Thursday, May 24, 2007

real life again

Landed back home in Oakland yesterday to a mountain of work I can't make sense of and completely unable to function without the daily nap I've been taking every afternoon for the past 10 days. It's amazing how quickly an extra hour of sleep in the afternoon becomes essential while on vacation. Thankfully my assistant Sara did a more than competent job of holding the fort down and making sure everything didn't collapse while I was gone. She did a much better job than most people could be expected to do-- stepping into my shoes while I go to Maine for naps-- yet she felt she should have done more and done it better. I love overachievers.

Since Charlie and Terrill moved to Maine back in January, Andrew and I have really missed having them in our daily lives. I think we crammed 4 months of worth of our usual activities into the 10 days we spent with them, which included exactly 5 different things:
  1. Cooking and eating outrageously fattening gourmet meals, including organic beef from Kelly's down the road and dozens of eggs from another farmer in the opposite direction. I also ate fiddlehead ferns for the first time ever.
  2. Consuming vast quantities of wine every evening.
  3. Playing in Terrill and Charlie's new glassblowing studio. Another first: blowing glass. After watching Charlie and Terrill effortlessly blow amazing glass for such a long time I figured I was ready to give it a shot. I could not believe how difficult it was to just do the blowing part, much less twirl the pipe to keep the glass on center while I was doing it. The picture above is Charlie helping me with my first piece, which can only be described as a collapsed silicone boob. Note the look of intense concentration on my face, and the look of infinite patience on Charlie's.
  4. Long conversations about every angle involved in blowing glass, throwing clay, and selling work.
  5. Cruising the Maine countryside in search of beer, food, and cute roadside farm animals.
After 7 days in rural Maine we all went to New York City for a few days of visiting friends (me) and checking out the International Contemporary Furniture Fair (them). Another day we went to the Cooper-Hewitt Design Museum and also visited the famous design and home accessories store Moss. I am really interested in how "design" is a word being used to uplift "craft". Moss is a fascinating example of this; most items for sale are encased in glass display cases, not unlike what you would see at a museum. I've noticed how the word "designer" is more commonly being used to replace the word "artist". I was recently featured in a write-up on Apartment Therapy and I was described as a designer. I would describe myself primarily as an artist, a designer has a different connotation to me and I haven't worked out my feelings on this subject yet, so we'll leave that discussion for another day.

I'm only home for a few days then I'm off again to help Christa move to Kansas City for her new plum job at the Art Institute. I have a thousand things that need to get done between now and then, so I'm off!