Tuesday, August 30, 2011

August 30, 2011

I am finally feeling better and starting to work on some stuff for my show at the end of September.... this is what my couch work space looks like. 

August 30, 2011

Now I am adding sequins again... and lots of red stitches.

Monday, August 29, 2011

La Llorona, The Crying Woman

I grew up with this children's tale by Joe Hayes.  It is kind of a frightening children's tale, but I love it. 
Lately I have been thinking alot about La Llorona.  The title intrigues me more than the story, the crying woman...  I have been stitching like crazy on this months dress... I have been wearing it through Earthquake 8/21/2011, Though Tropical Storm and Flooding 8/28/2011, through double rainbows and all kinds of amazing weather phenomena this month. 
Yesterday, Vermont succumbed to a deluge of flooding and wind.  Today Vermont is picking up the pieces of a devastated infrastructure and agricultural destruction.  My heart goes out to Vermonters today.  So I will stitch some love into this dress. 
I am also under the weather... sick in bed, reeling from a terrible cold and fever.  I am feeling sentimental and vulnerable, thinking of a world changing.  Thinking about climate change, about local change and about personal change.  Where will I go after this project?  Where will these dresses go?  I got a copy of my review in Art New England today in the mail and the image of my dress, "Chameleon", struck me something peculiar. The picture next to the review made the dress look like an artifact of sorts.  Like a historic costuming, or armor... I love it.  I love it so much that I had a great aha moment where I realized that as much as I wish I was a fashion designer... I am an artist... creating a relic of my own history.  I am so humbled and honored that people have been willing to come with me on this journey this past year.  You dear, reader have been a part of this creation of a recorded history in my life... and for that I thank you.  We only have a couple of months left to go, and as I am getting tired and ready for something new, I am so pleased and rather impressed that you and I both have continued to make this project what it is...
So tonight I leave you with the story of La Llorona... and please keep in mind... I am naming this dress after the weeping woman not so much because of the story, I just really like the way La Llornoa rolls off the tongue.


The Weeping Woman
(La Llorona)

by Joe Hayes

This is a story that the old ones have been telling to children for hundreds of years. It is a sad tale, but it lives strong in the memories of the people, and there are many who swear that it is true.

Long years ago in a humble little village there lived a fine looking girl named Maria Some say she was the most beautiful girl in the world! And because she was so beautiful, Maria thought she was better than everyone else.

As Maria grew older, her beauty increased And her pride in her beauty grew too When she was a young woman, she would not even look at the young men from her village. They weren't good enough for her! "When I marry," Maria would say, "I will marry the most handsome man in the world."

And then one day, into Maria's village rode a man who seemed to be just the one she had been talking about. He was a dashing young ranchero, the son of a wealthy rancher from the southern plains. He could ride like a Comanche! In fact, if he owned a horse, and it grew tame, he would give it away and go rope a wild horse from the plains. He thought it wasn't manly to ride a horse if it wasn't half wild.

He was handsome! And he could play the guitar and sing beautifully. Maria made up her mind-that was, the man for her! She knew just the tricks to win his attention.

If the ranchero spoke when they met on the pathway, she would turn her head away. When he came to her house in the evening to play his guitar and serenade her, she wouldn't even come to the window. She refused all his costly gifts. The young man fell for her tricks. "That haughty girl, Maria, Maria! " he said to himself. "I know I can win her heart. I swear I'll marry that girl."

And so everything turned out as Maria planned. Before long, she and the ranchero became engaged and soon they were married. At first, things were fine. They had two children and they seemed to be a happy family together. But after a few years, the ranchero went back to the wild life of the prairies. He would leave town and be gone for months at a time. And when he returned home, it was only to visit his children. He seemed to care nothing for the beautiful Maria. He even talked of setting Maria aside and marrying a woman of his own wealthy class.

As proud as Maria was, of course she became very angry with the ranchero. She also began to feel anger toward her children, because he paid attention to them, but just ignored her.

