here. A couple of times I’ve attempted to refocus on the art, but then, last year I found a website host whose price and interface fill my heart with cupcakes. Now I have a shiny professsssional website* where I can show my work, without any references to my social sweating, but which requires time and upkeep to make it relevant. And then, of course, there comes the question of redundancy- If I’m writing about my work over there, do I really need to write about it at length over here ? How much CATLYNCH does the internet really need? And if it’s redundant, then can I stop feeling guilty about tangential and self-indulgent posts here? But I still feel this commitment/compulsion to keep writing, and what do I write about if not this thing [art], around which I’ve built so much of my identity? What is the sound of one hand clapping?!
This, I think, is really why sitting down to write here has been an exercise in cognitive dissonance and why this year in particular it’s floundered. Screen shot 2013-12-22 at 5.35.09 PM

So it’s time for a change. I’m not sure in what direction, but a change is a-comin.
But first, thank-you – whether this is your first visit or the 306th post to come to your inbox, thank-you for being here, for reading, for caring, for giving this small corner of the internet a reason to exist. Speaking of which,

what do you want to see here?

Seriously, what keeps you coming back? What would you find interesting or relevant?

Writing and pictures about plants and growing things? Food? Stories of social awkwardness? Professional musings about education, imagination and emergent curricula? Socio-political soapboxing through the lens of feminism? Or maybe you prefer to get something out of this page- how-to’s, recipes, crafts, TASTY KNOWLEDGE? Truly, let me know what gets you jazzed- the only thing not up for negotiation is cats.

There will always be cats.

Screen shot 2013-12-22 at 6.08.23 PM

 

 

 

*MASSIVE update there, coming soon

“The shortest day has passed…*”

“The shortest day has passed…*”
My mother, making the necessary, traditional cinnamon rolls Christmas Eve.

My mother, making the necessary, traditional cinnamon rolls Christmas Eve.

CLynch 2012

G.

Clynch 2012

G’s favorite way to spend evenings…and mornings….and afternoons.

Newt, in a rare moment of stillness.

Newt, in a rare moment of stillness.

CLynch2012

Snowstorm as seen from inside a tiny, warm kitchen.

CLynch 2012

mint, jade and onions – enjoying a bit of sun

A wonderful, love-filled Christmas and a blissfully quiet and Schwarzenegger-filled New Year’s Eve.

Despite all my outward protestations that New Year’s is ‘just another day’ and ‘barely a real holiday’, every year I get pulled into the list-making, vow-taking optimism that comes with a new calendar year. I have no logical reason to believe that a 3 where there was a 2 will suddenly transform me into a new being that Dresses Smartly! and Cooks Dinner on Weeknights Regularly! and Balances a Rich Creative Life with Social Outings! and yet I still find myself some time in the early days of January declaring that this is the year I become more/less ____.

In the spirit of my hilarious friend, Sharon, this year I’m trying to keep it a bit ‘mo’ real';

  • focus less on things like ‘becoming famous’ and ‘getting into shows’ and focus more on making art.
  • this I will do by cultivating a daily art practice and following through on current projects before starting new ones.
  • learn to cook more ‘intuitively‘.
  • run 2 half-marathons (one in spring and one in fall)
  • drink more water each day than I do coffee (because drinking nothing but coffee and wine in a 24 hr period can’t be great for my kidneys)

ONWARD!

CLynch2012

been eating an unreasonable amount of citrus and apologizing to no one.

*”The shortest day has passed, and whatever nastiness of weather we may look forward to in January and February, at least we notice that the days are getting longer.  Minute by minute they lengthen out.  It takes some weeks before we become aware of the change.  It is imperceptible even as the growth of a child, as you watch it day by day, until the moment comes when with a start of delighted surprise we realize that we can stay out of doors in a twilight lasting for another quarter of a precious hour.”
–  Vita Sackville-West

Tedious Tuesday Top or Bottom.

Tedious Tuesday Top or Bottom.

Damn this week was long.

So long that this morning, I had a sudden panic that I missed last week’s top or bottom, because it felt like I had written last week’s two weeks ago.

So long that Friday’s awesometime devolved into showing the artists pictures of catbreading.

So long that when I look at these pieces of art I feel like I’m in my own mind.

 

Mountain by Agnes Martin, ink and pencil on paper, 1960
via.

VS.

Untitled by Jill Sylvia, handcut ledger paper, 2009
via.