Creating and parenting
I've been a member of the group MamaCita for about a year now. (From our website: MamaCita is a Mothers' Cooperative in the Arts. Its purpose is to bring together female artists in Philadelphia and its suburbs to discuss and share their art, to offer constructive critique and encouragement, to find venues for the exhibition and sale of the group's work and ultimately, to inspire and motivate.) I had heard of the group a few times over the years, and last year around Mother's Day I attended a screening of the movie Who Does She Think She Is? hosted by MamaCita. It was at that time that I inquired about joining the group. Although I have artist friends, I wanted and needed a group to meet with regularly.
We are currently working on a group show titled (W)Holons (a holon is something that is simultaneously a whole and a part). Each of us is responsible for creating at least three 4" squares and one 20x20 piece of artwork to fit the theme. We met last week to put all our work together and see how it's all coming along. What an inspiring meeting! Since we have artists working in all different media, I thought the work might not work together. Not so - the fact that the squares are all the same size really ties them together. One of the places we'll be exhibiting this show is at the Abington Art Center, some time in December (details coming soon).
My three squares were inspired by Malayna starting kindergarten this year. After I would drop her off in the morning, I would take a walk in the park where we used to go to play. Each time I would find something (leaf, seed pod, flower, etc.) to bring home and would put it on the table for her to see when she got home from school. Each of my squares features a drawing of something I found in the park for her. The words relate to how I was feeling at the time. Also included are the words to a song by Dar Williams, "But sometimes I will ask the moon where it shined upon you last, And shake my head and laugh and say, It all went by so fast."
I'm so glad I found this group. It's given me the push I needed to create work like this again - work inspired by my experiences as a mother. It's a struggle to do work that is just for me as opposed to the work I do for milkshake. Each is satisfying, but in different ways.