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Moving – The Joy & Chaos of Change

Photo of many boxes

As an artist, part of how I’ve assessed my own health is in reviewing my creative output. Generally I am very productive. I have few neurotic needs, such as the need to create only on odd numbered days (I have met artists with similar needs) or the need to listen to certain music to be creative. I’ve learned to be creative when I have the time, which I’ve always thought of as a gift. I’ve never experienced a “block” and feel empathy for those that do since it must feel awful. Instead, any breaks I’ve had in my creative output have been due to moving, which is a months long process of packing, moving and unpacking.

For this move from my in home studio in Hartsdale to a rented studio space in Beacon, I hired Murphy Movers and three very able men took about 6 hours to get the job done. I am exceedingly grateful for their assistance. They followed the directions on the boxes and kept the tops of the boxes up. During our move from San Diego to NY, the movers tossed the boxes in every direction and I spent weeks reassembling a number of broken sculptures after the move.

It occurred to me how fortunate I am to have been able to hire help for the move. Given I’ve worked as a nurse for 40 years, I cannot exactly say I’m fortunate. I’ve worked hard to have the time to make enough art that it would take three men 6 hours to move it and my furnishings. I’ve made the time and am proud of my productivity. But so many artists I know would have a tough time moving so efficiently.

I’m extremely grateful for the assistance to my daughter and her fiance for helping me to reassemble my painting rack! From here on, I am going to reconsider size as a measure of how serious an artist I am. As a petite female, I am well aware of the innate prejudice that exists about anything that’s small. I’m going to think seriously about whether to work large in the future. The other thing that occurred to me is how many of my pieces are very large. Every art professor and art mentor I’ve ever had has encouraged me to work large. They have often said anyone that’s serious about their art will work large. Have they ever moved their studios? Did Vermeer work large? Or Klee? The contemporary art scene has emphasized size over content for decades. Consider the whole top floor of the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art. It’s enormous and vacuous at the same time. There is literally no content to the paintings. It seems in the effort to be politically correct many artists have chosen to be as inoffensive as possible by not actually making art about anything other than their own emotional state. That’s not my style. My work is more about the world I live in than about me personally.

So, please give me a few weeks to be up and creating again without the distraction of this move. I am very excited about the space and look forward to becoming a part of the Beacon art community.