More summertimes…

And more travel…

Pacific and Atlantic oceans. Some woods, some waterfalls, some rivers, some hotsprings.

And more adventures to come.
And a book about it, of course.

Time to put some paint on those collaged pages! Then into the sewing machine, more paint, some drawing, then to sew it up!

Ah August.

K

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2014 is going to be great!

Wow, it’s 2014!

We made it!!!

How did you celebrate the turning of the Gregorian calendar?

We are at the bottom of the darkness too, with solstice well through! Don’t forget to eat a lot of oranges to bring sun into your life!
It’s coming back! It’s on it’s way!

I started my year by beginning my resolutions early, on New Year’s Eve, and drew, wrote, went to the park (in snow flurries), exercised, meditated and ate good food. New York New Years is crazy downtown so I stayed up in beautiful Harlem. I’d traveled to see my family for a couple short days (i hope to go back for longer this summer and see more people and places, dang time and it’s fleeting nature) and came back on the morning of new years eve. Coming back to the city was weird (I left my heart near San Francisco, as they say), but my New Year’s Eve was grounding and great.

New Year’s Day was all sleep and brunch, babysitting, drawing, and hanging out – a good year so far.

I hope your new year is everything you want it to be! I hope it’s epic and adventurous! I hope it’s fun and productive! I hope you get stronger and more in touch with your goals so you can accomplish them! I hope you work hard and play hard and live your life to its best and most awesome potential. Lets rock this thing! This is going to be a great year.

XOK

PS Come take a class with me, I’m teaching Linoleum/Woodcut Printmaking at the City College of New York this coming term. Thursday mornings come learn how to block print like a champ! It’s going to be hella for real fun, and the best thing ever!

PSS Here are a few adventure pictures! Life is good. Let’s make some art now! And go outside! Yay! Ok!

PSSS Have you heard the new Angel Haze album? I can not stop listening to it! And did you see Jean Grae’s online tv show? So cool!!! Dang.

PSSSS The rad artist I work for is having a show soon, more info to come! April, Chelsea, be there!

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Easty Times (not easy times).

Wow!
My second year of grad school starts tomorrow. I can’t believe it!

Yeah, here is a post in which I’m making up for the coming months, in which I will barely have enough time for eating nutritionally helpful things, let alone time to blog.

I recently heard a term which might describe that period (between sept 1 and dec 21)… crapalanche. It will just be overwhelming, not bad. The busy times are coming. Apologies in advance for any grumpitude I may display.

Anyhow, the other day (monday, they are actually open mondays!) I went to MoMA and saw some great art, embroidered flags, interactive fabric (scheduled) sculptures folded into bundles that had great washy drawn diagrams, quay brothers dioramas, and a bunch of stuff I had never seen before. Here is a link but I’m doing this in the telephone way so you will have to poke around the website: http://www.moma.org/m#exhibition1238.

And the days before that I was in Connecticut, camping and being soggy and then staying at a hotel on the coast. It was gorgeous, so I wanted to share a few pictures.

The stone walls impressed me, as a west coaster, these 300 year old walls from the settling/logging/farming of this coast back in the 1700s. The forest has grown back in much of the area, but the old stone walls are still there, marking old property lines. Slowly crumbling.

Gorgeousness everywhere in this world.

So here we go! Into deep thoughts and my best damn work. And I hope your fall is wonderful and warm.

XoK

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Hometown

I just visited my hometown, Santa Cruz California. I love and miss it. I saw some people I hadn’t for a decade, and some I’d seen more recently… overall it was full of love and cool air and nature and real produce and has helped bolster me for another New York year.
My family and friends are such wonderful people! I didn’t get to see enough of them, but I saw enough to make my heart feel more regular. New York is too far from California.
I miss it so much already! The only thing that seems to calm me down is situps, which are distracting from the sewing I need to do. It’s worth it though, since I’m having a hard time adjusting to being back so far.
Oh well.
I just got back, so I will get used to it soon.

xok

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Rockawayish Beach Adventure

Hi!

Recently I went to the beach with one of my favorite people ever. We planned on going to Rockaway, so took the train there. But we didn’t get off and take the shuttle train down that way (I’d only been once and it was her 1st time – we watched all of the people with cooler bags and flipflops get off the train then looked at the map) so ended up just getting off after we realized this, when we found a stop that looked close to the water.

There didn’t seem to be much around where we were, for new york being so populated, we walked by a school, and some construction. Some giant apartment buildings were visible in the close distance. But the train was very close to the beach, we got off at B36 but ended up at B35. B for beach!

We walked down a street that began to crumble as we moved toward the ocean, the sidewalk disappearing, cracked, in weeds and wildflowers. Families holding towels walked this way too, all of us walking in the street when the sidewalk ended.

