The Bain Project

May 19, 2009 at 2:05 am (Art Unravelled)

Last weekend my family and I had the pleasure to step back in time. For the last two weekends, the Ernest Bain Waterworks Plant was re-opened. Originally built in 1939 in true Art Deco style, the plant closed in 1987. After twently years of neglect, 12-artists, including Marty Baird, Luke Buchanan, Jen Coon, Tim Kiernan, Stacey L. Kirby, Lee Moore, Lia Newman, Sarah Powers and Dana Raymond, “cleaned out, dug up and revamped areas of the Bain plant to convert it into an installation art exhibit, using the whole location as one big found object.”
An electrical engineer, my husband’s favorite part of the exhibit was the power distribution and the controls. My favorite part was the filter gallery and the hidden rooms up the winding stairs that housed much of the installation. In some of the rooms it was hard to tell what was art and what was the result of age and neglect.

My only critique of The Bain Project is that it only lasted two weekends. We were there on the last day, along with hundreds of people and I felt like the word was just getting out. Apparently there are plans to renovate the building and turn it into shops and restaurants. For at least a weekend though we had a glimpse into the past.



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The Lives Our Mothers Leave Us

May 6, 2009 at 2:06 am (Artist Musings)

“Even if our mothers are gone, they are never gone from us. If we search our internal landscapes, we find them—sometimes etched as delicately as a watermark, sometimes as deep as an engraving.” Patti Davis, The Lives Our Mother’s Leave Us
Over the last few years, I have had the pleasure of meeting a number of fabulous artists. The one common thread amongst them all is that they all credit their mothers for inspiring their creativity. So, on this week when we honor our mothers, I felt it was only appropriate to dedicate this week’s post to my mother.
If you read last week’s post, you know that I credit my grandmother for my love of ephemera. The creative gene, however, comes solely from my mother. As a kid, she empowered me to try, while giving me the permission to fail, always reminding me that she would be proud of me either way. When I wanted to host my own teenage talk show at the age of 16, she told me to go for it. As a junior in college, when I wanted to go to New York to intern for a network television show, she encouraged me to apply. So, it should have come as no surprise that when I became an artist, she was right there cheering me on. She was there for my first art show five years ago, braving the freezing rain under a flooded tent as we celebrated selling my first bracelet. Two years later she accompanied me to my biggest show to date, the American Craft Council Show in Baltimore. As a kid, she never missed a recital. As an adult, she never misses an opening. Even if she can’t be there in person due to the miles between us, she always lets me know she is there in spirit with a bouquet of flowers and a perfectly penned note to calm my nerves.
I remember as a child, my mother’s paintings hanging on the walls of our house. When I was a little older, she converted our garage into a studio and dabbled in stained glass and photography. When I was a teenager, she started her own party planning business and designed custom invitations using the finest papers, ribbons, fabrics, die cuts, and foils. She designed her own line embossed papers long before the scrapbooking world made embossing trendy.
My mother always told me that when I win my first Academy Award I should remember to say that I owe it all to her. The fact is, I do owe it all to her. She not only inspired my creativity and my entrepreneurial spirit, but more importantly, she taught me how to be the mother that I am today. So, Happy Mother’s Day to a great mom! I love you.
“We form inside our mother’s womb, far from her arms but right beneath her heart.” Patti Davis, The Lives Our Mother’s Leave Us

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