renee nixon

Found images ‘n embroidery… one of my most favorite combinations! Also one of my favorite things… work that focuses on empowering women. This is an ongoing series by Seattle based artist Renee Nixon titled “Recombombulated”. Here are her words about this project, and how you can purchase a piece:

“These ladies are, quite literally, my attempt to work through harm done to myself (and so many others) by callous, entitled, powerful men. They are also a direct representation of the work we have done, and continue to do, to stitch our lives and ourselves back together. There is no going back, but perhaps there is a new kind of beauty in the strength to move forward.”

So powerful. Now, if you’re thinking you’d like to buy one…  “I’ve had offers to buy some of my ladies, but it felt a bit like a betrayal to sell something so intrinsically tied to myself and my experience. Instead, I’ve decided to gift them in exchange for a donation to the King County Sexual Assault Resource Center, or something similar in your local area if you don’t live in Seattle. There’s no minimum donation, but I do hope that you’ll give (very) generously. Just tell me you donated today (or any future day), and I will send you a lady. Requests for specific ladies will be honored on a first-come, first-serve basis.” Amazing.

jean shin

Bits of Mountain Dew bottles take over the landscape in “Invasives”, and hang like a glowing chandelier in “Floating Maize”. Oh my, yes, this is my kind of recycling program! These are just two of many installations by New York based artist Jean Shin. I happen to love these two works, but her materials certainly are not limited to green beverages! …

Jean Shin is nationally recognized for her monumental installations that transform everyday objects into elegant expressions of identity and community. For each project, she amasses vast collections of a particular object—prescription pill bottles, sports trophies, sweaters—which are often sourced through donations from individuals in a participating community. These intimate objects then become the materials for her conceptually rich sculptures, videos and site-specific installations. Distinguished by her meticulous, labor-intensive process, and her engagement of community, Shin’s arresting installations reflect individuals’ personal lives as well as collective issues that we face as a society.

Follow her on Instagram to see what she’s up to, in progress shots, how to make dumplings, etc. Note: Jean’s dog, Trevor, was not officially part of the work… but he is a very cute photo-bomber!

rebecca hutchinson

Gasp! Hanging from the ceiling, lying on the floor, mounted on the wall… these gorgeous cone-like blooms are everywhere! Now, what are we looking at here? I have no idea. Well, I have some idea. There’s paper handmade using recycled materials (like old clothes!?), porcelain – both fire and unfired, and handmade paper coated in porcelain… maybe? Okay, I’m not totally sure, so that’s why I’ve invited Massachusetts based artist and educator, Rebecca Hutchinson, to come on my podcast to us her story AND how she does what she does! Until then, I’ll leave you with her artist statement:

“In nature there are diverse states of existence; the structure of nature, interactions between forces of nature, the resilience and the complexity of engineering in nature. All these states are rooted in the motivation for the need to survive, providing endless visual influences and conceptual possibilities for art making; speaking to the depth and complexity of living with the hopes of revealing the human condition in sculptural form.

Using diverse processes, my interest is in quality of craft, connections, structure, and conceptually to all physical parts to the whole. I build site-responsive sculptural works made from clay and recycled materials, like old clothing or industrial surplus. I hand build, slip trail, dip, layer, cut and construct with the surplus and handmade materials. Works are influenced by growth patterns, but do not replicate nature. Like an animal that uses the vernacular from place, I too up-cycle humble materials into exquisite sculptural forms.”

Yes, this is going to be a very interesting episode… So. Many. Questions! Stay tuned.

antonio santin

Oil. Paintings. Would you like a moment to catch your breath? This some of the most recent exquisite, meticulous, jaw-dropping work of Madrid based painter Antonio Santin. I had to include the closeups, and the extra extra closeups so all of the insane details could be seen. I can’t even imagine how long you’d have to stand in front of one of these beauties to take it all in. Color, texture, details (look at those little green birds!). Stunning. Here’s some insight into his practice:

Deeply rooted in the tradition of Spanish Tenebrism as well as his own training as a sculptor, Santin juxtaposes flattened planes with tangible forms carved by light and shadow to create a continuous perceptual dialogue in each work. The rug series evolved from his ongoing interest in the opacity of fabric as a device to obscure with abstract patterns and textures.

Antonio has a solo show opening this week, January 14th – March 5th at Galerie Isa in Mumbai, India.

rachel gregor

Ahhh, this is the dreamy work of Kansas City based artist Rachel Gregor. I couldn’t decide if I loved her figurative work {two of the above are self portraits}, or her still life fruits & florals {all of which are odes to artists from the past}… so you’re getting both on this fine Monday morning! Some of these gorgeous paintings are oil on canvas, others are gouache on paper… can you tell which are which?!  ps. A few of Rachel’s paintings are part of an upcoming show, titled “Lush” at Hashimoto Contemporary in NYC. January 16th – February 6th.

“hidden mothers”

Today is a two for one episode … sort of. New York based artist Petah Coyne popped in for the first fifteen minutes to so we could tell you about IN TANDEM (yay!), and then I did a full interview with Philadelphia based artist Sarah Detweiler aka @sd_artifacts. Note: Sarah and I discovered that we are both OVER-SHARERS, so brace yourself. We covered everything from 9/11 and miscarriages, to mothers draped in tablecloths,  and whether or not we’ve skinny-dipped. Spoiler alert: we both have. You can listen right up there under “Hidden (Earth) Mother”, or subscribe on Apple Podcasts and or Spotify.