We walked up onto that long wooden boardwalk for a bit, realizing this was probably the origin of that ‘under the boardwalk’ song! I grew up in a town with a theme park, The Boardwalk, so I always thought that’s where the song came from. But miles of slatted wood walkway creating the only shade on this long and desolate beach really seems like a better reason.

We sat on the empty beach for a bit (there were less than 50 people on all of the beach we could see in either direction – this is new york so that was really weird), picnicked, jumped around in the water for a while and then realized there were 100000000s of tiny live squirmy multicolored clams floating in the water, with their siphons out and wiggling. So we stopped that jumping on the millions of mollusks part. It was weird to see so many floating violet, pink, and yellow clams.

By this time it was too hot, even under the boardwalk, so after a little more walking we headed back to the more populated parts of New York City.

Here are a few pictures, what a fun and fabulous day!

Take care!
XOK

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I want to visit abandoned things in New York please

Hi!

New york is old right. Really old. Well the world is old, but New York was settled by people of european descent so long ago it makes the west coast seem young. Heck, the last city I lived in was founded 5 years before the school I currently attend. What I mean by founded is that it wasn’t incorporated as a eurodriven, oregon trail traveling, “granny in a bustle sitting in the bucketseat shooting people out the window” kind of way until 3 years later, in 1851. My home town was founded earlier (as a mission settlement, yeah California was like that, the crusades or whatever) but still 1791 is quite a bit later than New York’s 1624. So, that crazy starved stinky murderous euro-trek across the continent took a while. And some people lived in cabins and tents and sod homes instead of solid gothic architecture, like for example, The College of the City of New York.

I have always love ruined things, since my childhood visiting lyme kilns on the  UCSC campus, or even visiting the ‘mosquito cave’ and abandoned house on my growing-up street. But on the west coast we (yes, it’s  still we) don’t have as many old abandoned structures that have held up. There were wooden gold rush towns in dry places that stuck around, but most are non-tourist spots that are deteriorating, and there are not as many steel and stone things. Not as many as in New York.

So now that I’ve finished my last class of the school year I’m researching places to visit. I need to get out of the city this summer (not that I don’t like it here, well, it’s actually kicking my butt, but I will prevail!). And I have so many options, even for a woman with no car.

I’ve found a lot of internet information about the abandoned, so I’ve listed and described a little of it here – in case you are a nerd of the broken, like I am.

This an awesome overall view of some ruins (and mapping) in the Hudson Valley, by a man who put out a gorgeous photo book about this topic: http://www.hudsonvalleyruins.org/rinaldi/PAGES/HVR-MAIN.htm, and through the clickable map on this site I found a Landmarks list of buildings in the city (though these are in-city buildings which are landmarked, and are harder to get in to, and mostly more intact). There are examples listed from all over the city (even my area), but not things like this abandoned school in my neighborhood: http://www.nytimes.com/2010/08/03/nyregion/03harlem.html.  Landmark status is an interesting challenge for some building owners, there are restrictions, old school laws, and someone has to file which I believe costs something… so in the end many old buildings become controversial or confusing to their communities. I was recently outside this school with an old friend – looking through the fence, and a man walked by and told us he’d gone to the school 40 years previous! And about 2 minutes later some young women walked by and asked us about it (we were still looking at it, it’s gorgeous). We all wanted to go in, all of us, but it was the middle of the day and it’s a little sketchy, with a tall wonky chained up fence, many plastic bags caught in the trees that grow from it’s windows, and pried up plywood on the ground floor windows and doors that aren’t bricked up. Of course some good photographers have already gone inside: http://www.bluejake.com/2009/01/an-abandoned-school-in-harlem.html It’s just gorgeous!

This is a really cool one, The New York Farm Colony, it’s looks huge! http://kensinger.blogspot.com/2011/04/new-york-city-farm-colony.html This website is full of gorgeous photographs of broken buildings and ruined built up areas also, so poke around.

This is great! http://www.scoutingny.com/?p=3708#more-3708 The location in this post, and others on the site! There are so many gorgeous photos here. I would love to visit this old manor. And there are some amazing historical photos in the post. It’s wonderful to read about the history of the place, and the history of it’s deterioration.

There is other good stuff about history on this website too. I particularly liked the video about the high bridge. It’s so cool that some of these disused structures are being revamped. Probably in part inspired New York City’s gorgeous Highline Park, the high bridge is slated to reopen in 2013, as a walkway across the Harlem River, from Manhattan to the Bronx, and a couple of much needed riverfront park areas. I love learning about projects that will improve the lives of those of us who live uptown!!! http://www.thirteen.org/thecityconcealed/

This is pretty good, but it’s by a shoe company so there are a lot of shots of the host’s shoes (but I have some really good boots from this co.)… http://www.palladiumboots.com/video/ruins-new-york#part1

And, of course, here is a description of the ruined smallpox hospital on Roosevelt Island, it’s gorgeous, and there are some pictures of it from a visit I made in 2009 or so on this blog. And here is some of the history of the place. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Smallpox_Hospital,

Forgotten New York has a great collection of historical information. Actually it is completely vast, but this is post really struck me. Gorgeous ruins: http://forgotten-ny.com/2004/03/the-ruins-of-rossville/. And they do tours! I want to go on one! I’m excited to “keep checking back” on the page that lists the tour dates/times, to see when they post one. A tour would really help me, since I’m new here and haven’t much time to explore.

