Kali has her day

(Actually, I think it is Kali’s year)

Here’s what the Kali canvas looks like after February 3rd’s open studio:

Somebody wrote on it in Arabic!  He wouldn’t tell me what it meant.  If you know, would you please tell me?

A small girl insisted on drawing a winged unicorn (with help from her mom):

And then she drew a cat:

Later in the evening, a friend told me about a cat who stole green beans whenever she cooked them.  And I told her about a cat who loved potato chips.

what it costs

The new Barbie dolls, available in more diverse colors and sizes, were a hot topic at last night’s open studio. Body image issues go so much deeper than Barbie in our culture. I’m curious to see how Barbie’s new looks will work out for her.

Other things people wanted to talk about:

  • the perennial “how much do these sculptures cost?”
  • the accompanying “what do you mean, you’re not selling them???”


I don’t like talking about it, partly because talking about money tends to be uncomfortable (I remember all too well what it feels like not to have any money, and how much I would have hated someone like me back then) and partly because it is old news to me. And also because how much a piece of art costs is generally the least interesting thing about it.

But in the middle of one of these conversations about not selling my work, an interesting thing happened. A young acquaintance of mine was expressing dismay at the idea that she’d never be able to own one of my sculptures. And I said that if she would model for me, she could have one that would be shaped like her. And it seemed like she might actually be into that.

“Really???” she asked. “You’re not just saying that?”

Really. I got goosebumps, thinking that it might happen. This is something I’ve been thinking about for a while. A few years ago I wrote:

Or maybe, if I’m feeling more generous, I’ll offer to cover her in plaster and help her tell the truth about her own body and what goes on inside it.

So this is what it costs:

  • You have to get topless and let me cover you in plaster from hip to shoulder.
  • You have to tell me a story.
  • And then you have to wait, because these things take time.

I’ll do my best to translate your story into a sculpture.  When I’m finished, I’ll have it professionally photographed. And then you can take it home and give it to your boyfriend or hang it in your dining room or run over it with a tractor or whatever.



September open studio

I’ve heard that a lot of people are moving their First Friday festivities to the second Friday this month because this is Labor Day weekend. Here in Studio 221 at the Tip Top Building, we are committed to celebrating First Friday on the actual First Friday of the month.

So if you want to pick up your Inner Beauty Passport and help kick off the marvelous Julie Püttgen‘s Inner Beauty Pilgrimage to the Sacred-Ordinary Everywhere, tomorrow is the day to do it! If you show up on the 11th, you will be disappointed because we will be somewhere else. Also, you probably will have missed your last opportunity to see my studio in 2015.

Claim your Inner Beauty Passport, and reclaim the full story of your many aspects! Remember all the places you’ve gone, and the people you’ve been. It’s like a spiritual foot massage.


Visit the fabulous Safety Closet! Turn off your phone. Sit down for a minute and breathe. Take in the fact that nobody is currently trying to clobber you.


And … see the newly moth-proofed butterfly soup!



inner beauty treatment #109

2 of the 3 sculptures that I took down for moth-proofing are back up. I’m getting ready for an open studio on September 4th. The delightfully odd and mostly harmless Julie Püttgen will be joining me in the studio to kick off her Inner Beauty Pilgrimage to the Sacred Ordinary Everywhere, and we will unveil the Inner Beauty Passports we’ve been cooking up.

Julie has a list of 108 Inner Beauty Treatments on her website. Here is one more, designed by my flinchiest Inner Tyrant:

Find a safe place to lie down, preferably on the floor. Put on some music, preferably something without too many words. Turn it up loud enough to fill your ears, but not loud enough to hurt. If it’s going to bother your cat, put on headphones.

Lie down. Get as comfortable as you can. Put a pillow under your knees, and one under your head.

Put something over your eyes – a sleep mask, a scarf, a folded-up sock. If you like, put a bag of beans or rice on your chest.

Breathe slowly, then even more slowly. Make the out breath at least as long as the in breath. With every out breath, feel yourself sinking into the floor.

Imagine that the music is washing your ears. All the things that have gotten stuck in your ears – the screeches of small children, the rumble of motorcycles, the crinkle of potato chip bags –  are floating away.

Listen. Breathe. Sink.

All of this is optional. If you feel like dancing, do that instead.

thank you


(photo made with an iPhone and a Lensbaby LM-10 during a lull in last night’s frantic socializing)

Thank you for coming to the open studio.

Thank you for eating cupcakes with me, for inspiring me, for looking at my work and showing me yours.

Thank you for reminding me that it’s almost always worth opening the door.

If you wanted to talk to me and didn’t get a chance, I’m sorry.

You all made my week.  I’m so glad it didn’t snow last night.

February open studio

It has been six months since my last open studio. I didn’t announce that one, which was stupid.  So here’s an announcement for the next one.  It’ll be February 6th, 2015, from 5 to 9pm.  My studio is in the Tip Top building, at 85 North Main Street in semi-lovely downtown White River Junction, VT.

There will be cupcakes.  I hope somebody shows up to help me eat them!


May open studio

Sometimes I am really bad about publicizing my open studios.  People have complained about it, which is fair.  I don’t have open studios every month.  The least I could do is be consistent about telling you that they’re happening.

So if you are reading this, consider yourself notified that I will be having an open studio this Friday, May 2, from 5 to 9 pm.  Yippee!

Here are some things I’ve finished since my last open studio:

happy birthday

how bees work