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.’

Pareidolia – Opening TONIGHT! 5p-8p @ Gordy Fine Art and Framing!

Pareidolia – Opening TONIGHT! 5p-8p @ Gordy Fine Art and Framing!

What are you doing tonight?

If your answer is anything other than ‘Checking out the awesome artwork Muncie has to offer at its First Thursday event, including Drawing Practice + Pareidolia at Gordy Fine Art and Framing‘ you are sorely mistaken.

A preview:

Pareidolia9

 

Pareidolia is the psychological phenomenon of finding significance in random visual stimuli. The most common examples of this are finding images in clouds, seeing faces in kitchen appliances and Rorschach ink blots. As humans, we want to find meaning in the seemingly random chaos that surrounds us. It’s why we study history, it’s why we feel cheated when fictional stories ‘don’t make sense’- we want to believe there are rules and, by extension, that by playing by these rules we can take control of what is ultimately uncontrollable- namely the Universe.
See you tonight!

 

 

It was a muddy and gloomy evening…

It was a muddy and gloomy evening…

Spring is here!
The 20th has come and gone, and winter is finally over. Between harvesting new spring greens and tending to my indoor seedlings and planning picnics, I’ve just been filled with springtime joy! The fresh scent of jonquils and new leaves is carried on a breeze that is brisk but mellowed with the first warmth of the new season, through my open kitchen window. Outside, baby ducks and rabbits frolic in a bucolic bacchanal of fuzz and fluff and too big eyes.

If you listen very closely, you can almost hear a chorus of baby lambs singing the Hallelujah Chorus.

If you listen very closely, you can almost hear a chorus of baby lambs singing the Hallelujah Chorus.

If you’ve read this blog for more than 5 minutes you know a) that I am in the Midwest and thus b) dripping with sarcasm. The truth is, despite what Martha and Pinterest and the rest of the internet is telling me, the current season is one that isn’t a season at all. It feels like it shouldn’t be winter. The days are longer, there’s a strange and firey ball of light in the sky, Easter candy abounds and yesterday I counted approximately 177 robins in our front yard. It’s definitely not SPRING- there’s a Winter Weather advisory in effect and while a few unwise blubs have started sending up green stuff through the sea of mud, all the tips have been frost burnt.
When I am feeling cheerful, I call this current state of being ‘The Mudglooms.’

Having spent the better part of the week bitching about our lack of spring like it’s my job, I’ve decided to take this transitory state in stride. Sure, every formerly grassy then snowy area has been replaced with mud- Sure, going for a run requires more layers of spandex than I feel comfortable disclosing- Sure, it seems like everyone (including yours truly) has spent the past 5 months perfecting their snarls- At the same time, though, all these gloomy skies and biting winds put one in the perfect mood for tea and rumination but without the utter despair that comes from the deep heart of winter. Having the nearness of spring so close to the current desolation seems almost supernatural. I’ll say this for the Mudglooms- they’re a great time for reading books about villages on moors. And looking at art like this:

Figure 2 by Agnes Martin

THE KITCHEN V Carrying the Milk by Marina Abramovic

Exploded View Birds by Jim Campbell.
Click HERE or HERE to see this piece in action. Awesome.

The Argument With Spring by Jessica Tremp

a drawing by Eva Hesse

Heart Branches by Anne Siems

from Bloom by Anna Schuleit

Robert Montgomery

Robert Mongomery is right- Winter can’t last forever. Let us savor this liminal state- Three cheers for sunglasses+beanies! A round of hurrahs for the extension of hot cocoa season!

Home Sweet Hermitage

Home Sweet Hermitage
CLynch 2012

snowday shut-in, Cat Lynch, acrylic/mixed media, 2012

Well what do you know, I not only managed to complete one last daily-practice-piece before 2013, I even managed to finish before the weekend (because technically, 11:50 on Friday is still a weekday).

This piece kind of went back and forth for me- every NextThing I did to it made me either love it or hate it. Currently don’t feel either at the moment, but I guess that’s sort of the point of practicing daily, right? It’s not always going to be something I want to frame and will to my progeny.

