Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Ecolect Podcast!

I've been on vacation for a minute, which I'll chit chat about later, but I just wanted to drop a link to the Ecolect Podcast where they interview none other than yours truly! I am absolutely petrified by any form of public speaking (even pre-recorded), so please ignore the "ums" and "likes" and lets never speak of the fact that I said the word "walkman" after talking about people being outdated. Thanks.

Here it is! Ecolect Podcast #2

Thursday, March 13, 2008

ruth laskey: 7 weavings

i ran into a ruth laskey yesterday when we were both scoping out the free sandwiches at the easter egg hunt at work (please, i couldn't make this stuff up if i tried). she's one of those folks that i'm acquainted with on various levels, i've been admiring her art work since she was my senior in grad school, i managed to convince her to do our first show at the spare room project (she was very gracious, there was little convincing), and we've been library co-workers for several years, although despite sharing the same position for a while, we almost never actually see one another.

(detail of Twill Series (Avocado) via ruthlaskey.com)

anyways, i think she's great. i think her work is great. she a weaver via being a painter that began weaving to, for all intents and purposes, make her own canvases. she considers the structure that holds the paint in the same care and regard as the paint itself, and then the paint evolved into embroidery and then the image, the pattern evolved into self contained weavings. her current work is a series entitled "twill" in which she hand dyes the threads used to create the geometric patterns in the weavings. the results are quite subtle and unassuming, there is a slow and delicate tenuousness between the weightlessness of the weaving as a whole and the weight of the image, the color, the angles, woven through.
ruth has a solo show opening up this friday at ratio 3, and if you're around san francisco, you should most definitely be there. i know i will. the show is up until April 26, so you've got no excuse to miss it. and if you're not in sf, check out her website: www.ruthlaskey.com.

(detail of Twill Series (Cloud Grey) via ruthlaskey.com)

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

stop junk mail!

what a waste! save some trees by signing the do not mail petition at donotmail.org brought to you by forestethics (via planet green).

casual labor

alex clausen (image via kala.org)

a week or two ago i stopped by the 'casual labor' show at the kala art institute in berkeley after getting a lovely woodgrain show card in the mail from my friend alex (who we've been courting for our little art space). i'd never been to kala, although i'd been meaning to check it out because there is always interesting stuff coming out of their artist in residence program. the space was amazing, full of beautiful well-used and well-loved printing equiptment, and rampant with creative energy. you walk through the studio space to get to the gallery (which is what you'll be doing in our new set-up, on a much much tinier scale), which i liked very much, and thought really suited the work in the show.

zachary royer scholz (image via kala.org)

the show seemed to me to be much about doing and less about being and therefore, my cup of tea entirely. it featured Alex Clausen, Zachary Royer Scholz, and Kirk Stoller, all somewhat rough and tumble investigations about the curiousness of space and objects. i was inspired by the motion in the work, there was nothing static in the show, it made for a sort of tension in the air between the pieces.
'casual labor' is up til march 29, and if you're in the bay area, you should stop by. more info is on the kala website.

kirk stoller (image via kala.org)

Monday, March 3, 2008

green. grey. brown.

compost and greywater have been popping up a lot in projects and conversation lately. my lovely mom is taking a green gardening class with some of her friends and is setting up her very first compost bin and i'm especially proud of my folks in this endeavor. i make a lot of jokes about how my parents are the hippies of delaware because they're the only people who will spend the extra $3 a month for curbside recycling and before that they would actually take their recycling to the recycling center once a week. her last weeks class was on water conservation and we had a quick chat about low-flow showerheads (of which she apparently has some to give away after having one of the plumbers at the contractor she works for order the heads she wanted, and you had to buy at least 8 at a time). I recently picked up a niagara showerhead myself, to replace our previous low flow head, but this new one is even lower flow and has a "pause" button so you can take a military shower and not lose your water temp setting. i love it.

anyway, we talked about rain barrels and such, but the conversation took a turn before we made it to greywater, which is too bad, because i think i could have given her some tips that would've really taken their DE hippie status to the next level. we've got a bucket in our shower and under our bathroom sink, both of which are used to flush the toilet (which we generally abide by the "if it's yellow, let it mellow" standard. tmi? a little? nah.) since we've gotten the washing machine, i've been quite literally obsessing over the idea of creating a greywater wetland to filter the water so we can use it in our garden. they're actually not very complicated to make and since our washer is relatively close to hot tub room, which is where the wetland would live, it would really only require a fairly small hole to be cut through the wall of the house to put the pipe through. i know, i know, this is an over the top absurd idea for a house that we RENT, but if you could see all the, well, we'll just call them renovations, we've already done, this would seem like peas and carrots. i also had the awesome pleasure of seeing the wall to wall skateboard ramp that my friend emily's roommate is building in his bedroom, and just witnessing that someone else is out there fulfilling their bizarro, extravagant, and likely illegal projects was highly motivational. still, my wetland is only in the thinking and planning stage. i've so far resisted any urges to attain supplies so we'll talk about this further as it goes.

we have already set up our worm bin and i finished our new compost bin which doubles as a table made from a large wooden shipping crate, some metal mesh, and an old weathered fence gate door. jill ordered some red wrigglers (which they refer to as red wiggly worms at the hardware store) and got the worm bin going. the worms are now munching away on some delicious broccoli stems, sunchoke peels, and wilty greens. we're still feeling out how much they can eat and how fast, i think we might have overfed them last week, but apparently you can smell ammonia if the food isn't being processed fast enough, so I'll just keep sniffing them out to see how it goes. i'm trying to convince my mom to start a worm bin also, but after my selling point of "you can keep it under the sink" was met with a swift "ew, worms under the sink!" i think i'll have to come up with a new sales tactic.