|Artist Jimmy Talarico|
So some of you may notice how Google on occasion changes the banner image on their homepage based on commemoration of certain events. Well this past Thursday they caught my eye. The image above was displayed with the text to the right reading "to understand is to stand under which is to look up to which is a good way to understand"...
I may be easily amused, but that text to me was profound. The looseness in the words arrangement, the intentional lack of any punctuation in a sort of run-on tone, and of course the message. It was true and humble. I had to find out who this was. And I gotta say my discovery took me by surprise.
I clicked on the banner and discovered Sister Mary Corita Kent... Sister. As in "nun." An artist, and a nun. And her art was amazing. What I discovered is that she was a very influential person in the pop art movement and had an incredible teaching style to her students in Los Angeles.
This was all such an eye opening experience for me. I've struggled at times with wondering if my faith in a God would cause those who don't to disregard my art as some attempt at propaganda. And if those who share my faith would see my art as heresy because it doesn't fit into some churchy package. I take pride in the honesty of my work, the moments of darkness, and moments of hope. I like that it is raw, and messy, and not fake toward truth (if that makes sense).
So I was inspired. By a nun. That transformed pop art in Los Angeles in the 40s. She didn't do "church" art. She did "truth" art. And because of that and her ability to see the world and affectively communicate her perceptions to others, she was also not only accepted but revered within the art community. Truly someone to aspire to.
If you'd like to find out more about Corita Kent, there is a great YouTube video you can watch here:http://youtu.be/15YDYbNk570
So now what am I up to? Seashells and doilies. That's right. It's another Memories to Masterpiece project. This time in memory of Melinda's grandmother, Carol who passed away almost a year ago. She was a strong woman, and I really enjoyed visiting her. We liked to tease each other, always in fun.
Melinda's mom, Bonnie commissioned me to make a piece for her. She asked that I use Carol's seashell collection and Melinda added the doilies. See, Carol grew up in an upper-class family in Florida, but left it all for a life on the road in Montana after she married Bonnie's dad. So the seashells reference her roots.
She was always put together, keeping a weekly hair appointment and wearing her favorite jewelry every day. She was never afraid to give you her opinion, and her opinion was always right. She was proper, and the doilies reference that quality. It is who she was, and we loved her for it.
So now I'll put it all together as fine art in a piece that will honor Carol, in a way that will become a family heirloom.
So that's what I'm working on now. I'll post as I progress.
Alright, so this is long overdue. This is the art walk update. Apologies for taking so long to get this out. Let's just say I've been busy.
So the first highlight is a legitimate sale, which was very exciting. The piece above was sold to a TA I teach with at MSU. He was eye balling the piece the whole time he was there and finally came out and said, "I really like that piece." Knowing he is a "broke college student" we worked out a deal. Let's just say he would not take it for free, which tells me he values it. How awesome is that?
I had so many people tell me they'd never seen art like mine before, which I took as a huge compliment. Good or bad, at least I'm finding my voice, even if I did get a strange reaction from one older gal during the first art walk.
Here's the story. She came out of the conference rooms where my work was hung and walked over by me. I offered her some wine, she declined. She looked like she was a bit disoriented, and after some awkward silence she turns to me and asks, "Do you have nightmares about earthquakes?"... Uh. No. :) I explained to her how my pieces ultimately are about hope, but hope usually comes after a realization of something missed or unattained. She said, "Huh." And kinda just left. It was pretty fun.
The other big moment for me was when an older gentleman and his wife came to see my work. I put up narratives with each piece and I could tell they were really taking their time reading and observing what was on the walls. When they walked out of the conference rooms this man had tears in his eyes then noticed I was the artist. His mouth kind of dropped and he walked up to me. With the utmost respect and appreciation he said, "Thank you so much for showing your work publicly." I was floored. We talked for about 5 more minutes and parted ways. All I could think was, "This is exactly why I am an artist." Incredible.
I found both of these books through the blog www.brainpickings.org which is an incredible resource for creative types.
Why these two books? Well, I love that Conversations With Picasso is literally written like you are sitting in a room with the man, and I find that to be a priceless opportunity. And Steal Like an Artist is helping me to stay focused on strengthening my creative muscles and motivating me to keep pushing forward with my work.
This summer was intense with getting pieces ready for the art walk and the fall has been crazy with work and teaching ARCH 151 at MSU. But these books are my opportunities to remain actively engaged in my creative work and help me take that next deep breath so I can start another push.
Thought I'd share this event poster. I will be emailing this out this week to some friends and clients. If you're local, please feel free to share or let me know if you'd like the image emailed to you. Thanks everyone!
Well I took a few hours this afternoon to get my pieces up for the Art Walk. I'm happy with how it turned out. I was asked to show for the September Art Walk as well so I will work on adding some sculptures to a front display wall, as well as replacing any pieces that may sell (fingers crossed!).
The opening reception is this Friday from 6PM to 8 PM. The address is 411 East Main St in Bozeman on the corner of Rouse and Main. I'll be there the whole time so please come by if you're in town!... And tell your friends.
The show will be up through September and you can come by the space anytime during CTA business hours, Monday through Friday 8AM - 5PM. Or by appointment with me.
All of my work is available online at:
Thanks for your support. Here we go!
Got this one wrapped up a couple nights ago. Hopefully I'll get final photos this weekend. I'm really happy with where this piece is taking things. The combination of ash, wax, & plaster has a LOT of potential.
Yeah. I'm diggin it.
Good news today = much business heading into the fall. I know it's still July, but here's all the positive stuff coming.
First of all, I was just asked to show my work for our August Art Walk AND our September Art Walk! Really cool news. This gives me time to develop more pieces, possibly some smaller sculptural ones. We'll see where it ends up, but I'm excited.
Second, I was asked to teach a first year design studio at the Montana State University School of Architecture. Feels like a cool honor. So I will cut back some hours at work and add plenty more for teaching. I'm looking forward to working on communicating ideas about good design to new students. It will be challenging but will help me work on communicating good design to my clients as well, so it's a win-win.
Third, we are progressing with building Memories to Masterpiece. My goal is to get some work shops set up with some local retirement communities to show our product. Hope to do that in August... maybe.
So dang busy, but good busy. Let's see what comes of it, shall we!
I finished this one a couple weeks ago, but just got the final photo online. This is a sample piece for Memories To Masterpiece. Not sure if I'll put it in my first show August 8th. Thoughts, comments?
This is a sample piece I'm working on for Memories to Masterpiece before I start marketing hard in Bozeman. Looks like my marketing will focus on nursing homes and memorials for deceased loved ones. Feels kind of morbid to write that, but there is an honor in it, and a love, and a hope. And when I work on these pieces it reminds me of my grandma and I'm thankful that she was the inspiration for this work.
And to be clear, I will always be open to other commissions, I just need a more focused starting point to gauge costs and time, ya know, those business kinds of things... :)
I feel like I'm ROCKIN it! So stay tuned. This is gonna be fun!
Jimmy & Melinda Talarico
From here you can read our opinions on our industry, updates on our work, and pretty much anything else we'd like to discuss. Dialog is appreciated so please comment!