Snow Schlow Mow Day.

Snow Schlow Mow Day.
CLynch 2012

‘ends and beginings’ Cat Lynch, acrylic and graphite, 2012

Another of my ‘weekday’ endeavors, though I bent the rules a bit and finished it over the weekend at my parents’ house. Given the way I usually work, and the proximity I am to the end of my book, this will probably be the last drawing of 2012. Fitting, then that it’s a drawing of a butt.

In related book-finishing, drawing-making news, it is SNOWPOCALYPSE. After bad-mouthing the mildness of Ohio winters for three years, she’s finally calling my bluff. Outside is a beautiful, wintry wonderland and zero reason to leave the house.

Stay warm!

A Stitch in Time.

A Stitch in Time.

A few weeks ago I got to hear an artist talk by the talented performance artist, Coco Loupe that was everything you want an artist talk to be; interesting, inspiring, humbling and reassuring all in one. In it, she mentioned her ‘daily practice’ which really struck a chord with me- Most of my current projects are either long-term, collaborative, wrapped up in about 12 layers of CONCEPT or some combination of the three. While it’s all work I’m really excited about, I’ve been having a hard time the past couple of weeks maintaining momentum. I think my own lack of ‘daily practice for the sake of daily practice’ is the culprit.* It’s like playing an instrument or running- warm-ups take more than zero minutes and they certainly aren’t interesting, but they do make a world of difference, especially, in the case or running, in longevity.

All of which is to say that the night before I succeeded in living for a quarter of a century found me with a 1987 planner passed on to me by another talented woman I admire, and a longing to just make something pretty. Or, not even pretty- just to make something barely beyond the realm of doodlery for no other reason other than “it feels good.”

CLynch 2012

‘a stitch in time’ Cat Lynch, mixed media/

Why a timezone map? Because the lines made by the zones were interesting and the colors pretty. Why cut them out? Because Sunday I wanted to cut something up. Why weaving, why sewing? Because the rest of the week I felt like putting something back together. And I wanted to make art while watching ParaNorman.

Of course, because I’m still me, this is merely the beginning of a series, and of course there are Rules;

-They will be small
-They will be arbitrary
-I will only work on them during the week/evenings and save weekends for working on bigger and better things
-I will not be upset at how they look in the end.

Another idea came up during Coco’s amazing artist talk- the idea that one must make lots of crap to make things that aren’t crap. I believe one artist present mentioned a “10% rule”? (Meaning that for every 10 things she makes, maybe one will be good). By that logic, there’s a chance that, should I continue to stick with this, by this time next year I’ll have 5 good drawings.
That ain’t bad.

 

 

*well, that and the fact that it’s Christmas time and I have a mental age of 10.

Upcoming Show – Outside/In at Open Door

Upcoming Show – Outside/In at Open Door

Do you live in or around the greater Columbus area?
Do you love Outsider Art?
Do you love me?

If the answer to any of these questions is ‘yes’ or even ‘maybe’, then you should come to

Outside/In; an exploration of accessible studios in Ohio

curated by yours truly.

Outside/In will feature work from several progressive art studios throughout Ohio. Over the past several months we (meaning myself and the awesome people I work with) roamed about Ohio, visiting other studios, geeking out over all the visual treats we found, and facing the impossible task of choosing only a handful of pieces to bring back with us. The result is a show that is going to be awesome (because how could it not be with so much good stuff)

With this exhibit we hope to build partnerships, explore art as a tool for advocacy, and celebrate all the amazing things happening in the world of Outsider Art in Ohio. Ohio is paving the way for creating an arts landscape that does not relegate Outsider Art to the periphery, but instead lets it come right on IN!

Opening reception
Saturday, August 11, from 5pm until 7pm
1050 Goodale Boulevard, Columbus, Ohio.

Check out Open Door’s blog for more information (and a super sneak peak), and don’t forget to check out Open Door itself before then to catch the final days ofFigurative Language, curated by the wonderful Allison Buenger!