Visual inspiration, fiber, textile structures, installation, encaustic, and always the question-does wax make it better?
Tuesday, July 19, 2011
Teaching Encaustic in Australia
An email arrived last year. Teach in Australia? I instantly said yes. It started a chain reaction in which I am presently caught. Half way through this trip, I have taught 28 students in 3 separate workshops in 9 days. The first at a beautiful art supply store which sells only the finest materials, the second in horse stables where we froze our tushies off, and the third in an upper crust boarding school ceramics studio. Every situation is different and each requires its own special set up. Because our equipment is the state-of-the-art, heavy, and requires a lot of electricity-the set up is always a challenge. I have learned that it always works out! No need to get upset, because magically like the theatre, when opening nite arrives, the cast and crew miraculously perform perfectly-the show goes off without a hitch, even though the rehearsals were abysmal. It is especially fun to figure out just what works best, for we are interested in giving a state-of-the-art workshop with state-of-the-art equipment. You can always set up an encaustic studio or workshop on a shoe string, but it is terrific to give students the best equipment with which to work. Students always do surprisingly good work. The best are sometimes those with the least art experience. They have no preconceived notions or expectations unlike the artists who think they should be making masterpieces or painting for their next show. What has been the most enriching and rewarding part in this enterprise are the bonds forged with people, and the connections made. Being able to see a country by interacting with people has been an enormous delight. When Kim and I travel we want to meet the people. This has been the perfect vehicle for us. We have been invited into people's homes. They cook for us and tell us stories of their lives, and show us their towns. We have connected on a level that is beyond art, and we know we are the co-presidents of the Lucky Girls Society. We adore seeing the world in this way. For a look into our 5 day workshop for fiber, textile artists and print and papermakers, see here.