One evening, as Maria was strolling with her two children on the shady pathway near the river, the ranchero came by in a carriage. An elegant lady sat on the seat beside him. He stopped and spoke to his children, but he didn't even look at Maria. He whipped the horses on up the street.

When she saw that, a terrible rage filled Maria, and it all turned against her children. And although it is sad to tell, the story says that in her anger Maria seized her two children and threw them into the river! But as they disappeared down the stream, she realized what she had done! She ran down the bank of the river, reaching out her arms to them. But they were long gone.

The next morning, a traveler brought word to the villagers that a beautiful woman lay dead on the bank of the river. That is where they found Maria, and they laid her to rest where she had fallen.

But the first night Maria was in the grave, the villagers heard the sound of crying down by the river. It was not the wind, it was La Llorona crying. "Where are my children?" And they saw a woman walking up and down the bank of the river, dressed in a long white robe, the way they had dressed Maria for burial. On many a dark night they saw her walk the river bank and cry for her children. And so they no longer spoke of her as Maria. They called her La Llorona, the weeping woman. And by that name she is known to this day. Children are warned not to go out in the dark, for, La Llorona might snatch them and never return them.

The Timbelina Blow Off Tent


The Blow Off Tent.

One of the most fascinating aspects of the Thimbelina Blow Off Tent was that visitors didn't know if they should go inside of it or not.  Some folks would peek in and others would march right on in and then march right on out.  Some lingered, some actually went inside of door # 3 to sit down with the computer and the Thimbelina Reverse Burlesque Dance.  Others would come inside, take a look around, walk out, then go back in again.  I thought this was such a great experiment in human nature and how humans react when faced with mystery and allure. 

Thimbelina Peep-Holes

Well the Church of Circus is wrapping up and I sat in the gallery last Saturday.  I took some great images of looking through the peep-holes.... and there was also a great review of the show in our home town paper, the SEVEN DAYS:  http://www.7dvt.com/2011popcorn-peepholes-women-made-steel-step-right-church-circus
We were also featured in Stuck in Vermont : http://www.7dvt.com/2011bcas-30-hours-art


I will be selling these fabulous Fascinators during Art Hop at the Davis Studio Gallery inside of the SEABA Center at 404 Pine Street during the month of September...
I am really excited about them because I hand felted each flower blossom, yea to felting a new passion of mine!

Getting Ready for Art Hop

The picture of the ruffles comes from my newest masterpiece called the Invisibility Ball Gown.  I am so excited to wear it for Art Hop this coming Sept. 9th and 10th. 
The picture of the studio is what things tend to look like in my studio right before several big shows come together. 

Wylie Sofia Garcia

A patch for the birds

We have this bush right outside of our font window with all of these marvelous little birds singing and hanging out.  I love them so much that I found some fabric with these little happy birds on it to always remember how cheerful late summer is. 
Link to a video of my Birds: 

August 29, 2011


Monday, August 22, 2011

Past Midnight... uploading images

Here I am uploading more images... so tired, but must be done...

