OK... so I'm a terrbile blogger and it's been a really long time. But in my defense, nothing much has happened. Peope are still decorating tiles and contributing pennies on First Fridays at my studio. In between, I've been sealing/coating the tiles and adding them to the shrine.
The Art Side is almost finished and I'm learning a little about cutting tiles to fit in odd shaped spaces. First lesson learned about cutting tile: It's HARD! The Community Side is filling up and the Money and Compliment Sides are coming along. This month I gave more specific instructions about decorating the tiles to fit in with the themes. I specificaly asked, in a handout, not to decorate with "Jane and Joe forever nonsense" or "offensive items." I got less tiles than on a usual First Friday, but I can use all of them... and use them on the sides that need them. So it was a good night for the Penny Project!
My attention is turning now to creating the Penny Lake and Penny Fountain. And to grouting, which will be a bear of a job. Now entering it's third year, this project is far bigger than anything I anticipated. I still don't know where it will end up... I'm sticking to my "If I build it, they will come" philosophy. A PR aquaintance of mine who worked in the building where I have my studio thinks she can get City Hall to exhibit the piece once it is completed. That would, of course, be AWESOME!!! I'll keep you posted. But completion still seems a long way off. I'm a little overwhelmed, but over-all, I'm still thrilled with the project. It continues to be an incredible journey into unknown territories within my art experience. I'm learning so much.
I'm also learning so much about myself... My unwavering committment to the project and to all who have contributed... My patience (and often lack thereof) for such a long-term, ongoing project... My ability to let things develop at their own pace and as I go along... My dealings with my own limitations and inexperience is some areas... my self-doubts and insecurities... My ability to put myself out there and take risks... My discomfort in talking to and dealing with the public... The way I deal with disappointments and disinterest... My ability to accept a compliment... And especially my perseverance.
The preseverance is often difficult on so many levels. For one thing, I'm spending my own money on a piece that is not really intended or expected to sell. The tiles are expensive. The other materials are expensive. I'm not unhappy about spending the money... It's something I know I should do, but can't really explain why. I know it will benefit me somehow... not only in the learning experiences I described above, but professionally. Secondly, it is taking precious time away from my other artistic endeavors: Digital Art, Watercolor Painting, the decoupage toilet seats and the hand-painted glass... things that occasionally sell and help pay the studio rent. These are all areas I want to spend time developing my talents in. But then, the Penny Project is an Installatioin Piece and I've always wanted to do one of those too! Problem is I sometimes feel spread too thin. No, scratch that. I AM spread too thin. Third, I feel constant stress and pressure; to blog more, to physically work on it more, to spend time doing PR, to find it a "home," to promote it, and eventually to complete it which will take doing things I don't even know how to do yet! But the bottom line is this: I promised to create a piece of art from the pennies I collect, I designed this project and am happy with the design and it's significance, and I'm going to see it through! Period!
Progress Pictures to follow.