Walking Owl Studio -- Cat Fink, Visual Artist
drawings in mixed media

Blog

(posted on 6 Oct 2016)

THIS IS AN INVITATION. COME AND PLAY!

I have a solo art show happening, and I am inviting to you come and create along with me. For real. See the end of this post for the when-and-where details.

Drawing, writing, folding origami animals, composing music, planning next year’s garden. Whatever gives you joy, come and play.

What gives me joy? I ask myself this question every day.

My upcoming show The Joy Diary is about joy, creativity, and sharing. It’s about inviting people into the studio. Showing the work behind the work. (I stole that line from Austin Kleon, awesome creator that he is.) I’m sharing creativity and process—what happened before that drawing was hung on the gallery wall, what made it become what it is. Sharing the path my creations take, mess and masterpiece alike.

My favourite advice on creating art (and life) comes from Canadian artist Norman Yates. ‘’Disorder opens a space.’’ Last year I asked myself, ‘’What if I bring some of Norman’s disorder into the gallery? What happens if the gallery becomes a place of sharing creative process, including the messes?’’ We all expect the art gallery to be a place of completed creation. The artwork is polished, the product of a year-long (or more) artist’s process. Our experience is passive.

I am making The Joy Diary interactive.

Imagine opening day, walking into a gallery show that begins at the beginning of creating the art. One drawing, dated today, and blank sheets of paper on the walls. Anticipation. The gallery expanding into artist studio.

In the gallery space an invitation is posted. ‘Artist At Play. Join me upstairs. See what is happening on today’s drawing. Chat, ask questions.’

For the run of the show, I am drawing onsite at the Station House Gallery in their upstairs studio. I’ll come in at opening time, remove a blank sheet of paper from the wall, create a drawing ‘What Gives Me Joy’, and re-hang the completed artwork. Eighteen large, narrative drawings over twenty-four days. Whew!

Imagine music playing. Imagine art materials and paper scattered across table tops, a cooling grande decaf mocha-with-whip sitting where it can’t get spilled onto the developing drawing (I’m getting wiser as I get older). This is my version of heaven.

Back downstairs in the gallery space, there is a second invitation asking, ‘What gives you joy?’ On a table are paper and art materials. I am inviting you to create your own piece of joy, give it to the gallery attendant, and have it hung as part of the show. You might create a drawing, a piece of writing, whatever gives you joy.

You, my Awesome Viewer, are invited to become immersed in the energy and activity of creation. Question and reply, viewers becoming participants, joining me, our artwork added to the gallery walls until at show’s end, this space is filled with a community’s conversation about joy.

HERE ARE THE DETAILS. The Joy Diary is happening at the Station House Gallery, #1 Mackenzie Avenue North, Williams Lake, BC. The show opens November 3rd, 2016, and runs to November 26th. Gallery hours are Monday to Saturday, 10am to 5pm. https://www.facebook.com/stationhousegallery/

Come and play. I invite you!

Mentioned in this post:

Austin Kleon’s awesome books, Show Your Work! and Steal Like An Artist. Both published by WORKMAN, in 2014 and 2012 respectively. He does a weekly eletter that I love as well. http://austinkleon.com/

Norman Yates’ quote is from his artist talk, Two Rivers Gallery, Prince George, BC, February 2010. I was blessed to have met and talked with this generous artist twice in my career. http://www.timescolonist.com/obituary-artist-norman-yates-brought-big-spaces-to-the-canvas-1.874307

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