Monday, December 30, 2013

Get Ready to RUMBLE

Spitfire. That's the title of my new series....the series I have been hesitant to create. I'm going to still gloss over what it's about, but along with the hint in the title, I'll give you a few of my recent musical influences. One newish, one oldish (beyond Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds, which is an 'always'...those sick, twisted geniuses).

I like the feel of this song, I like the bass...

I have also been listening to this old Prodigy song...a bit more frantic than the other, and I have always enjoyed the visuals on this one. I wanna kick some asses after watching. Also, *yoink* thanks for the title, dudes...

The main point about this series is that it has to be powerful, that the imagery isn't somehow weaker than the message. I don't know that I've ever made 'weak' imagery before, but there's a first time for everything. So without further ado, I'm ready to rumble.

More on this series later, IN THE NEW YEAR!
Have a good one, cheers.

Saturday, December 14, 2013

Good Times, All Around

I was meaning to get to Maryland Art Place (MAP) last night, but I got so caught up at MICA and all the exhibitions they had opening. Super good stuff, super "Baltimore". I saw Picture Windows: The Painted Screens of Baltimore and Beyond, The Amazing Johnny Eck and Life Interpreted & Home at Last by Colette Veasey-Cullors. Colette invited me to be a guest artist in her Foundations class in 2012 while I was attending MICA for grad school, so it was cool to talk to her and see her work.

In the meantime, last night or this morning before I arrived at MAP, my work sold! That's tremendous, because I really needed to buy some paint and I don't buy new art supplies unless I sell work. As you can imagine, I am a bit more motivated to sell my work than I normally am when I need new art stuff. I went halvsies on the sale...and I feel good about my small donation contributing to their art programming this coming year as well. Good times, all around!

They had these really nice bios under each of the pieces and the red festive bow signified a sale. And even though many of the pieces were gone by the time I arrived, there were little photocopied images in their place, so everyone could see what they were missing. This was a culmination of several 'nice touches' at MAP's Under $500. It was a very nice, full show, I left wanting a few of the pricier pieces, myself.

Saturday, December 7, 2013

Art: Fast and Furious on a Thursday

On Thursday I had a whirlwind of a day. Hard to be in three places at once, but I managed two of them! I managed two exhibitions, 45 minutes apart within two hours....somehow. The first was the Student Art Invitational at HCC in Columbia, Maryland. I had four students in the show this semester and I got photos with three of them! Here is us and their exemplary work!

Ingrid Nuttle, "Giractus"

  Belle Eunjong Ko, "Pineapple-hedgehog"

Lindsay D'Andelet, "Merging"


Joel LaFerriere, "Untitled"

Joel's work had many admirers! Photo of a photo-taker!

AND THEN, if that wasn't exciting enough, I drove back to Baltimore for Jubilee Arts' "Deck The Walls", where I had several pieces in the show, which I donated. When I got there, I realized that my work was right above that of Fletcher Mackey, one of the brilliant Community Arts faculty at MICA. So I got to show my work right above one of my past professors! I have been in exhibitions with my past professors a few times, but I've never been this close. Delightful! Here's the proof...

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Bake Me A Cake...

...a cake made with money, and filled with creamy art-awesomeness. The Baker Artist Awards happen every year for Baltimore's finest and often most interesting artists, and every year we artists can re-activate our profiles and get that shot. True, it is a shot in the dark, but still, one day.

So with that being said, here's my nomination for the 2014 Baker Artist Awards!

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Deck the Walls

Jubilee Arts in Baltimore is having a one-of-a-kind art sale coming up Thursday, December 5th! I have donated a few of my row house pieces, and you should see me there (although there is a student show in Columbia at the same time, so I somehow have to make it to both). Be sure to buy some tickets and support your local professional artists and artists-to-be. Your art purchases will help Jubilee Arts continue their arts programming! For tickets, click here.

In other news, my youth class at the Creative Alliance is about to finish up their semester, so it's almost exhibition time. And that means it's also brochure time!

Thursday, November 7, 2013

'Under $500' at MAP

Huzzah! I will be a part of a new group exhibition at Maryland Art Place in Baltimore, coming up in Friday, December 13th, starting at 7p. Be sure to buy tickets for Under $500.

And this is my piece that will show, Painted Ladies I...

  It's good people-watching at these types of swanky Baltimore functions. Let's hope the work sells!