August 21, 2011

I found my camera cord! 
I have a review published in Art New England!  Find the PDF version through the Helen Day Art Center Website by clicking here:  http://helenday.com/eastgalleryupcoming
I have just returned from vacation in Booth bay Harbor, Maine.
I am making hats for an upcoming Art Festival that takes place September 9th and 10th here in Burlington. 
I am online finally blogging again about this dress... THIS dress!  I love this dress!  It is so easy to wear.  It started off as a black and white floral print dress from some period of my past when I liked to wear 1950's looking dresses.  This dress is not vintage, but rather something vintage inspired.  I am finding that working against the very busy floral pattern has not been as easy as I had hoped.  I have started to applique a green polka dotted fabric that I picked up several years ago.  At first I was gaining inspiration from  the Farm Barn at Shelburne Farms, but now I have really deviated from that motif.  Instead, I am feeling like I have been stitching a set of green polka dotted ribs on this dress.  I feel my ribs alot when I breathe in this dress... it does feel a little tight around the center, but I feel like it offers a good reminder to breathe and take one moment at a time.  So as I am stitching these "ribs" I have been thinking alot about the phrase "just breathe".  The words have not made their way into the dress yet, and I am still uncertain that they will, but I am feeling a deep connection with my breath these days.  Perhaps this is good seeing that I have also been experiencing  a little more anxiety than usual.. could it be the reintroduction of caffeine?  maybe.  Could it be a result of not knowing what to do with myself on vacation, maybe.  Could it be from having taken on too many projects this summer... well sure... which is why I am sad but also relieved to say that I will not be participating in the STRUT fashion show for this year's Art Hop. I just want to have fun. Enjoy myself, and enjoy the hop.  I feel like I work so hard as it is, that to pull together more adrenaline when I am working on near zero is not going to fare well for me or my sanity.  So it is a bummer, but there will always be next year... I hope.  
This being said from the woman who is just on the heels of a wonderful time spent amongst friends and loved ones in Booth bay Harbor, Maine.  
How do I describe this magical place and these magical people?  I think the magic comes more from the people than the place, but let's just say I left my mark around town, wanting to share the love I feel.  I am thinking of a signature of mine being a heart with rays ... it feels like me, it feels like me saying share the love, and feel the love I am sending out into this world.  Some folks may have seen my little insignia... yep, you know who you are... it's me telling you I love you. 
Being in Maine got me thinking alot about love, and family and intimacy amongst friends and a tight knit group of people.  You see, I have been going to Maine to visit the same group of friends almost every summer since I was 19 years old.  That's been 12 years... (yes yes, I am 31)... wow, 12 years of sharing ups and downs and love and laughs and frustration and joy.  The house has never changed.  When we all walk into this house it is as if we have never aged, forever immortalized as mischievous youth who laugh without cause and share warmth and kindness.  Only the images and group collaborative drawings and -tshirt designs are proof that time has continued, sure we may look a little older, pudgier in places, winkles on brows, beards on some...well beards and moustaches on all (a Barn Tradition of mine to provide everyone with fake mustaches, at least they started off fake in the beginning until those of us could actually grow them), but we are all young here, we live life with abandon for good and some times for awkward, but never bad.. at least never too bad.  And of course there are the video games... but not just playing them, dancing to them, like Mega Man and Double Dragon II Soundtracks to some of the most liberating and frenetic dance moves I have ever witnessed as well as made myself.   This is a place of goodness.  Seeing as how we all make our way back every year, one could almost call this a place of worship... a place of devotion, we like to call it the Waiting House... a place where one is constantly waiting on the group to make a decision only to act while waiting for every one to come to agreement... you could spend the whole week waiting in the barn for some one to be ready to do something... but all one has to do is make a move and everyone (usually) will follow... trust... Trust is a big player in this house.  
So I could go on about this place for a long time suffice to say it is an important place to me and played a huge role in my formative years of learning how to be me...I would say that this is the place where I learned how to love, how to wait, how to be patient, how to act and how to laugh... did I mention that this is the place where I also learned to sing?  I love singing... and often part with a new song in my mind... something to remember fleeting moments of summer by.  
So I tribute this place... and some special people in deed with a stitch of a heart with rays emanating from my heart.   Cheesy enough?  yep... but that's just how I am going to roll with this dress... 
Do I have a name yet?  No, but I am thinking about something related to the body... about exposing a softness from within... something vulnerable...and sweet...something that is true to the feeling of humility I feel about this project right now, perhaps something that can speak to the earnesty of where I am being so close to the end of this year...   

