Tuesday, February 1, 2011

A New Blue Space

I can see clearly now...
Packing up my old studio...
Sorting through the work from my flat file...
My new studio...

Finding old pieces of and about my Mom, to bring into my new space...





George Saw Edna, 2005
photolitho with mixed media on paper
detail
detail
Blue Self, 2003
silkscreen
Night Window/Blind Contour Self, 2003
felt tip pen and watercolor on paper
The day before my mother died, my husband helped me pack up my studio. I was convinced that I wanted to come home and set up my studio in Woolwich - a bedroom had opened up and I told myself I would save money and resources by not paying rent and travelling the 50 minute ride. Besides, I had begun to feel very cramped in my studio. We rented a U-Haul and brought home everything but the work from my flat file. I got the call about my Mom's passing the next morning, and hit the road and spent the week in RI. Yesterday I drove to the studio to fetch my artwork. When I walked into my empty space, I thought, Wow, this looks good all cleared out. What am I doing?? I don't want to leave!!! I ran downstairs to talk to my landlord to see if it was too late to change my mind - I'd given my notice weeks ago, but it was still January. I knew that another artist in the building had his heart set and was ready to move into my space - my landlord asked would I consider moving into a new space? I looked at it. It's a bit smaller than my old studio, but it has more wall space to work on, has a view of the harbour, gets strong morning light, and the floor is blue. That felt refreshing. I said, Yes, this will work. (Whew! Just in the nick of time! I felt like Elaine running away from the altar to hop on the bus with Benjamin in The Graduate...)
I made the decision to move home in the weeks when I knew that my mother was dying. Maybe the little girl in me wanted to go home and hide, I don't know. But yesterday I could think more clearly, and I knew that I was making a mistake. I need the contact with the other artists in the building, and I love being downtown as much as I love being at home in the woods. I can work from my home space and my city studio. I teach in Portland one night and one morning - I can put in half days in the studio on those days, and my husband works in Portland everyday, so I can always hitch a ride with him on other days. I don't know what I was thinking. Hey, my Mom just died. I guess it's natural to feel discombobulated...
I just needed to empty everything out! Note to self: Do This More Often.
So, I will use my home space to store the majority of my stuff, and use my studio downtown for work only, and whatever supplies I'm currently using.
I sorted through all my work yesterday and gravitated toward certain pieces to bring into my new blue space.
Ideas are percolating...

4 comments:

mischief said...

Wow Martha! Those are some awesome artworks!

By the way, if you didn't know, your postcard arrived safely and was on my REAL wall last week! It will likely follow us around a little I imagine.

How's your mailbox looking this week?

martha miller said...

Hi Andy!

Thankyou! Yes, I saw my Bird Brain on your wall! Cooool! (I couldn't figure out how to comment, but then, I have been bird brained this past week...) I have been receiving wonderful mailart! Will post about it soon, and I will be catching up on my 365 Mail Heads TODAY because I am snowed in at home!

Showing up for the Muse said...

Oh! You had me holding my breath as i read your post! So glad you got to keep a studio in town. Wonderful realization- and just as you said- in the nick of time!
Stay inspired now- tilly

martha miller said...

Thankyou, Tilly! You are an inspiration to me!