Well, darlings, that’s what I found in my first couple hours of un-art-related brainstorm about what I want to do now that I’m out of school for a couple of months. Well, that and make so much good art I explode, and also find a good temp art related job.

Take care! And don’t forget to watch where you step, it may be rusted through.

xok

water coming in

dear you,

did you know that my life seems sometimes to be marked by a series of small floods. strange thing, they keep happening.

starting with occasional creek overflows, that would block passage in or out of the small wooded street where i grew up. over and over, and i seem to have thought it was a tide, word of mouth says.

there have been the studio leaks, each of my gorgeous warehouse studios in portland oregon leaking from ceilings at various times. my basement studios have leaked from the walls, windowframes or doors. tarps and rearrangement kept these floods from inflicting major damage (although i lost paintings, great vintage east german paintbrushes, and unfired ceramics – depending on the timeframe).

the car i recently sold (after driving it for maybe 8 years) had a leak from it’s back hatch’s seal, often flooding the car’s backend. that leak started 6odd years after i got the car. no idea.

then just yesterday, about 10 minutes before i got home from an afternoon at chelsea galleries (among other adventures), the ceiling of the bathroom of my new apartment sprung a leak. a column of water poured from a light fixture! the super stopped the leak quickly, but what a flood it was! i am glad i got home on time to call the right people at the right time. and to go upstairs and let the nice lady above me know what was going on. she is old and didn’t hear the water from the burst pipe pouring from under her sink… i’d gone to see if her bathtub was overflowing or something… but no, it was a broken pipe. mucho agua to be sure.

i hope this theme does not continue. although i believe that it will inform my artwork very soon.

as a child i dreamt of drowning often. various combinations of creeks , swimming pools, hot tubs swelling to trap me; falling into the sea from wharfs or boats; tipping over backwards in streams and sinking; boats i was sitting in filling up with water; that sort of thing, over and over. and i can only hope that these dreams do not prove to be my only psychic correctness.

alright, enough of that watery talk for now.

best to you, where you are.

k

snow salad (aka farming in the snow)

Hello there.

Some people have asked me to blog about farming more. I will! It’s fun for me in many ways.

It is a really cool thing, being part of an organic farm (we’re certified naturally grown, a grassroots alternative to certified organic). It warms my heart.

Yes, we get to eat some of the amazing food that we grow. Like I am going to make a soup from a jumbo pink banana squash soon. We grew it! It’s huge and pink, but the inside is bright yellow. I am so excited!

But farming is hard too.

Like today, I harvested greens in the snow. It was really cold. And my fingers didn’t fall off, but they were kind of tingly. It was ok, everyone involved is ok. I thought about the request for farm related blogs, and I had to write about this.

It was beautiful. The snow was wet and came down in those clumpy balls, downy, heavy. I guess it was snow showers. Off and on. Out in Warren. It was maybe 36 degrees, and I had so many layers on! Shirts, pants, gloves (fingerless – ya have to feel the greens to pick them right), a hat, a scarf… So I was ok. But cold! We picked chicories, lovely greens that are alright in the cold. And I realized that I might be suited for the tropics. Except that pesky bright sun part.

People have been farming in the snow forever. We have to farm in whatever weather is happening. I don’t think this is written about too often. People still need food, whatever the weather is like.

Farm work is hard. No one ever said it wasn’t, but I think it gets abstracted sometimes. No, we are not sitting and playing in the dirt. We are working hard for long hours.

I think it is really fun! And I love the hard parts, like rototilling by hand, wheelhoeing paths between beds fast until your head is spinning and then quick quick pitchforking up chunks of rooty sod leftover from wheelhoeing. I love kneeling and hacking at weeds with this nice japanese knife hoe thing, and swearing about whatever issue is bugging me. I love pulling plants that have bolted or bloomed, then throwing them in a wheelbarrow and into a compost pile. It’s kind of like dancing, and also like backwards situps while standing up. I love seeding and planting starts, watching things grow. Magical exercises.

But it is hard, physically. Don’t forget. Farmers get dirt in their eyes and blisters and frostbite and, yes, excellent muscle tone.

I just wanted to say this so, if you have romantic notions about farming, you will know. You’d better like to exercise and you’d better have good work ethic.

I am glad to have put in some good work today, even though it was snowing.

Thanks for supporting farmers by eating!

xoxo,
Katie