Mattress Factory

I’ve known about the Mattress Factory since around 2002 and it was one of my first exposures to the idea of installation art. Finally, 13 years later, and well into my own journey into making installations of 1% of the imagination, I made the journey there with my partner and our 3 month old baby. It was amazing!

(image above in Chiharu Shioto’s “Trace of Memory”. The rooms of the entire row home were woven with black string blurring the spaces.  )

We were there so long I ended up nursing baby twice and we ran out of time to go to the Warhol Museum. At one of the James Turrell installations – perhaps the darkest art work I’ve ever experienced. We walked up the ramp in a narrow hall way with a hand rail into the space and cheated by using a phone to see. It felt like a sight seeing look out at some place like a mountain range. We left, read the sign and went back into it, this time with no phone or other light source and sat there for the 15 minutes or so that was recommended to see it. That’s where I nursed baby and of course could not help but reflect on his time in the womb and how dark it must have been in there. It was nice to have the visual sensory deprivation. No photos from that one!

Our stop in Pittsburgh was on our way to Toledo with Plastic Fantastic to mark the one year anniversary of the toxic algae bloom, and at Mattress Factory we came across this installation where the artists (an architect and scientist) created an imagined  living room / domestic situation where people grew micro algae.

This was also where I nursed the second time that afternoon. A perfect environment.

image of Julie Schenkelberg‘s The Color of Temperance: Energy Embodied   And a video I loved how she broke down perhaps what was a bedroom from how it should be constructed and its purpose; what seems like should be debris and discarded, is given new life.

I enjoyed how the artists were focused on domestic spaces and our relationships to them.

Pregnancy Diary from Twitter Part 2

April 29th, 24 hours after my water broke, we greeted Oliver into the world. No live tweeting or google hang out from the labor room. Image is of Oliver on his 2 week old birthday! The entries below are tweets from the rest of the pregnancy portion of #babyoprep.

The cats look so big now, more like panthers.

Apr 28

37 weeks 1 day water broke, packed bags and on the monitor at hospital…perhaps last day of

Apr 26

Baking cookies on a Sunday morning. I can’t recall ever doing such a thing.

Apr 22

36wks 2d. whoa just totally had best idea ever, google hangout for during labor. friends & family w/ me, yes!

35w4d my uterus my uterus please let me be, my baby needs to cook for 4 more weeks ,

35 weeks 1 day, vlog still image from the jungle of ,

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35 wks! 35 days to go 🙂 To mark this, I’m chillin on a bench, being emotional bc crying in public better than at desk

34w5d sometimes when baby kicks it geeks like a gentle earth quake. Fiance says my sore throat was caused by snoring.

34w4d good week in . Found out there’s a few babies on our block. Can’t go out to any parties 2nite. Listening at home

34w2d happy for non stress test. Swimming with noodle in the pool; bonding w/moms on emotional outbursts in – so good

34 weeks! My 1st craving. To be surrounded and immersed in trees. Totally balled. Cats and my honey, next best.

33w6d pain yesterday fine today. Shot a pregnancy vlog. family time,both sides this wknd. All super excited. Nursery in progress

Pregnancy Diary

Keeping a diary on Twitter about my pregnancy, inspired by Mother Reader. Compiled below. Going forward the last six weeks the hashtag will be #babyOprep. I also keep a personal hand written diary covering a lot more of the nuances, thoughts, feelings and progress. My honey has been keeping one too. Once every so often we read our entries aloud to each other. We are due for a session.

33 weeks 1 day. His little feet are on the move and I can see them moving around near my ribs. It’s so cute!

32w3d fantasized eating a gallon of ice cream and chips for lunch while in wawa and blaming . Opted for tuna salad platter.

32w1d went swimming (if you can call it that) at the gym and it was amazing, floating, walking, weightlessness, somersaults, and hand stands

32 weeks! Ice cream followed by kick counting, just 7 minutes to get to ten. Now to write up my thoughts post art talk at Slought

31w6d feeling exhausted. scared. Productive day. Too tired for studio, aside from this diary tweet. My guy gives me strength ❤

Listen to baby beats 3/20/15 by Diedra on

31w4d, nonstress test went well. Basketball belly forming. Baby is moving & tickling me. They told me to do 10 kick counts in hour everyday

31w3d joined the gym for the pool. Cold weather is bad for the belly. Excited about all the baby movement. Rest is best on these cold days.

