ends and beginnings

I emptied my thread ends box today. It held the threads that didn't get used on a piece this year. These threads were active players without a field to play in. They came into existence at the end of thoughts rather than the beginnings. They got snipped off and thrown to the side after trying hard to be part of the team. There are a lot of them.

I've grown used to not being satisfied with each and every work that I create. Like these thread ends some work just doesn't work. The process of creating has become more important to me than the finishing up. For each work that gets finished I estimate that there are two or three pieces that get thrown under the table. Thus, I have fallen in love with my rotary cutter, it facilitates my cut-up-and-rework frame of mind. I am beginning to see a signature style in all of the work. I am drawn to black. I like surprises and there is an undertow of anxiety in all of them.

Cut-up-and-rework pieces

I named the work I finished: Aquifer, Beast, Chaos Ensues, Focus on Something Else, Glyphs, I Need a Third Eye, Ladder to Elsewhere, Looking for the Pattern that Connects, Signals, Thugs, Unglued, and Unmapped.

Some finished pieces

And now I am working on a piece called Ship of Fools.

Ship of Fools work in progress

2018 will be filled with new challenges: a one man show at a local art museum, a proposal to a local venue for a juried show in Memphis, several teaching positions and days and days of continuing my work. It's those last items that I look forward to the most. They provide a silence and thoughtfulness that fills me up.

Happy New Year everyone. Hope to meet some of you this year in workshops. Check out the listings at the right for dates and locations.

May your studio be filled with inspiration and your days full of mystery and wonder.

It's in our nature.

I've been thinking about dysfunction. Siblings, political parties, major corporations, government, non-profit agencies — they all experience a little wrack and ruin over time. Personality conflicts, power grabs, bullying, and just plain incompetence can splinter the foundation of any assemblage.

It's in our nature.

So how do we face and focus on mending? It's clear we all need the balm of empathy. We need to find common ground to forge compromise and progress.

Haywire, Paula Kovarik, 2017

We need to clear the air and listen. Speak truth to power and allow for differences.

Ladder to Elsewhere, Paula Kovarik, 2017

I say we act like crabgrass. Move with energy into the cracks. Sew up the middles so that the edges have a base to grow on.

Rough layout for Crabgrass, Paula Kovarik