Sunday, October 4, 2009

Open Studios

Every October my friend Rowan and I go to tour Boulder's fabulous Open Studios: a program that invites the public into the studios of hundreds of local artists for two consecutive weekends. Yesterday we visited sculptor Alison Small, who creates her works from mountain-hewed stone as she gazes out at stunning views of our Boulder mountains - water colorist Anne Gifford who designed the artwork for this year's world-renowned Bolder Boulder 10K race- quilter and fabric artist Carol Watkins, and three others.

I love to be in the space of so much beauty and creativity in one afternoon. It's wonderful to see the art, of course, but even more wonderful to enter the world of the artist: to see how artists create not only their art, but the conditions under which they can create their art. I fall in love not only with their work, but with their whole lives.

Take Carol Watkins. She has spent time as an artist-in-residence at Mesa Verde National Park and at Rocky Mountain National Park - living in the parks in park cabins for weeks at a time to soak up inspiration for her astonishingly detailed and beautiful quilts and thread paintings. Oh!Now I want to be an artist-in-residence in a national park. Don't you?

I came home and looked at my own little office with a more critical eye.

I do love it, love it dearly - but does it exude creative joy like the spaces I visited yesterday? Can I do anything to enhance its potential for creative joy? For one, I'm going to stop calling it my office and start calling it my studio.

And then I'm going to Google "artist-in-residence national park" and see what I can find.

1 comment:

  1. I think you should apply for the William Allen White cabin. I remember reading about it many moons ago. It would be a lovely, nourishing thing to do. And I think you need to meet fellow Boulderite Faith Gowan of (one of my favorite early literacy sites). She loves Open Studios as well.