February 27, 2009
These last few weeks have been crazy-busy, exciting and exhausting. Some highlights:
I taught my first workshop out of the Windsor Printmaker’s Forum, a two-day whirlwind introduction to stone lithography. It was fast-paced and fun, and we got an incredible amount of work done in less than twelve hours. We’d scheduled it for Monday and Tuesday of the university’s Reading Week to accommodate some professors who came down from North Bay to attend the class, but there was enough interest in the community that we’re planning to schedule a weekend workshop very soon (stay tuned!).
After the workshop I spent the next day and a half building slideshows in preparation for our Pecha Kucha Night, which, if you didn’t get the message last time, was the event of the season. A week later I’m still a little hung over from the excitement generated that night.
The day after Pecha Kucha Peter and I took the day off to drive around the county, paying a visit to the Ridley homestead where they have recently welcomed an incredibly soft and lovely baby llama into their growing fibre family. First-year shares in this homegrown fibre co-op have sold out, but if you keep your eye on Old School Fibre’s etsy shop you might be able to snag one next season.
This week I spent two mornings at the University of Windsor teaching a lithography demo to the senior printmaking class. We did our best to speed through about four weeks of instruction in six hours, falling a little short but not disastrously so. I got to spend some time in my old haunts, working on a press I love, and one of the students is even interested in coming out to the Printmaker’s Forum and running for a spot on the board, which is beyond awesome.
In local news, Windsor’s very own Phog Lounge was named this week as best live music venue in Canada by CBC Radio3. The National Post even called Windsor “the nation’s undiscovered indie rock supercity”. But hell, we knew that. If you were unfortunate enough to miss the big announcement you’re in luck, because CBC television cameras captured the moment of the big reveal live. Click to relive the glory!
This weekend we’ve got some sooper-seekrit family stuff going on out of town, but if you’re staying behind in Windsor you should check out these two events tonight that I’m disappointed to be missing:
And don’t forget, if you feel yourself starting to wobble, use the zen to keep you steady.
Posted by jodi on February 27, 2009 at 10.40am
February 21, 2009
Windsor’s first ever Pecha Kucha night was a resounding success, with about twice as many attendees as Artcite has available chairs for. The energy in the room was palpable, some fantastic discussions were started, and the last day and a half has seen a metric tonne of enthusiastic feedback landing in my inbox.
If you spend too much time reading the online comments in the Windsor Star, you might get the impression that this town is going to hell in a handbasket. The Big 3 automakers are on bankruptcy’s door and workers are being laid off every day. Much of our downtown is dominated by dance bars that cater to underage Detroit kids (underage there, but not here). Unscrupulous business owners hastily tear down heritage buildings on Sunday mornings without fear of recrimination. It has become near impossible to sell a house here for more than you paid to buy it. We’re facing a shortage of family doctors more acute than any other place in the country. Many of our roads need repaving. Even the bingo halls and strip clubs, whose ability to turn a profit was once as secure as that of Chrysler, Ford and GM, are falling on hard times. And our university, for all its strengths, can’t scrape its sorry ass off the bottom of the Maclean’s rankings no matter how many millions it spends on slick new rebranding packages.
But there is something happening in this town that hasn’t quite made it onto everyone’s radar just yet. Windsor has been hurting economically for a while now, long enough perhaps to have gotten used to a new way of living that other places in the province are only now starting to feel. And maybe that’s part of why there is a movement of change from the ground up happening all over town. It may have all started with the Green Corridor Project, an initiative begun by visual arts instructor Rod Strickland and artist Noel Harding which brings together students from disparate areas such as visual arts, architecture and engineering, partnering with the city and members of the community to redevelop the area surrounding the bridge that links Windsor with Detroit. There seems to be a groundswell of energy for community-building projects in Windsor right now, and for our first Pecha Kucha night I sought out a few of the people at the centre of it to speak about possibilities for engaging with this community we live in and love.
I’d like to say an enormous thank you to our seven presenters, to Artcite for generously allowing us the use of their space and their equipment for the evening, and to the very many people who attended and took part in the spirited discussion that followed. And to everyone who spoke to me afterward expressing an interest in presenting at a future installment: you will definitely be hearing from me.
Some photos from the night:
Mita Williams (Leddy Library, University of Windsor): The City as Playground
Rod Strickland (School of Visual Arts, University of Windsor): Open Corridor
Tom Lucier (Phog Lounge): No More Bemoaning: Growing Windsor’s Creative Class
Pina and Adriano Ciotoli (WindsorEats.com): Eat Your City
Andrew Foot (InternationalMetropolis.com): Architectural Desecration
Justin Langlois (School of Visual Arts, University of Windsor): How to Fix the City: Social Practice in Windsor
Only a small slice of the large crowd; there were several more rows of people standing behind those you see at the bottom of the second image, plus a whole other side of the room beyond that wall to the left. Seriously. Packed.
If you missed the event, you’re in luck! Tom Lucier also thoughtfully recorded video of all six presentations and posted them on his personal weblog.
Posted by jodi on February 21, 2009 at 6.32pm
February 18, 2009
Posted by jodi on February 18, 2009 at 8.26am
February 4, 2009
Minus ten (-18° wind chill), clear and sunny. I should have taken my bike.
On days like this I love winter.
Posted by jodi on February 4, 2009 at 3.10pm
February 3, 2009
Hand stitching a hem on part of my new work uniform!
Now that I have a new laptop with a built-in webcam I’m going to try to do a studio view video every week. I know, always with the big promises. I figure if I just keep making them eventually I’ll maybe keep one.
Here’s something else I’m working on: a strip piecing appliqué project using some of the leftover fabrics I saved from the Wardrobe Project. Some of this will be for my uniforms and some of it for drawings.
Posted by jodi on February 3, 2009 at 1.52pm
February 2, 2009
I heard of a man
who says words so beautifully
that if he only speaks their name
women give themselves to him.
If I am dumb beside your body
while silence blossoms like tumors on our lips
it is because I hear a man climb stairs
and clear his throat outside our door.
From Let Us Compare Mythologies. Contact Press, 1956.
For information on the bloggers silent poetry reading, visit this site.
Posted by jodi on February 2, 2009 at 12.11pm