Thursday, August 11, 2011

August 10th, 2011

I have misplaced my camera cord.  I have some fabulous pictures, but no way to download... yet.
My apartment is undergoing a major change.  A MAJOR Major MAJOR change...  We are packing up alot of artwork.  Moving pieces that we have lived with for many many years into storage.  I have been packing and bubbling and boxing works of art that have been around me, that have been my visual fodder for so long that I believe I am taking them for granted.   So it is time to move them out of my visual language and see what parts of them will remain in my memory... my subconscious.  This feels Great!  Instead of a wall packed with art I will have a wall devoted to one piece.  I am particularly excited about my Charles Barbier corner.  Who is Charles? Only the most wonderful, amazing, talented and gracious artist human being.  I love his art.  Charles lives near Baton Rouge, LA.  too far away from us.  We miss him so much and love his art so much that we wouldn't dare put his paintings into storage... it would be like losing a family member... that's how attached I am to his pieces that we have. 
I am also in the process of painting the walls.  Creamy off white and of course the bright green.  The red and chalk paint wall is going bye-bye.  I was starting to feel like I had permanent 3-D goggle vision in my living room.  No more split tone walls.  But the green stays.  In most of the places I have lived, I have had a bright green, almost neon green wall.  Where does that come from?  I  don't know, but it feels right. 

Wylie Sofia Garcia

Sunday, August 7, 2011

August, 2011 The Dress I Forgot to Name

So this month ended with a huge performance and installation for the Church of Circus.  It ended with exhaustion.  It ended on fire with embers still smoldering and getting ready for regeneration.  It ended with satisfaction and joy.  It has been an amazing month. 
I have been teaching, traveling, sewing, installing, making music, making art, making friends, picking blueberries, going swimming, cooking amazing food and simply loving summer in Vermont. 
I tried to find a poem that could capture the way I felt about this month, but as I was sitting with google looking for the right way to express how I feel, I realized that I should just write it for myself.  I feel good.  I feel balanced, even through mayhem of trying to get images to magazine editors, images to art center directors and all the other things that have pulled me in various directions.   I feel like this project has been lagging, but I realize how close I am to the end.  I am in the home stretch.  I am almost there. November is only 3 months away for me.... only three more dresses.  
I feel like my artistic and fashion style has developed into a stronger presence.  I still at times wish I could fade into the background, but overall I have been learning how to be me... how to be comfortable with just being me.... doesn't matter what crazy dress I have on... I am still the navigator and captain of this vessel.. this life...this project... feels good not to have lost sight of that...not to say that there haven't been times where I feel like I was loosing sight of my goals around this project. 
As busy as August has been, I must say that my trip to Maine was so wonderful and rejuvenating.  I felt like I was in a perpetual time warp with all of my friends around.  It also made me realize how high strung I have been and how hard I have been working on my life, career, everything.  My friends gave me permission to relax and it took several days before I finally did, but it wasn't easy.  I am used to working all day and mothering most of the time, and then working all night.  In Boothbay, there was so much action that I had little time to think about art and magazines, and this months dress.  It felt good, It felt like stepping out of this dress and the hype around this project and for just a brief moment recognizing the person who I am.  I was like "hey me, how's it going?  You gonna do some yoga today or go to the ocean?"  My brain slowed down just enough to allow my body to catch up.  It felt good.  It was good.  It is good.  It allowed me time to wrap my brain around the Church of Circus Project which took a week of installation. 
The Church of Circus opening reception was phenomenal, a good turn out, and oh so much fun. It was marvelous and spectacular, and I have to thank all of my fellow collaborators for their hard work and support and for being friends.  
The day after the Circus was difficult, exhausting, and terrifying.  The morning was lovely and lazy and had that perfect art show "now what?" let down, only to be interrupted by a family emergency with my best friend's youngest son.  The details are private, but in the end every one was ok, healthy and safe but as a result we had one extra toddler in our mix for the afternoon.  OMG!  Mothers with twins or triplets, bless you all.  Saturday was a long long long day.  Time for a final picture... nope, time to document the details of the dress? nope.  I was asleep before my head hit the pillow. 
Woke up this morning, realizing my dress did not have a name?  Does this mean she is No Name? 
As I write this I am reflecting on what I would call her.  Asa loved this dress... he always told me "Mama, yo  u have such a pretty dress"  It was pretty.  I always felt pretty in this dress.  Was it her collar?  Her hat? Do I know why?  I suppose I could write and write and write about it, but then I think I would be searching for some kind of poetic justification for a name for this dress.  This dress is simply, the dress I forgot to name.  It happens. 