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Oh! Also a Show!

I forgot because this was sprung on me at the last minute as of my pieces will be in The Highlandtown Arts District Association Exhibition, which runs October 26 through the Closing Reception on November 2, 530-730pm. I think Los Muertos will be in the Amelia Rothschild Gallery upstairs at the Creative's a multi-locale exhibition for people who live and work in Highlandtown (that's me, at the Creative Alliance!)

Anyway, this is a sort of bad photograph, but I had to pop one off all fast-like, early yesterday morning before the drop because I had altered it from it's original. This is a somewhat normal practice for me...the tweaks...however it means I sometimes have to shoot new photos of the work before it leaves the studio. Since I only had about 12 hours notice of the exhibition beforehand, it was a mad, mad morning; one with way too little light. I'll be sure to get a better photo at the exhibition. If it's installed today, I just might be able get the image while I'm at work this week.

But here's the crappy version until then:

Los Muertos
yarn, acrylic on canvas

Exhibition announcement:

Hope to see you there, Bmore!

New Images of New Work!

If you didn't catch it, I have uploaded images from my new series in progress, Contrary.


The images can be found on my website at this link, here:

I decided to make some very colorful landscapes, I needed that feeling of expansiveness after my recent burn-out...the wax and wane of artmaking. However, I ultimately enjoyed playing with the tissue paper and I slowly grew within the series. I think you can see a bit of the progression from start to finish. It's interesting to note, that in the end I used a reductive method. I seem to feel most comfortable destroying the art to then create what I need.

I think some of the first few had 'too much' (or 'not enough') going on for my liking...they were too bright, too foreign to come from my hand--but they did! Although I enjoyed playing with color and tearing strips of tissue paper, and gluing....the end results were not right. So I did go back and revise the first three after the fact, took some away, added some pencil lines or added more layers. The most important change to note, was that I also flipped most of them. I turned them so that they were oriented vertically rather than horizontally, which really activated the space a bit more, or at least made them much more energized and unexpected in my opinion.

At this point, it feels like a fairly cohesive series to me and I might start shopping around for some galleries. I could explore it more, but I'm anxious (nervous) to get into a new figurative set. I will be using some of the same techniques as are found in these newest landscapes. Words...words/text are sometimes difficult to integrate visually. That will seemingly be my main issue with the upcoming figurative set, but we'll just see. I'll also be thinking about transparency and layering, as seen in this current series.

Look for progress reports soon, and thanks for stopping in! Please check out the link to my website!

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

The Feminist Art Project - Baltimore

Hey all, as regional coordinator of The Feminist Art Project - Baltimore chapter, I'd like to announce that our first meeting is THIS Thursday, the 17th! I am fairly excited to see who shows up, and fairly nervous to run the first meeting. The details are below on this flier, if you'd like to join us. Please check us out, all are welcome. We'll be at City Arts in Baltimore for this first meet and greet...

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Settling In

Ah, the fading light of me that means school is IN session! I have had the first meeting for my youth literature-based art class, AND both of my 3D college classes have already started. I have been slowly getting back into the groove of educating and not just 'sitting'. I am also taking an online business class, so this weekend, and subsequent Wednesdays I will be devoted to this new professional endeavor.

In other very fine news, I am a new regional coordinator for The Feminist Art Project (TFAP)! I will be 'coordinating' the women artists of the Baltimore Chapter, although they already got it in spades. But I am still very excited about my new, challenging role. The main challenge here will be how to fund everything we want to do, as zero dollar budgets are 'fun' and 'interesting'. I guess I'll need to dust off my grant-writing skills, shoot y'all.

If you'd like more information on The Feminist Art Project - Baltimore Chapter or TFAP, in general, here are some handy links...

For TFAP Bmore, here is the link to the facebook page:
or find us on twitter at @TFAPbmore. Website/blog to follow soon!

The Feminist Art Project (TFAP) is an international collaborative initiative celebrating the Feminist Art Movement and the aesthetic, intellectual and political impact of women on the visual arts, art history, and art practice, past and present. The project is a strategic intervention against the ongoing erasure of women from the cultural record. TFAP promotes diverse feminist art events, education and publications through its website and online calendar and facilitates networking and regional program development throughout the world.