31w1d growth scan this morning went well. Relief. Estimated 4 pounds 5oz. Can feel baby moving around more too. Toured labor n delivery room

29w6d icecream whipped cream fudge n blueberry muffin for brkfast. Hair of the dog dessert hangover?

30w4d feeling better. Surprise baby shower at work, even my headphones were covered in tiny baby diapers. So many diapers & a Penn onesie

30 weeks 3 days. Pretty uncomfortable again. Some positive thoughts about pregnancy -universe’s work, contributing to life- came my way ❤

30 weeks 1 day. Birth class “your body will know what to do”

30 weeks! Everyday closer gets more & more real. Spring is in the air, getting excited! Birth class tmrw. Pregnant body is more vulnerable.

29 weeks 6 days. The end of another pregnancy week. Studio stuff is out of nursery to be. thinking too much: bacteria vs plastic leeching

29 weeks 5 days. tdap vaccine, check up (now go every 2 wks) on snow day. Recorded performance pregnancy video too. Art making feels good.

29 weeks 2 days. Lesson learned.don’t confuse a mole hill with a mountain

29 wks 1d. Very useful Comfort in Labor class. Time to make a birth plan and figure out where, if, when epidural.

29 weeks! Watching cloth diaper videos. Started with Charlie Banana & now related how to deal w/ baby poo vids

28 weeks 6 days I really want a geodesic dome shaped crib.

28 weeks 5 days Sexy Sober Sexy Sober Sexy Sober. Freak show themed baby shower, take a pic with the pregnant lady & bearded man? Too much?

28 weeks 4 days BRATOREOSPBC. Long list of to dos this weekend and on the mend. “nothing worth having comes easy!”

28 weeks 2 days. Getting better with the hours. More hydration. Suck it up with Braxton Hicks. No fear. Pain is part of it, says doctor.

28 weeks 1 day. Sorry to have to miss our 1st birthing class, but need for rest and recovery is winning. Brat diet ayurveda style day 2.

28 weeks! My 1st IV 2day. Baby has strong heartbeat. My mom says I can do this bc I’ve been through so much & proved endurance thru my art.

27 weeks 6 days. discomforts & pains (GI, baby position) yesterday, last night, this morning continues. If still there tmrw, Drs it is.

27 weeks 5 days started clearing out bedroom for baby. Art storage decisions. Need to disassemble bottle cap tetrahedron, it’s falling apart

27 weeks 4 days. Wildly sober. Forced into the experience of the now. Like waking up to a good dream. Even with the blood tests.

27 weeks 3 days. Humming on my way into work and at my desk. With 4 days left of 2nd trimester could this be the bliss I heard

27 weeks 2 days. Respect and Acceptance of the crazy work my body is doing. Grateful my honey gets it better than I could ever comprehend.

27 weeks 1 day. Restless night sleep. Trying to learn to only sleep on my side. Left side causes shooty pain in my back sometimes

26 weeks and 2 days. Every day is different. Like Beryl Markham said “every tomorrow ought not resemble every yesterday”

Very moved by Moyra Davey’s film and supplementary reading. Sat at the table, showed my friend my baby in belly pics

Dark Matter Art Project

While I love the idea of posting about art daily, and find inspiring ideas nearly everyday, posting a couple of times a month is nice too.

Finally finally finally … I am trying to complete a few projects and this is one of them…Dark Matter Art Project, the third sequence from Art Basel Miami Beach, December 2013, audio interviews vox pop style. I love the responses to these difficult but timely questions. Good stuff to think about as we start another year.

Inspired by Gregory Sholette’s “Dark Matter” and Jackie Battenfield’s “The Artist’s Guide”, artists, gallerists and art appreciators alike are asked three questions from Battenfield’s book:

What would make you feel successful as an artist?

What would make you feel successful in your relationships?

What would make you feel truly happy?