It All Adds Up

Paradox, detail ©2015, 26" x 32," Monoprint One week left to the Davis Art Studio Tour! This past weekend I cleared out so much unwanted "stuff" that I'm certain I'll feel psychically lighter for the next 6 months.

I love the spacious white feeling of my studio. Now, like materials are stored with like (easy on the memory). Unlabeled boxes have large black letters stating their contents. Artwork sits stacked, ready to be hung, displayed and sold.

For all this, I owe kudos to my sister, Amelia, who helped me to carry heavy objects down the studio stairs, cast away unused collage fodder and grab pictures of my leaf collection. Her openhearted support helped me to keep a stiff upper lip as I carted numerous armloads to the recycling bins.


The act of clearing a space is of course both a physical and mental task and requires me to take a stand; I'll let go of this and hold onto that. And, when it's all done, I can focus on "closing the circle," returning to where it all began; the artwork itself.

I'm happy and excited to share the prints that have come off the Gelli plate in the last year. There are many of them and some wonderful cards that they've inspired. I'll have two of my good friends serving as wing persons so that I can show you just how how the magic happens.

If you're in the Davis area, I'd love to see you this Saturday or Sunday!


A Clean Break

IMG_2097 Several weeks ago when I was coming down my studio stairs, I tripped on the second to last step and went flying, my hands holding a mug and several brayers and my feet imbedded in unwieldy Dansko clogs. I was barely able to twist myself around so I'd land on my foot rather than my shoulder.

I discovered the next day that it was a clean break of the 5th metatarsal. Bumping around the house in my new Bledsoe boot, I earned the name "Mama Pegleg Pirate."

Two days later, I came down with a virus that has taken my voice hostage for two weeks. Since that time, I've spent rather more time looking out our upstairs window at my studio, rather than in it.

I've often thought that nothing occurs in a vacuum, and that for most things there is a good reason; this accident being no exception. And there's something definite about a break. It insists that you pause, that you look at the world in an unaccustomed way.

Upstairs dreaming

I began to dream. Ideas that previously floated beyond me felt within reach. I created a retention plan to capture "waiting for warm" water from showers, bath and the kitchen faucet. With the help of my husband and daughter, we installed a family of buckets in strategic locations. Despite no winter rainfall for the past month, we've been able to water the plants with what we've collected.

I also decided to take a more proactive stance toward the studio. I wrote out a plan for the Davis Art Studio Tour, printed  some calendar pages and scheduled tasks  and events, so that I could see them clearly in front of me (rather than having them creep up from behind). I made a list of posts for social media, searched for frames for my monoprints and in an inspired moment, asked for help.

We often think we have to do everything ourselves, but in the last several days, I've asked both my husband and sister to be shopping ambassadors. Monty headed off to Dick Blick's in Sacramento and when they came up short there, Amelia, my sister drove me into Berkeley so that I could visit the well stocked DB's on University Ave.

While I'm still frustrated that I can't stand up for very long and that I haven't been able to get in a good block of time in the studio, things are moving along for the Davis Art Studio Tour coming up April 11th and 12. Most of all, I'm grateful for the love of family and friends and my long suffering husband who amiably smiles when I say once again, "I'm so tired of being sick and tired," and simply says: "I know, Sweetie."

2015 in Motion!

From the Davis Open Studio Tour 2015 website I feel like someone with a diary--who hasn't made an entry in a looong time. Which usually means lots has been going on. In December I wrote about my fear of preparing for my open studio. Like many things one fears, it turned out to be far easier, much less stressful and a whole lot more fun than I imagined.

So much fun in fact that when my friend, Sara Post, told me about the Davis Art Studio Tour coming in April, I signed right up. I felt like a kid who'd just gone down a slide, saying "Wheee! I want to do that again!"

So here I go, the Studio Tour is a cooperative of 30 artists, and like a well oiled machine, each person has their part to play. I look forward to this collaboration; working with Linda Clark Johnson on the December Open Studio was a huge learning curve and definitely a friendship deepener.

Linda and I caught framing up a print.

Kim Tackett and Linda Clark Johnson at our Open Studio in December









In order to prepare, I've been making loose plans; plans that will become more detailed in the days ahead.

In the meantime, my family and I just returned from time spent in one of my favorite places; Kauai. I've established the habit of bringing art supplies along with me and I spent all the time, when I wasn't hiking swimming or walking the beaches, immersed in plant materials and nice gooey acrylics. I want to make sure that some of the Studio Tour artwork includes and reflects the richness of this beloved island.

I'll be sharing more about the Davis Art Studio Tour as the next couple months unfold. Now, up to the studio!