Tuesday, December 17, 2019

2019 11 The Sun Beats Hot The Shade Is Pleasant

The Sun Beats Hot The Shade Is Pleasant

Altar Egos

Andrea Matus deMeng

Shake Rag Alley, Mineral Point, WI

On Tuesday, May 14th I picked up Andrea Matus deMeng at the Milwaukee airport to begin our spring workshop experience at Shake Rag Alley in Mineral Point, WI.

Andrea Matus deMeng

The Altar Egos class began on Thursday, May 16th. Here is Andrea's class sample.

Course Description:  "I’ve collected many masks over the years. I’ve always found them fascinating: the potential to imbue an inanimate object with a personality all of its own. The dual nature of the veil that reveals that which was concealed is so wonderfully complex and yet so common. Those stories we all heard when we were kids – whether in fairy tales, comic books, or mythologies, the mask is a common symbol used to suggest transformation, giving the wearer a newfound power and truth. The mask permits us to explore parts of ourselves that might not be readily accepted in everyday society; it allows us to explore undiscovered parts of ourselves and in that way makes the mask a very compelling device. A simple bit of costuming over your face and inwardly you feel a transformation … not just visually, but psychologically. With this in mind, it seemed appropriate to enshrine these alter egos in altars as a method for displaying those hidden parts of ourselves that lie just beneath the surface, waiting for a chance to be realized and explored.

During our four days together we’ll explore the different possibilities for preparing the wood for collage as we incorporate many techniques, mediums, textures, and materials into our process. Using paint, clay, collage, and found objects, we’ll begin transforming the plain mask into something opulent and mysterious. We’ll also include some workable mechanics to our collage-assemblage: Yours may include hinges, pulleys, disguised windows, or messages … things that perform a function. Marrying functionality with our visual narrative, as each new layer is introduced we will discuss how to use our materials to overcome challenges in composition, unify our elements, contend with our inner critic, and finally reveal your own alter ego."

The Lind Pavilion at Shake Rag Alley is a great place to take an art workshop.

At this workshop I worked on three pieces--but we are going to focus on the one that ended up being called The Sun Beats Hot The Shade Is Pleasant.

The auditioning of the parts and pieces

The backgrounds get painted

During this class my friends and classmates made some great art. Here are there efforts:

Here is as far as I got on The Sun Beats Hot The Shade is Pleasant.

The base collage

The mask elements

Part of what Andrea asked us to do was bury a theme within the art with text. Pictured later are the two cherubs who made it onto the lower level of the piece, adorned with part of the phrase that titles the piece. 

0n Monday the 20th it was my job to get Andrea back to the Milwaukee airport in order for her to fly home to Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. Thanks to Andrea for the opportunity to make this piece of art.

In order to finish this piece, I took it out to the fall version of Make What Ya Brung at Shake Rag. Make What Ya Brung is a gathering of art buddies for four days--four days in which you can work on any piece of art you can.

I added a stone to the mask

The cherubs--with the title phrases

The text went away and was replace with a trivet

The sunny side

The shady side

And, thus we have, The Sun Beats Hot The Shade is Pleasant. 

Thanks to Andrea Matus deMeng and Shake Rag Alley for providing the inspiration to make this piece.

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