You can learn more about the organization and its initiatives by accessing TFAP's website here: 

Thursday, August 8, 2013


I just wanted to share a few photos of the great work the kids did this summer in the 22nd Century Pioneers program. Last year, I taught for the same program, but it was named something else...this year, they chose the name because we were all going to Mars (in our imaginations)! So I got to play around with all manner of awesome spacey concepts. I tell ya what, all of my years as an avid Star Trek/sci-fi fan really paid off. Thanks, Gene Rodenberry, and Joss Whedon (Firefly), and countless other visionaries of television! This one's for you...

Collaborative Mars Rovers made out of newspaper and tape only

Space helmets, yes! We need those for our trip!

Faux Stained Glass Planters. This was the first time they ever planted food!

A Terrarium I made, to illustrate a lesson on the Earth's Biomes

Engineering! The 5th grade science class built towers out of newspaper and limited tape. And look, it's as tall as they are!

Mars (Moon) Boots, gotta have those...especially ones with rocket boosters!


This my favorite shot that I took this summer...these are Star Boxes! They contain LED lights so at night they shine stars into their rooms.

This is the display of all the art-related work we did in the science class

Eeewwww, Alien Mold! (really watercolor on paper inside petri dishes)

Final display for the program...

 Planetary Mapping

Inflatable Space Alien!

All of this (and me) was inside a giant geodesic dome! (it was obviously really hot inside that damn thing, but it was still fun)

I love STE(A)M, I truly, truly do.

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Out / In the Loop

I'm back! I have some news! I will have more news in a few more days! I have been frantically earning a living for the past five weeks. It feels good to get semi-steady work though, or at least enough to pay the bills for the next half a year. Teaching pays when you know what you're doing ;)

In the meantime, One of my row house pieces was recently in the Creative Alliance's annual Big Show and, AND the piece sold! My co-worker and friend Leyla snapped this photo for me because I had not gotten to see it and the exhibition has already closed.

You know you're busy when you can't get to your own exhibition for the whole duration of the showing. Yikes, that feels awful...but the red dot surely does help!

Friday, June 28, 2013

All Up In It

This is what I've been up to lately...

I scored two jobs this summer, one college class, teaching Three Dimensional Art and Design again, and one with the Baltimore City Public Schools again (I was employed with the same program last summer). The gig with the kids is pretty sweet because it involves STEM-related arts programming, or as I like to refer to it, 'STEAM'. They are taking a trip to Mars (in their imaginations)! So for the next five weeks we will be preparing for our journey and creating a lot of models, maps and product prototypes. We will, as well, be growing a few know because of terraforming. I am having a lot of fun making the exemplars for them and kind of wish I was getting ready to go to Mars too...I'm seriously ready, in theory.

I have work in Creative Alliance's upcoming exhibition, The Big Show, an annual tradition for members (or like myself, employees). I'm still testing out the waters of Baltimore in terms of what sells and what doesn't. If it's attached to a good cause, like an auction or something, my work sells. No problem. Now to translate that to me, personally. I chose to submit a colorful row house piece because I noticed last year that the works which sold were Baltimore-related or themed. We shall see.

I also had an art sale / birthday party in June. I broke even...mainly because I wanted was my birthday! But I've learned a lot for next time. I also recently bought a large, round table for any workshops and classes I might want to host in the future. I got it for cheap, but it's a great, heavy brute of a table, so I'll most likely be lugging that thing around for the rest of my life.

If you'll remember, last month I was in an alumni exhibition at MICA (you can refer to the last few posts for the skinny on that)...well, that show was recently featured on Bmore Art and I even got a name and image drop out of it:


I neglected to mention on here, that I have kittens, as well! They are nearly 2 months old by now (currently doing their midnight run, "The Household 500"). The stray cat I intended to save from getting pregnant, was in fact, already pregnant. So close. So she at least had them once she was inside. I was lucky enough to get the whole birthing process on camera. Well, I missed seeing the first one, but only because it was 3:30am when she delivered him. I woke up to the sound of a baby crying and grabbed the camera as I was getting up. She had four fluffy buns in the corner of my bedroom, approximately two feet from the edge of my bed. I was privileged to witness it. And I'll say it here too...birth smells like a musky sunshine; really clean and elemental.

I'm telling you, this summer could not get any more optimistic. All signs are a go! Mercury (currently in retrograde) can just stuff it, for I have kittens.

