My art studio has been very versatile lately.
As a native New Yorker, I have many loved ones who have been strongly impacted by the Coronavirus. Two of my close relatives contracted COVID-19, and many more were directly exposed to it. While emailing with one of my nieces, she told me that her 11 year old daughter is obsessed with art. I arranged for her to have a FaceTime studio visit. We spent over an hour discussing each other’s art. She loved seeing a working artist’s studio, even the overstuffed storage closet and the supply shelves and cabinets. Her mother informed me that is the most her daughter has spoken since the quarantine began.
Via FaceTime I am also using the computer to make a hard cover book with my 9 year old granddaughter. It’s called MIMI AND ME: The Four Seasons. We are each contributing drawings, paintings, stories and photographs relating to the seasons of the year. It is challenging for her as she lives in Florida and all of the seasons are so similar.
Amid my paintings and projects, I am also using my studio for some non-art related endeavors. It has been converted into a zoom yoga studio (I just push the easels aside and roll out my mat.); a hair salon (My hair stylist prompted me via zoom how to do a different kind of coloring.); and a place of worship (My husband and I attend online services. Our dog joins us, but he snores for the duration). On Easter we had a zoom visit with our immediate family from Maryland, Colorado and Florida. Everyone wore some version of an Easter bonnet. My husband was reluctant to wear the Baltimore Ravens cap with a papier-mache bunny on top which I created for him. His was voted best bonnet!
As my art style is abstract and semi-abstract, it is a perfect vehicle for me to express my thoughts and emotions at this time – getting back to basics, a shift in priorities, faith, silence and isolation.
One beautiful, warm, sunny, breezy day I decided to paint outside. The wind took my large canvas as a sail. A bug got caught in the wet paint. I noticed I had dripped some paint on my brick patio and I immediately sprayed it down with the hose before the paint dried. I then noticed that my painting had also been sprayed. That is when I decided to retreat back to my beloved studio, my happy place even in the best of times. I am especially grateful for it during this troubled time.