August, 2011 Church of Circus Reception


August, 2011, Maine

I went on a trip to Maine for a week.  Spent my time in Boothbay Harbor.  This is a picture at my friends garden plot at the school he works at in Wiscasset.  I am posing here with my other fair haired friend Mischa, it was an incredibly hot summer day and both of us were wilting.

August, 2011

These are images of things I have been working on this month.  Am I trying to justify not working as hard on this dress as I could have?  Maybe, but why? I have been busy as a buzzy bee...

August, 2011 Making a tent

I hand dyed all of the fabric and then cut it to scale... this is all for the tent I that I made for the Church of Circus Exhibit that is currently on display here in Burlington

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Art Updates

Dear Friends and Family,


I am excited to announce several new and exciting events and exhibitions featuring my Art. 


It begins with the opening of The Church of Circus, a collective circus themed group show opening this Friday, August 5, 2011 at the old OutDoorGearExchange  152 Cherry St. Burlington, Vermont at 5pm.


The Church of Circus is a 'pop-up' group art exhibit installed temporarily in a huge retail space in down town Burlington.  In a dizzying installation of sculpture, painting, photography and performance, these 10 Vermont Based Artists put their own spin on the Brechtian tradition of collaboration and audience participation as a vehicle to aesthetic experience.  The Church of Circus preaches 'Art For All', creating an interactive lively and provocative atmosphere for all who enter. 


 For more information please visit our blog site at http://churchofcircus.tumblr.com 

This show is going to be spectacular and I will have an installation inspired by vintage circus and burlesque titled "Thimbelina: Blow Off".  If you are around Burlington for the month of August, this is an exhibit not to be missed. 


Also not to be missed is a review by Amy Rahn for Art New England Magazine about my solo show The Tulle Did Her In at the Helen Day Art Center in Stowe, Vermont for their September-October, 2011 issue.  The show is opening on September 23, 2011 and will feature my dresses from The Dress That Makes The Woman Project.  We are also transforming a portion of the gallery in to my studio where I will be coming to work during the exhibit. For more information please visit http://helenday.com   


In addition to the Art New England Review, I shall be featured in IMAGE Magazine for places to go and things to see related to Fashion and Art in Stowe, Vermont. 


I am also apart of a group juried show at Studio Place Arts in Barre, VT called Uncommon Threads opening this August.  For more information please visit: http://www.studioplacearts.com/


The South End Arts District in Burlington, VT is also hosting the South End Art Hop on September 9-10th, 2011.  Although my studio will not be open for viewing this year, I will be a part of STRUT the fashion show taking place on Saturday the 10th exhibiting 6 of my most recent designs.


This summer and fall have proven to be busy and fruitful and humbling.  I would like to thank all of my friends and family for their continuous support and encouragement.  I would also like to thank all the folks who have been following my Dress That Makes the Woman Blog (http://dressthatmakesthewoman.blogspot.com) as well as those who have supported my online art auctions benefitting two major disaster relief funds.  Thank you. 


I would also like to thank the Vermont Arts Council for recently granting me a Creation Grant for the following year supporting me in the preparation of a show at the Duxbury Art Museum and Complex in Duxbury, Massachusetts called Self/Fabricated.  This show will open in September 2012 and will be up for several months.


 In addition to the Duxbury show, I am also scheduled for the following 2012 exhibits:


TBA, G Gallery, Houston, Texas, November 2012

The 3rd Floor, Flynn Dog Gallery, Burlington, VT, summer 2012


And Finally, The Dress That Makes The Woman project is winding down. It is hard to believe that  I am 3/4ths of the way done with the project.  I am currently working on putting together a show called The Final Stitch, featuring a special reception on November 6th to celebrate the finale of The Dress That Makes The Woman.  Please check my website for updates about where and when this will happen.  www.wyliegarcia.com


With all of these marvelous events and happenings and publications I feel so grateful.


Happy August and I hope to see you at one of these events in the near future,




Wylie Sofia Garcia