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Some Good News

Found out at the exhibition reception that both of the pieces I submitted to the ACCR/MICA Art + Community exhibition and project have been claimed! These pieces will be going to two separate agencies in the area!

The piece on the top, Horizon, will be at Laurel Advocacy and Referral Services, Inc. "LARS is a non-proselytizing ecumenical ministry serving the Greater Laurel area by assisting homeless and low-income individuals and families who are experiencing crisis, providing both emergency and long-term services designed to promote self-sufficiency."

The bottom piece, Event Horizon will be at Loyola Clinical Centers. "Loyola Clinic Centers is a community based organization operating under the auspices of Loyola University Maryland, providing comprehensive education and training of graduate students in collaboration with academic departments across a variety of disciplines. The Clinical Centers are committed to the idea of social change in service to the community, the city, the nation, and the world, and dedicated to research and scholarship of issues that most affect the ability of people to develop, change, and lead meaningful lives."

Saw President, Fred Lazarus at the show, since it was all alumni...that's about the only person I knew, unfortunately. But it was a really great exhibition, full of some really great abstract pieces. I was happy to be included among the alumni represented and body of work shown. Thanks to The Art Connection in the Capital Region for organizing this great project!

Monday, June 3, 2013

ACCR/MICA: Art + Community

 I'm very excited that two of my watercolor and print pieces have been accepted into this project/exhibition! Opens June 11th, 5-7 pm in MICA's Decker Gallery. See you there!

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Same Time, Same Place

This is a re-post from a very long time ago, but I thought it was apt considering my back and forth with the advent of Mother's Day every year. Sometimes it's a non-issue, a non-day for me, just regular, and I don't tend to think about it. But some years, it is very challenging for me. I can feel that this is one of those years. For me, this is worth a was a moment of clarity for me about the importance of having a mom in life. It continues to be a source of clarity for me regarding loss.

1/5/09 10:07 AM
"If There Were a Tree"

The hyena almost made me have an episode of panic just a minute ago. The hyena. What am I talking about? Long story, here it goes.

When I was about 19 I had this 'friend', he was older, and I thought wiser, and he had had some of the same experiences in life that I had had. And although I was convinced he hated me more than half of the time, he still gave me some of the most profound things to think about. These things always involved our lack of a mother. In the same club, he and I. So there was that at least, I think he saw himself in me, to an extent...before his own fall. I digress, but let me give you a portion of my thesis paper that encapsulates my gist:

"Societies are much the same in the animal kingdom as well. I remember when I was 20, my friend whom had also lost his mother at a young age, relayed a story to me about a wild animal. In essence it is this: If an animal's mother is killed in the wild, that animal is now all alone in the world. The rest of his clan and his society will turn against him. It is because he no longer fits, and he is not the same. He is now an outcast.

My friend was using this story as an analogy for the two of us, and our shared pain. I have never forgotten it. It was such a powerful, miserable, all-consuming concept, that I will never forget it. He described perfectly for me the loss I had been feeling for years. I found a oneness with his experience, and that helped me to understand my society, my world, and my own experience. It hurt like hell to hear, but I knew he told me so that I could conceive of what I was up against. He was warning me about my own society."

OKAY. So we have that thought swimming around my head since I was 19...and then came the hyena. And I'm not even particularly fond of hyenas (I blame The Lion King) however, I found myself some years later watching a nature special about them.

While I was watching of course, the worst thing happened, like Bambi in real life. The mom hyena died, broke her back.....the little one watched her slowly die and then stayed by the tree where she lay dead for quite awhile...unsure and desperate and helpless.

She wandered out, and was attacked. Even though that young hyena was a part of that clan, once her mother had died, she no longer held a place in their world. She was not only an outcast, but was ATTACKED because her mother was dead. I watched in tear-stained horror as it only got worse.

Confused, sad, and alone, the tiny hyena then wandered into enemy territory and again, got attacked. (things were really starting to sink in for me at this point) It was the saddest thing I have ever watched, truthfully. This little helpless baby, wandering and alone in the world. Truly alone.

Then I watched the wounded (emotionally and otherwise) baby have no other choice but to go back to her dead mother's side. It was reported by the announcer that the hyena eventually starved to death, unmoved from that tree, nuzzled up next to her dead mother's body.

(You have no idea the amount of tears I am shedding now. It's freaking unreal.)

