Friday, April 15, 2005

of birthdays, books, taxes, rape and child abuse

What do the above all have in common? Read on and re-live the past 24 hours...

Today is Derb's birthday and her precious son, my nephew, celebrates his birthday this week as well! Happy Birthday, beautiful family of mine! If I don't find you today, I will this weekend!

As for books, I finished the cover for my book sculpture. Here is the cover on its own:

I stained it with coffee and grounds and the holes in it are there so that I may incorporate twigs into the piece later.

This is the "cover" with the book set into the spine:

The next step will be to actually bind the pages to the sculptural cover. To do so, I drilled holes on either side of the spine when it was in the greenware stage.

I was up late creating my next bowl forms-after I double and triple checked our tax forms! We're getting a refund for the first time in many years and I wanted to be absolutely sure I had made no mistakes that would create a problem later. When these dry, I will shoot and upload some of those images.

There is one bowl form that I am using that I am particularly fascinated with. It is an old, eliptical melamine bowl that I have been using repeatedly for a mold. Repetition with variation can be a very satifying element to play with. This is the bowl from with a repeating void:

This piece is made of a low-fire clay body to which I added approximately 20% paper pulp. I will fire some of them, but for now, I enjoy the suede-like surface that results from lightly sanding the greenware.

That said, I'll talk about sexual assault and child abuse. Having specifically addressed my own experience with rape in my work, I was invited to serve as part of a forum on domestic abuse here in the valley. I am swamped and initially hesitated, but then decided to seriously reconsider as I feel very strongly about stepping up when I see a need. I quickly changed my mind when I was told that we would have to "be careful" about what we said. I suppose a certain amount of decorum and sensitivity is a good idea, but I was getting the impression that we were not supposed to upset anyone!

I explained that if I was expected to be that careful, then why do the work, have these conversations at all. Our time might be better spent hanging out together in like-minded groups bitching and moaning about how awful it all is and challenging no one! I do respect the work of the people involved (very much, in fact!) but I'm not convinced that these attitudes are not the red-headed stepchild of the idea that we should feel ashamed for what has befallen us as survivors. I learned a very long time ago that it is our secrets that keep us sick and I have paid a great price for my shame-and the shame of others. I committed years ago to not enable these attitudes. It has to stop somewhere.

And now.. I have 30 minute to shower and get outta here! I have lectures and more meetings to attend! My sisters used to tease me about my schedule. Now, the growing jokes are about the increasing amout of time I am in meetings... and more meetings.

And more meetings...

In all sincerity, I have a fabulous life.

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