Your work is “beautiful”…
This is a common response that I get about my work. Is saying art is beautiful a (backhanded) compliment? Does it flatten the work? Make it have less depth? Is beauty a bad thing?
In thinking about beauty I also started thinking about ugliness and if that gives work more depth. In searching I found this article Ugliness Is Underrated: In Defense of Ugly Paintings by Katy Kelleher.
I found it extremely interesting that our neurological response to ugly and beauty lights up the same parts of our brains.
“Beauty does not occupy a different area of the brain than ugliness. Both are part of a continuum representing the values the brain attributes to them.” Although we experience them differently, beauty and ugliness both tap into our emotional center, an area deeply involved in analyzing other’s motives and actions and generating both sympathy and empathy.
There is something about commissions I find extremely special and rewarding. They are always a little nerve-racking while you are making them, but the reward is worth it. It is a massive compliment to me and my work when people want a custom piece to fill their space. Especially for their bedroom. For me, that is such an intimate space where our inner worlds come to life. Having my art be a part of that makes my heart warm.
If you are interested in a custom piece for your space please reach out!
6 colorful pieces created in the mountain town of Banff will preview at Root’d in Park City for Sundance.
ROOT’D OPENING RECEPTION
Friday, January 25 from 3-7 PM
596 Main Street
Park City, Utah
If you are unable to attend, feel free to request an online preview. All art is for sale.
One of my goals this year is to have a more dedicated sketchbook practice. I’ve been feeling a little unmotivated with my painting series so getting back into drawing from observation seemed like a useful activity. As I was drawing this sage bundle that’s in my studio, I was thinking a lot about rituals. As artist, we talk about the daily rituals that help us establish our creative space and initiate our practice.
The ritualization of the mundane invites the mind to settle into the body. It creates opportunities to get quiet, to feel honestly, to look inward in a world that is begging us to look elsewhere. Over time, it can help us connect to spirit and share it with those around us.
– The Spirit Almanac
I am unsure of how this practice will inform something more significant but I see a path, and it’s calling me to move down it. There is a nugget. A piece to explore. Keep drawing. Research rituals.
Be what you are, of the earth, but a dreamer too.
I’ve liked the yearly word mantra approach instead of resolutions, for 2018 mine was SETTLE. After three years of moving four times, five different jobs and shifting our lives I was ready to sink my feet in and be in one place physically and beyond. The word settle became my grounding rhythm.
In 2018 I claimed the title of “artist.” My art studio was entirely built out, and I covered the floors in paint. It was my first full year of flipping between freelance and my art practice. I found my flow in the studio but with life as well. I no longer used google maps to find my way around town, I learned the names of my yoga teachers, and our house felt like home. With these grounding elements, I was able to stretch my art practice and focus on accomplishing some goals. I had my first big solo show in Portland and various group showings as well. My artwork got published in Maker's Magazine, and I had two artist features that allowed me to open up and talk about my practice. I met and began to build an artist community for myself. These steps, little and big have created a solid foundation for me and my work. I produced over 40 pieces of art. Stretched and started a lot more.
Light, dark. Good, bad. Nothing is black or white. We exist in the greyscale. 2018 also brought a lot of lows. I was rejected (well, waitlisted on one) from every residency I applied to and several shows as well. My mental and emotional health crashed in the spring. All the significant shifts finally caught up to me, and my depression was in full force. I was sorting out health issues alongside this (man, it's all connected) but rounded a corner by May.
All the way through, I've felt good about my work and my practice. I've seen it evolve and improve and I am looking forward to building upon this momentum. I enter 2019 feeling mentally and physically sound. I've started to write various proposals and let's just say the ideas are brewing. I am excited for this year and what changes it may bring.
This year I will lean on the word ACCEPTANCE. I appreciate the nuance of the dictionary meaning and psychological meanings (self-acceptance especially). I hope that becoming more in tune with this word I can set more boundaries for myself and put my energy into things I can control and not ones I cannot. There will be a lot of letting go and coming to terms.
2019, here we go.
“The Big Dark is a cloud … you appreciate it for reminding you that there is an above and a below. You could think of it like you think of a condition — something ominous or something pestering but also something you get used to, that you can’t do without.”
- The Big Dark at Fourteen30 Contemporary
A collection of larger works will be on view in Luke’s Frame Shop Gallery in the Albina location for the month of February.
Saturday, February 2, 2019 from 6-8 PM
4703 North Albina Avenue
If you are unable to attend, you can request an online preview.
All art is for sale.
Have really enjoyed reading through Saltz notes and thoughts around how to be an artist. Refreshing and also some fun exercises.
Excited to be selling freshly finished planters from APOTSPOT x CLAIBORNE collab. Limited quantities (27 in total) in all shapes and sizes. Come swing by the shop and say hi.
Saturday, December 15 from 2-7 PM
1015 E. Burnside Street
How did art making first find its way into your life?
Ever since I could hold a pencil. I've been scribbling, scrawling, and making marks my entire life. I used to lock myself in my parents' room and watch drawing shows on PBS – shout out to Mark Kistler's Imagination Station.