But the point I'm getting at is that I have to paint something with my mom again, because it helps. Based on the panic I have been experiencing lately, I need it, because I still feel helpless sometimes, and attacked by the world. If there were a tree, I would surely want to curl up next to it some days, so that I could at least die with someone who had loved me.

But there isn't a tree.

I've been all up and down today, which I don't like one bit, so I decided to blog about it. I got sudden (and instantaneous) panic, crying and shortness of breath when that sad little hyena flashed into my head out of seemingly nowhere. All I got was that one, split second, thought/picture and it sent me into an instant tail spin. It hasn't happened like that in awhile, or that badly. That hyena gets me every time, and any time she wants.

So I basically wrote out this long thing to say...that I miss my mom today, and it came at me like an overpowering wave. So I think I'll paint something really emotionally difficult for me, in order to ease something for myself in the long run.

Applications, Infinity

I have been trying my darndest for the past (over a) year to secure a full time job in this world. As a result, I have been in WAY fewer exhibitions this year...I think because I applied to way less calls. I do feel like I've been slouching, but in reality, I just have application/portfolio-making burnout.

I have yet to get a full time job, or many interviews, quite frankly. So I don't yet know if it was worth the sacrifices that were being made. I am also feeling a lull in my 'making'. Usually the death knell for artists...I find that I need to be really solid on my thoughts and inside stuff to get something decent out on paper. Otherwise I'm just keeping time, mindlessly painting. More painting doesn't give me more ideas...more thinking and more mental stress/emotion do.

I don't know what that says about me as an artist, but I'm hoping for a breakthrough. I am feeling the tension of not creating so I'm sure it'll break soon. In the meantime, I'll go to my part-time jobs and start applying for shows for next year again...applications, infinity.

Sunday, April 21, 2013


Last night I attended Lotta Art for School 33 Art Center at Silo Point in Baltimore. My work has been accepted for the past two years into this lottery-style benefit. Last year my piece was chosen at the last minute. I was excited that I didn't have to go pick it up again, quite frankly. I was delighted it was chosen, but I was in the midst of my final thesis right around the pick up time.

This year I was speaking to a friend and missed the big moment where my piece was chosen (not a stretch, given how many mispronunciations of my name are actually possible), but when I looked up I did, indeed have a red dot. I stuck around and pounced on the patrons when they requested a gallery assistant to remove the piece from the wall. I got 'em right before they left. The above piece, Keepsake, is no longer mine.

Saturday, April 13, 2013

Ode to Red

If you know anything about's that I follow my life themes. Maybe there are a few more words for this phenomenon, but I cycle back around and around and around. In my undergrad at MIAD, I created a Witness Story for my Service Learning class,  I used the same video I shot, edited it down and it became an integral part of my MFACA thesis. Interesting, how it cycled back around.

I also, have an affinity for the color red. I can't say that I wear a ton of it, by I have a few distinct pieces when I feel I'm in the mood. My apartment, on the other hand, is draped, ensconced, coated in reds. I tend to balance it with a dark turquoise, but it's still that color I go for more often than not. Sometimes I need to stop and think, "Do I need the red?" because of the overabundance of it in my repertoire. I'll actively seek out red.

Speaking of repertoires, I'm not sure if you noticed, but my art work is primarily red as well. It is, and was, so much so, that other people have picked up on it with a very small sampling or, not knowing anything about me at all..."Lotta red". When I was in undergrad, our professor had us write our artist statements based on others' feedback of our work. An intriguing concept that I often forget about, but am remembering now...let others tell you what your work means to them, what they see, not what you want it to be. Wow. Wildcard, what an interesting concept. The feedback I got was sort of sort of...oddy difficult to write towards. They were much the same, one word impressions, "nail on the head"sorts of comments...they were difficult concepts ans words to work into my statement. The truth is always a little bit hard, right?

The least traumatizing word among "forceful" "bleed", "secret" "vaginal" "womanly" etc was "red". Simple. I decided in the end that red was a safe bet, as well as containing and allowing for the breadth of what I needed to say. And again, with the title of this thesis, Sanguine, I selected the word so carefully...sanguine has multiple and seemingly disparate meanings; bloody and cheerfully optimistic. What a weird. damn. word. Well it was perfect for the series. I was really proud of it. It marked the first time I had launched a full scale investigation on violence, my own PTSD, what it mean to be a victim,  an aggressor. I was dealing with domestic violence for the first time, visually. But not calling it that or relating to it as that yet, and not really realizing it was DV at that point. it was a confusing state of being, it was a confusing state of mind that I was in. I was at a point of sheer desperation in my life, I was depressed, sad, feeling so hopeless, missing my mom because I was feeling like an outcast again...and I was angry.

