Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Residency at Vermont Studio Center

I was at the Vermont Studio Center last week for a one week residency with 59 other Vermont artists. One week isn't really enough time to get a significant amount of work done, but it was a good opportunity to focus on work for a week and meet other Vermont artists.

I've decided to dedicate this year to working on my Flag Proposal Series so I had prepared three of them to work on during my stay at VSC. After a couple of days I realized my goals for what I was going to accomplish were completely unreasonable. I've always known that my process was slow but I thought that if I had a week to just focus without having to worry about cooking and shopping or any of the other various distractions I normally have, that I would get a lot done. I learned that the work is just slow, regardless of how many other things I have to do.

By way of background, this series is part of my efforts to get the American flag replaced with one of my designs. I've completed three already and I hope to get enough of them done by the end of the year for a show. After last week I think this goal may be unreasonable but I'm trying to focus to see how far I can get. I'll be real happy if I can finish six this year.

This first one, a nine-sided flag, has been the biggest struggle design-wise. The middle section is the second I've made for it and I'm still not happy, though I need to look at the images more to decide what to do. I'm also not sure about the orientation either -- horizontal, vertical, or diagonal. 

I'm happy with the direction and progress of this one, trapezoid flag. I still need to paint the center but I'm not worried about it at this point. I think the salamander-shaped, epoxy-filled, knot in the future blue-ish section is a great addition.  

This final one, double-star or double-sun flag, I am worried about because I know how difficult it will be for construct. I need to fit all the pieces together so they overlap but are still offset by about an eighth of an inch. I'm not looking forward to the assembly but at least I have the excuse of having to fix my router and finishing the others before getting back to it. I thought I would finish the other two and get well into this one during my time at VSC but I still have a ways to go on the others and I never touched this one, other than to arrange it. 
The overlapping circles are constructed, and will be painted, like this older piece, Forever Holiday, except with variations of blue rather than red, yellow blue:
To see the direction of the work, here are images of the first ones:
First Flag
shellac on curly maple, cherry, and bird's-eye maple
24" x 41" x 1"
 Starry Night Flag
shellac on curly maple, cherry, and bird's-eye maple
26.5" x 26.5" x 1
  Inverted Chevron Flag
shellac on curly maple, curly birch, and bird's-eye maple
53" x 34" x 1.5"

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