Saturday, November 5, 2011

Camera, Zipper, Tights: the whole catastrophe

...allow me to explain...

It starts with the anticipation of this weekend.  This weekend, the final weekend, the end of my year wearing a dress everyday, working or attempting to work everyday on this dress, these dresses... Oi-vey!  Everything was being planned according to how I though I wanted this project to neatly end, like a pretty little package.  I was prepping for a first Friday art opening at the S.P.A.C.E. Gallery for their Make Art Repeat Show where the project originated a year ago.  The only decision that needed to be made was how is this project going to be displayed? As photographs? On models? On a clothing rack? On dress forms?  Well photos were not enough. This project was about these dresses on me, and their relationship to me, my body, my personality, my space, my art, my daily life, so models we out.  A clothing rack meant that people might take the garments off, touching them, moving them, which is no good... So dress forms it is.  

I had been watching a lot of Joseph Campbell lectures and was really inspired by the power and the symbol of the circle. Round. Continuous. A record of eternal passage, and yet directional in some cultures with a clear North, South, East, West.  So the gals, ie. The dresses on the dress forms, all 11 of them, were assembled in a circle in the gallery, all facing inwards, all looking at each other.  What are they thinking? Are they checking each other out? Are they proud? Happy? Sad?  I don't have an answer... I know, I know, I installed them, so what was I thinking?  I was thinking about the power of a year. The recorded history of one year in my life. Powerful. Humbling. Awkward. And lovely.... At least this is what I am feeling at this time... And then wham, an opportunity arrises..... Go to Houston,TX for the opening of my aunt and uncles's collection of Czech art.... This is a collection that is not only historic, but also one with which I have a huge connection to, they were building it as I was going to college at the University of Chicago.  I got to know it intimately as it was being defined, I photographed her bohemian glass pieces before there was ever a catalogue, I  helped move the collection from Chicago to Houston...because of this collection I was introduced To many wonderful people, artists, collectors, critics, curators... How could I pass this opportunity to see it in it's glory at the museum of fine arts, Houston?  But what about the dress project?

Here was my chance to wear my final dress, on one of the last days, to a social event in Houston with my family, and be me, wearing one of my own creations, what an fantastic end to such transformative and important project in my career as an artist.  

So I go to Houston and when I get there i pull out my camera to photograph the progress of the dress and the camera battery is dead.  Did I remember to pack the charger? No. Oops!  So I ask my brother to help me document things with his iPhone.  The night of the opening I am getting ready, hair done, nails done, make up done, new fancy tights with a sexy pattern, and my awesome heels, and the dress goes on and everything is looking good and then... Zipper... Zipper... Zipper.....come on now zipper... I know you will go up... Please, please go up.... Go.... FUCK!!!... Deep breath.... Sigh.... Commence the hearty chortle... The zipper is broken. The project is done, but not without snagging my awesome new tights and ripping a hole in them too...

My thoughts, were first to ask, why? Why tonight of all nights? Why did you have to take out the tights too?  But then I let go.... Because, dear dress, you are telling me that our relationship is over.  That you have had enough, and that tonight for the first time in a year, I have to go solo and just go as me.   

Begin forwarded message:

Sent from my iPhone

1 comment:

  1. Fitting (bah!) how the project started and ended with you being just 'you'. yourself in the wholeness of just that. Sometimes our clothes simply shrug us off, instead of the other way 'round.

    How very cool that the year has ended so successfully for you.... I look forward to the calendar shoots.