I was always able to cover it well, but I had had a pot of simmering rage for about 20 years at that point. I think I'm still angry, but less so, and more articulate about it now. With my verbal language growing over the years, I feel my visual language has to have changed as well. Nonetheless, I think back and appreciate the care I took in choosing my words. It's probably the best artist statement I've ever written. It actually brings me to tears often, when I happen to re-read it...just the words. Words, single, solitary words sometimes can be so powerful. I'm in awe at the power of language, it's inflection, emphasis, order and chaos.

I looked, and I saw the earth in flames. Her face was nothing but red.

The color red is associated with people's passions, be they joyous or painful. It is the color of the very essence of life, it is our blood. Blood is unique in that it carries two opposite connotations, it can be the giver of life or the harbinger of death. The giver of life has always been a woman, and the earth has always been personified. "She" is essential and ingrained; her experience is elemental, powerful, sanguine. She is not without a face, she is in every face.

Incidentally, I re-used my original mind map, if you will...of the feedback I received from the other students to write my statement. I recycled it into my next major "bloodbath series", better known as Dear Heart (Deer Hart) - Force. see the trend(s)? 

So how then, does the red of horror that I use so often, turn into the red of comfort that I use in my home and in my art (a cathartic process for me)? How do I manage to marry the two? to turn off the association so completely in one arena. People are so comfortable in my home that they often get lulled into abnormal laziness or sleep. "sorry, it just feels so warm and relaxing in here"
I believe my mother actually completed a study about the affects of color on people in prison. i.e. the colors of their jumpsuits. The gist of it was, orange and red and yellow made them angry and on edge. how then, can people be relaxed and angry with the same colors? Red is so confusing and amazing.

***Mom/redcarpet/hollywood/ flashy/ bloodstains, path of blood/pool of blood?/ died on the 'red carpet' in a way

Lotta Art on April 20th!

For the second year in a row, I've been juried into Lotta Art which benefits School 33 Art Center. 
It's coming up at 5:30 pm on April 20th at Silo Point in Baltimore. 

To see all of the incredible artwork available ahead of time, check out this link:

To purchase tickets to this lottery-style benefit exhibition please visit:

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

'Stories In Form' from BAIC

Just wanted to pass along this press release for Catherine Akin's upcoming thesis exhibition in Baltimore:


Stories In Form from the Baltimore American Indian Center
April 26 - September 21, 2013
Opening Reception: Friday April 26th, 6-8pm
Baltimore American Indian Center Heritage Museum

113 South Broadway
Baltimore, Maryland 21231
Museum Hours: Wed-Sat 11am - 5pm

Baltimore- “Stories In Form from the Baltimore American Indian Center”, Baltimore American Indian Center (BAIC) Heritage Museum’s latest exhibit, uses community-engaged artwork, both traditional and contemporary, to relate a compelling and collective narrative of Native American life. Contemporary Native artists include Loretta and Herman Oxendine (Lumbee), Waylon Gary White Deer (Choctaw), Arnold Richardson (Haliwa-Saponi), Zachary Greenbaum (Cherokee), an in-progress weaving by Ms. Frieda Minner (Lumbee), Ashley Minner (Lumbee), and youth from Native American After School Art Program (NAASAP).

Community artist, educator and founder of NAASAP, Ashley Minner (Lumbee) has published an exquisite corpse artist book, “The Exquisite Lumbee”. The publication is featured along with cyanotype photography, poetry and zines created by NAASAP youth participants who will be featured in this years Wide Angle Youth Media Festival at Creative Alliance in May.

The work of young filmmaker and artist, Zachary Greenbaum (Cherokee) will also be featured in the exhibition. Greenbaum has created a film about his father, a Native storyteller Joseph Stands With Many, as he travels to various events. The Tacit Tome is filled with experimental imagery and paradoxical interviews.

