Softie Monsters and Motherhood
I think I just finished making my first homemade toy. I say, "think" because it's likely I'm forgetting a project that I might have created many moons ago. But this feels like the first toy so I'm going to say that it is the first toy. So it's the first! I've wanted to make a softie/ monster for a long time but I just decided to cut up that torn cashmere sweater and start monster-making. Yes.
I keep thinking about how motherhood has changed my art practice. In the obvious sense that I find myself making mobiles, soft sculpture, and creating softie monsters but also that I'm working smaller because I only have small amounts of time. And that I see whimsy and humor and playfulness entering my work in a new way. I see color and texture and scale shifting. And now I have to organize my studio time with greater efficiency than I ever imagined. I wonder how these changes would be reflected in tackling something much larger like another installation or public art collaboration. Hmm.
Somehow, this reminds me of Michael McConnell's sculptures that I recently saw in Marion & Rose's Workshop. He's altering stuffed animals onto taxidermy forms often turning the toys inside out and resewing them. They're beautiful. And playful. And endearing. And surprising. And magical, really. I think motherhood has changed me in the same ways--it's turned me inside out and sculpted me to a new form but somehow highlighted the playful, beautiful, and endearing around me. And it's exhausting, yes, but so much more magical than I imagined. And I want these things to be reflected in my new work.
And so... a yellow sweater, brown corduroys, a pink heart on the back pocket, a square turquoise face, and round fuchsia shoes to mark the changes. And mostly tenderness, my friends. And small things. And soft things. And bright colors too.