I wasn't a strong student in the traditional sense. I was in the slow reading groups and was awful at standardized test. But I got a lot of positive feedback from art teachers. My second-grade teacher pulled my parents aside and told them not to ignore my art. Ever since then they've always supported my gravitation towards the art room.
So excited that Piper included me on her store roster. Such an amazing space - thrilled to see where she takes it. The store will be open on the weekends and she just posted her online store as well. Check out all the goods here:
Man, time flies. It's been a month since Inner Weather was uninstalled and I'm still dreaming of those warm days transforming a garage. Jen + Lauren at Gallery 1122 were so amazing and great collaborators. Here are some install shots from the show.
As late fall and winter approaches, I am gearing up for my solo shows in January and February. For the January show, I am looking to have large pieces alongside some pots for sale. Taking next week off to enjoy some time on the San Juans and then Seattle with the family and then back in the studio to get after it.
Root’d: What medium/materials do you work with?
Claiborne: I work with acrylic, graphite, and pastels on raw cotton canvas or watercolor paper.
R: How long have you been “making”?
C: Ever since I could hold a pencil. I’ve been scribbling, scrawling, and making marks my entire life.
R: Where do you draw your greatest inspiration?
C: From nature. Being outside and active has always recharged my energies. It makes me feel connected to something bigger and gives me perspective. I love to observe nature through an artistic eye and imagine how I would paint and interpret different landscapes.
R: Who was your biggest supporter in starting out?
C: When I was young, my second-grade teacher told my parents not to ignore my creativity. Apparently, I was really good at drawing trees. Since then, my parents have wholeheartedly supported me and never questioned my artistic path. In my adult life, my partner has always made a point to prioritize my career in arts. He’s my No. 1 Fanboy, and it’s honestly amazing to have that shared goal as we continue to build our lives together.
R: What would be your suggestion for someone stuck in a creative rut?
C: Go outside, take a walk around the block and change your perspective. Then get back in the studio, chair, whatever and make something. Even if it’s terrible, make it and move on.
R: What’s your favorite part about doing what you do?
C: I’m always learning something new or improving a skill. I feel like a detective honing in on a craft. I also get to spend a lot of time with myself. I love being independent and self-sufficient. It requires a lot of self-awareness – it’s as much a challenge as it is a reward, but it’s worth it.
R: How do you best stay focused on goals for your company?
C: I’ve started setting short and long-term goals and check in with myself often. Writing it down makes it real and something concrete to plan towards. I love checking off boxes or scratching through something when I am finished. It’s silly, but it gives a sense of accomplishment and motivates me to do more and more.
R: Do you have a favorite piece? If so, share a photo with us!
C: Right now I really like this 30” x 30” piece I named Black Tupelo. The black has a lot of depth, and I love how it is offset with the burnt umber color. Even though there is strong darkness, it still feels joyful. I really like the interplay between opposites and how they complement one another.
I don’t think I’ll ever get over the excitement of seeing work installed in a show. Loving this ethereal setup of Drink Me a group show at H Gallery in Ventura, California.
When you work with a wet medium, you have a lot of dry time (aka down time). I literally can't just sit there and watch paint dry. Having a side project has been an engaging way to expand my art practice. It gives me a space to experiment and play.
I initially met Claire (Apotspot) via another rad creative Elsa (aka Flora Noble) who organized a group show based around adding art on top of Claire's concrete planters. I put off the project for a while. I had the planters on my working table staring at me and reminding me that I didn't know what to do. After some solid thumb-twiddling, I found my flow once I got some acrylic pens.
With my art practice, I am interested in translating the landscape around me. The concrete pot's that Claire makes have such a fantastic texture that they become a map of their own. Adding my layer on top built an additional map overlay of sorts. A lot of the obsessions I have around repetition, contrast, and value appear naturally within the concrete. Our styles amplify the other. Plus, houseplants are my jam. I'm actively trying to convert my home into a jungle.
a p o t s p o t x c l a i b o r n e
We decided to collaborate for reelz and will be selling the planters at the Portland store Bedizen. Here is a preview. Get in touch if you're interested in buying one. It is a limited quantity run, but maybe we'll do more if this batch goes well.
Last Friday I had the crew from 1122 Gallery (Jen & Lauren) as well as fellow artist Abbie Miller over to the studio to chat work and brainstorm for my show in September. It was so refreshing to talk around concepts of surface, flattening and translating space and wayfinding.
1122 Gallery is an immersive and experimental art space. I am excited to have my work go beyond the canvas and reimagine and translate the gallery as a whole.
SHOW OPENING PARTY
FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 14 6-10PM
I am obsessed with light. How it changes our lens on the world. How golden hour becomes magic hour. Light creates shadows. The lightness and darkness flicker, flash, and flow through our purview. Always in motion subtly and sometimes drastically changing what and how we see.
Not your white cube show. Going beyond the canvas to re-imagine the gallery space.
September 14 - October 8
1122 SE 88th Ave
1122 is a community art gallery located in a garage in the Montavilla neighborhood.