This exhibition includes related programming/projects such as our soon to be published community cookbook titled, “Eat ‘Em Up Native American Recipes”. Eriall Steiner (Haliwa-Saponi), a Holistic Health Coach contributed healthy food tips. With assistance from artist Julie Lin and her “Kitchen Stories Project”, the BAIC community created collages based on their most cherished memories of food and family. Limited copies of “Eat ‘Em Up Native American Recipes” will be available for purchase April 26, 2013 during the opening reception.

Since 1968, the Baltimore American Indian Center and its members have kept the Native American Indian culture and traditions alive in Baltimore and the surrounding areas through PowWows, community meetings and health programs. The Center’s Heritage Museum holds an impressive collection of North American Indian artifacts that includes basketry, pottery and textiles that inform visitors of art and craft in Native culture. From soapstone carvings and weaved baskets to documentary film and zines, “Stories In Form from the Baltimore American Indian Center” nods to the past and embraces emerging storytelling forms. For more information on the exhibition and related programs please visit

This exhibition is Catherine Akins’ thesis for her MFA in Curatorial Practice at Maryland Institute College of Art, with generous support by the Office of Community Engagement at Maryland Institute College of Art. Akins was born and raised in Arizona and received her BFA in Intermedia Arts at Arizona State University in 2010. Currently, she is part of the planning committee for The John Fonda Gallery at Theatre Project. She continues to investigate her own cultural identity - Mexican, Yaqui, Pennsylvania Dutch - through her artistic and curatorial practice. Contact Catherine at

Saturday, March 16, 2013


Have you ever looked at the back of your painting and found that it's better than the front? Sometimes, I muddy up the front too much (usually as a result of my anticipation and inability to wait for everything to dry), then I'll flip it over to the back...more often than not, the back is the side I go with.

So I've been thinking for quite awhile about the accidents that happen in my studio. Hell, most of my mixed media and collage work comes from the floor, I often attribute the phenomenon to helper elves, because how else would 'exactly what I need' be right there for the picking, exactly when I need it?

It is maybe a bit of chance or a happy accident. My work is FULL of them. I think I was first confident enough to display them as the 'real' work in my 2009, 365.series. Below are two different approaches to/examples of the same premise, which is essentially: arty accidents are often cool art.

365. fifty-nine

365. ninety-seven

On that note, I also am having some issues with my dying old computer, particularly when I'm running a video. Whether it's the video player or the computer processor or a combo (I'm not solidly sure), it makes for some interesting art! Some of my newest work, Glitch, is technologically accidental. I just happened to be around to catch it..."happenstance" (or helper elves, we can't be sure of anything)... Computer art on my website.

Tuesday, March 5, 2013


I felt compelled to work with yarn. I don't honestly know what happened other than a few general impressions I had and continue to have. This is a work in progress for sure...I am still exploring.

My impressions of yarn are of comfort, they remind me of my paternal grandmother, Dorothy. I used to play with her yarn and unwind it and wrap it around her dining room furniture (what a nightmare). I am attracted to the feel of yarn, I am attracted to how it makes me feel and remember; it calls on my nostalgia.

I also like the lines that can be made with yarn,  the linear quality. I like the order of lines all in a row, and the chaos of them not being perfect because my human hands touched them. Many human hands have touched the handwoven yarns. Close to perfection, but not quite.

My college students are right now completing a narrative project, what I've titled as "String Theory"; to tell the story of your everything (yourself) with string, yarn or rope (may be low relief, high relief or in the round)....I realized later that I had been completing the project before they embarked upon the journey. It was an interesting moment. I teach, to a certain extent, to what I am interested in as an artist. I pick the image examples based on them being appealing to my eye and my aesthetic. The students get my experience and I get their experience regardless, if we realize it or not. It's a subconscious and reciprocal conversation.

So the story of my everything (at the moment) is...tactile...comforting...youthful...wise...fond...  These pieces are about memory, and I am currently still experimenting with application and medium...but I do think there may be a deification of Grandma Dorothy on the horizon...I'm thinking soft, colorful, altarpieces to be ready for the Day of the Dead in November...I always miss it, well not this time!

Memento Mori...

The above piece, Keepsake, will be up for auction at this year's Lotta Art, for School 33 Art Center in Baltimore in April.

The first one I did is the small, intimate one above, Loss. I will have to keep this one for my own collection.

...And now I feel like I'm getting there...bright and 1970's/1980's. They have a shag rug feel to them without actually being shag rug.