Friday, May 29, 2009

Highlight of Snag

Fred and I pose during the opening reception

I made a quick trip over to Philadelphia for one day of the SNAG conference last week, and to my surprise, I saw my professor from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, Fred Fenster. He generally doesn't go to the conference, much preferring to stay home and work in his studio. He is the person that taught me what I know about making holloware as well as many other skills; toolmaking, craftsmanship and pewter, to name a few. It was hard to leave, as I had a just a short time to catch up with him, along with the many other friends that I ran into at the conference.

Sorry as I was to leave, I had plenty of work waiting for me back in Brooklyn. After five years of sharing a studio, I now have the space entirely to myself. All week I have been re-arranging the layout of the studio for maximum efficiency and creative flow. I have a soldering area that is seperate from my small workbench and I will have a wall that is dedicated to inspirational images, and my own drawings. I am planning to have a party soon to inaugurate the redesigned space, details to follow once I figure out a date.

Getting back to the conference, there was an informative seminar focused on professional development, but I will leave it to Gabriel Craig, Emiko Oye and Lynette Andreasen to give their insights.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009


As of tomorrow, I will be the sole occupant of my studio. I have been sharing the studio for 5 years now, but my studio mate has relocated to upstate NY, so she will be setting up her studio there. This is a big change for me. It involves replacing some of the tools that she has very generously allowed me to use over the years. It will also give me more space to work with. At this point, I plan to use some of this space as a consultation area for meeting my ever-increasing number of custom work clients.

I am also thinking about my past work as a sculptor. Mabye the extra space will inspire me to make larger work. I have been talking about that for some time now....

Starting tomorrow is the Society of North American Goldsmiths conference in Philadelphia. I had planned to attend the whole conference, but with the trip abroad and my upcoming equipment purchases, it's not in the budget. However, I do plan to go tomorrow for a special seminar on professional practices, and I hope to catch up with some colleagues and friends afterwards.

Later this week, I will add more Bali photos to the flickr account and talk more about that lovely place!

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Back to New Yrok

Dance headdresses on display.

I have now been back in the US for a few days. I am not quite fully back in my mind, however, and all of my dreams still take place in Bali. Aside from the confusion and jet lag, I feel very refreshed. It is great to remember that there is a whole world out there, and most of them aren't thinking about an economic crises. I was talking to a Balinese guy and he tried to tell me not to go back to the US because of pig flu. I though there must be some kind of translation issue going on because I had no idea what he was talking about. Besides the internet cafes being slow, I just didn't want to spend a lot of time there, with all the charms of Bali at the doorstep.

Most of my time was spent working on the costumes for the show with Akim Funk Buddha and the Starship Crew, and studying Balinese dance. It was a challenge to arrive and very quickly get to work sourcing materials and working with tailors to get everything sewn in time. I had to make some bodysuits and finding an overlock machine in the town we were in, Ubud, was quite a challenge. I ended up learning how to make a bodysuit pattern on the fly. It was also a stretch of the imagination to go to the market and try to create from what was in front of me, rather then what I envisioned finding. In the end, the costumes looked great and that was very gratifying.