In 2017 I made more art between July and October than I have in the past ten years. I launched my exhibit WOVEN at the Upstream Gallery in Hastings-on-Hudson, NY on October 1, featuring objects woven from recycled materials, painting that combined weaving as an element, and several woven and kinetic sculptures.
Early in the year I also embarked on a new course of training in Somatic Experiencing, which is a body based form of trauma treatment. This has been nothing short of transformative in terms of my own physical and mental well-being, as well as my approach to practice with my own clients. I'm now in my Intermediate level year and can't wait to learn and experience more.
On the theme of training I also spent a transformative ten days up at Haystack Mountain School of Craft on Deer Isle, Maine in June. I can only say this place is magic. From the food to the magnificent 200 foot staircase from the school down to Penobscot Bay. There I took a fibers class from master weaver Marianne Fairbanks from the University of Wisconsin. In those 10 days I learned to spin and felt wool, crochet, make and splice rope, make a net, create a loom, thread and work a complex floor treadle loom, make baskets and a simple kite. Are you exhausted reading that list? Well I didn't sleep for the entire first week.
What I learned there had everything to do with the production of art work over the summer.
I haven't even touched upon the political stuff. I've been phone banking, canvasing, letter writing and marching with my fellow citizens in the defense of our democracy and I have to say its invigorating. 2018 will prove to be even more challenging and I'll be working hard on the November midterm elections.
One of my proudest achievements this past year was a gratitude practice in the form of a blog I started on Martin Luther King Day 2017. This was five days before the inauguration of our current president, at a time when many were anxious and fearful and the government was in turmoil. There was so much negative speech in the media and the news that I felt the need for myself to find more positivity. One Good Thing Daily or OGT DAILY was the result of a walk in the snow which cleared my head and had me appreciating the beauty of the world around me. It occurred to me everyone could use a dose of that and I committed to writing about One Good Thing each day for the 365 days of that year. I have just completed that year and I can say gratitude practice has made my life much better. That is not to say it was all happiness and roses, but on the days where things seemed bleak, when another disgusting tweet had gone out or another outrage had been revealed about abuse of power, looking for the positive had its soothing effects.
OGT DAILY can be found on Blogspot here is the link:http://ogtdaily.blogspot.com/2018/01/ogt-daily-day-three-hundred-and-sixty_66.html
I want to end this blog post by inviting you to attend one of my new workshops in the spring or fall - art journaling, weaving and fiber works, drawing and painting, and mandala and energy work.
See Schedules and Special Workshops for details.