• Art Making
  • Eye Balling and Free Falling

    “Portrait of the Artist Listening to Music,” by Howard Hodgkin (Photo: Miriam Perez) Note: Hodgkin passed away on March 9, 2017. I am just back from a week of art viewing in London—special museum exhibitions including Michelangelo, Robert Rauschenberg, Wolfgang Tillmans, David Hockney, Howard Hodgkins, Eduardo Paolozzi and Elton John‘s estimable collection of photographs, plus […]

  • Art Making
  • Benedictions

    Sally Mann (Photo: Liz Liguori) Finding fully immersive distractions to defend against the relentlessly ugly political news has become a daily ritual. Like so many others, I go out each day in search of sustenance in a landscape that has been ravaged by the locusts of lies, hatred and distrust. Protecting the inner landscape and […]

  • Art Making
  • Pfaffability

    Judy Pfaff at Wheaton College Judy Pfaff is an artist’s artist. Perhaps I should be more specific and say she is my kind of artist’s artist. And “my kind of artist” is a much bigger category than me and my friends. Legions of us have followed her for years, and we keep being compelled, enthralled, […]

  • Art Making
  • When a Stack of Bowls is a Chord

    Edmund de Waal installation currently on view at the Princeton Museum With the publication and international success of his family memoir, The Hare With Amber Eyes, Edmund de Waal became a literary sensation before many knew he was, first and foremost, an artist whose specialty is ceramics. Notoriety tends to spills over, and soon his […]

  • Art Making
  • Time, Information Management and Art Making

    Advertisement seen in China last year A few ideas have been perennially circulating in my thinking lately. One is that consensus reality is overrated. I am increasingly interested in connecting with what might be termed the invisible elements of life. The other is that the perpetual 24/7 news cycle that permeates our lives is more […]

  • Art Making
  • Making Space

    Early morning light, South Boston The ease of viewing contemporary work today is staggering. The steady flow of images on Facebook, Instagram and online art sites brings thousands of images from all over the globe into easy view every day. When I first started as an artist, new work came to me through two or three […]

  • Art Making
  • Sleep On It

    Installation by Jan Baker, RISD Kyna Leski is a teacher, architect and artist. Her book, The Storm of Creativity, is a thoughtful journey through the process of bringing something into form that does not yet exist. Leski does not take an authoritative approach, gratefully, and she leaves lots of room for her “map” to speak […]

  • Art Making
  • The Right Way

    “Guardians of the Secret”, collage by Barry Swyers, an artist and friend who passed away earlier this year. Artist Ben La Rocco in conversation with Craig Olson, on Hyperallergic: There is some kind of confusion in my nature with regard to received methods of doing things. I’ve always had it. I’m left handed, mildly dyslexic […]

  • Art Making
  • Whales, Horses and the Hand

    In praise of the hand (found on a trip to India several years ago) Laurie Fendrich (painter/writer partnered with painter/writer Peter Plagens,) has written thoughtfully about the concept of a “mature” or “signature” style. “All serious painters, no matter the quality of their work, inevitably end up with a mature style,” she wrote in the […]

  • "Don't know mind"
  • Let the Mystery Be

    “Tezoom”, from a new series that seems to have a mind of its own In an interview with the artist Claerwen James, she was asked about what useful advice she received while she was a student: One was from Bernard Cohen who was director of the Slade at the time. During a lecture he said, […]