Expect the Unexpected

More shows and more classes have come in over the past few days; 2010 is quickly filling up without my having applied for any residencies yet (or for hardly anything that’s come up!) I have also been inundated with requests for reference letters, the need for the research I’ve been doing has suddenly escalated, and snowflakes have appeared in Chicago today but there is as yet no word on the beater (I want to have it safely home before winter roads become troublesome). The long 2010 quiet time I had anticipated is rapidly disappearing. I’m not complaining at all (truly!); it’s absolutely wonderful to be in demand, but I must acknowledge that I am beginning to feel a bit pressured and am also finding it difficult to keep track of all the different elements.

They’re back across the street, and they brought the real snow with them.

The shows are great, the classes are great, the reference letters are less so, since I no longer have a salary that ostensibly covers my time writing them (I had to put together a re-usable response e-mail, explaining to the many teaching-job seekers why it’s essential to have references with academic affiliation, which I no longer possess). The research is necessary but copious, as is the time I will soon spend on a few applications. With the exception of the classes, possible sales from the shows, a possible return at a much later date on the research time, and of course the benefits of the possible residencies, none of these things have any guarantee, they’re all speculative…and they are not time spent on my artwork, nor on my various personal-environment improvement projects.

Apparently, I will still absolutely need residencies for their escape from everyday life, sanctity and focus, rather than as the occasional slight change I imagined they would become, post-academe. My next residency deadlines are in January, but I am running out of open 2010 time slots to apply for!

The ‘warehouse’, where my artwork lives when it’s not being shown…I wanted to clear this out in the spring and move to a smaller space.  Will I have time?

Hugely interesting, even amazing, this new adventure.  What amazes me the most is that I am feeling any pressure whatsoever, because (with the exception of the varied teaching gigs, and this particular bout of extended research) I did every single bit of this, for years and years, in addition to working hard at a full-time job!  How did I ever survive?!

Some last-minute shout-outs:

Terez Iacovino, Linday Gleason and Kristen DeGree (above – I love this shot), who began their six-month internships at WSW while I was in residence are now preparing to leave (snif).  But: the show of the work they’ve done during that time, Livin’ On A Brayer, is up at Women’s Studio Workshop till December 10.

Loni Diep’s gorgeous and creepy (I can never ask for more) huge kimonos, with their traditional decorative patterns composed of plastic surgery components (like silicone, fake eyelashes and hair). are still up at the Noyes Center in Evanston, part of a marvelously curated show, Somatic.  Kudos to Loni, the rest of the artists, and Chie Curley and Barbara Goldsmith, curators.  This is a must-see!

And, Aimee Lee is back at Diaspora Vibe gallery in Miami, giving artists’ talks at her solo show, Native Intelligence, for Art Basel.

There are way, way, waaaaay too many holiday shows and sales going on in Chicago than I have time to mention, but many, many, many artists and friends are out there strutting their stuff.  If you’re in town, get on out and see everything you can!  I’m so booked I won’t even begin to make it to half of them, but this is the weekend (and week) for it all. Go. Buy. Enjoy.