First up, here are the images from my 2017 post about Sarah:

See? Already so dreamy and really starting to come together… and then, the HIDDEN MOTHER series! ps. the first painting/embroidery piece below is the first one Sarah ever did. It is titled, “Hidden (Grieving) Mother”:


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A post shared by Sarah Detweiler | Art (@sd_artifacts)

Ooooh, that glowing embroidered rainbow! Speaking of rainbows… how on earth did we not speak of rainbows!? Luckily I was able to do a little post-podcast research. This is the book, “The Rainbow Way”, that Sarah found when she threw herself down the “rainbow as archetype” rabbit hole, and the passages that brought everything together for her:

Creative Rainbow Mother. Seriously, how perfect is that?!

Next up, the fabulous piece that Sarah collaborated on with Kelly Kozma as part of their group show {that also included Han Cao aka @hanwriting} last July at Paradigm Gallery in Philadelphia. Here is Sarah’s painting, and the tapestry by Kelly that inspired it:

Ah, I love it! Amazing female artists working together to create even more amazing things!

Okay, there’s no way I could NOT include these super weird photographs in this post. Here are a few original, very Victorian, and totally bizarre ‘hidden mother’ portraits:

I mean, WHAT? Hilarious and creepy, and totally inspiring … in a super weird way.

And finally, here’s what I was looking at while we recorded:

Ah, so cute… and then she started doing the ‘pee pee dance’ in her chair {don’t worry, she made it in time!}. Thank you so much to Sarah for over-sharing with me, thanks to Petah for popping in at the beginning to share our ideas, and thanks to you for listening! ps. If you want to know more about “IN TANDEM” check out THIS POST on my site. There will be more ART FOR YOUR EAR next weekend.

Other links:

  1. Sarah on Instagram
  2. Kelly Kozma, Artist
  3. Seth Clark, Artist {his AFYE episode}
  4. Tara Centybear aka centybearstudios, Artist
  5. Paradigm Gallery, Philadelphia
  6. Lucy H. Pearce, Author
  7. “In Tandem” Guide /  #intandemart2021
  8. Petah Coyne, my pARTner! {her AFYE episode}


in tandem

In the fall of 2020, New York based artist Petah Coyne, and I –  Canadian artist/author Danielle Krysa – started meeting online to share our work, perspectives, process tips, and goals. Very quickly, Petah and I realized what a huge impact our bi-monthly meetings were having on both of us. How could we possibly keep this new super power to ourselves?! Every woman should experience the same kind of supportive, female-powered creative partnership that we’ve found. And so here we are, at the beginning of a year long experiment (or longer if you love it), that Petah and I are calling “In Tandem”.

IN TANDEM : Two female artists, working together to move forward – both peddling, each steering at different times.

Step No.1 : Choose your “pARTner”

Yes, we’re putting the ART in pARTner! Make a short list of female artists you’d like to work with. You could pick someone in your current circle of creative friends / acquaintances, or reach out to somebody you’ve always admired – you might not know them very well now, but if they say YES, that won’t last long! Choose an artist that will help move your work forward, and vice versa. If you’re a painter who wants to start incorporating your own images, perhaps you should team up with a photographer. Do you admire the way someone sells their art without fear on Instagram, but you have no idea where to start? Maybe she’s your match. And whether you realize it or not, you’ll have support, advice and insights that you can offer in return. Here’s the thing, you don’t need to assemble a huge group, you just need ONE person to hop on with you.

Step No.2 : Make a Schedule

… and then commit! Yes, put those first few dates in your calendar immediately. This schedule is, of course, completely up to you and your pARTner. You can meet as often as it works for the two of you. Every Saturday morning, every second Tuesday afternoon – whatever makes most sense in your lives, but be sure you DO IT! If something comes up, fine, but reschedule ASAP. This will not work if you don’t connect with each other regularly.

Step No.3 : Talking Points

Again, deciding on the content of your get-togethers will be up to you and your pARTner. Arrive to each meeting with a list of at least three things you want feedback on, questions you have, etc. What was the biggest success you had between meetings, what was the biggest setback? The key to these conversations is honesty. Express what you truly want and what’s stopping you from getting there. Share the experiences you’ve had that pushed you forward or slowed you down. FOCUS on what you want / how you’re going to get there, and then do the same for your pARTner.

Step No.4 : Record

Most of these sessions will probably happen online because of social distancing – there’s also a pretty big chance your pARTner lives on the other side of the planet! We’d love for you to hit RECORD on your video calls for two reasons. One, it’s so helpful to go back and re-listen/re-watch them after the fact. Perhaps you can’t remember a resource your pARTner mentioned, or maybe you’ll learn something important by watching the way you talk about your work. And two, at the end of this year long experiment, it would be amazing to have video clips of hundreds of IN TANDEM journeys from women all over the world. If Petah and I are right, there will be some huge transformations for all of us between now and December 2021… and who knows, maybe there’ll be a short film documentary in there somewhere!

Step No.5 : Building a Community

If you and your pARTner would like to share your work / progress with everyone else in this women-powered global group, please hashtag your Instagram posts with #intandemart2021. By following that hashtag, you’ll quickly find so many other female artists sharing everything from new-to-you techniques, to calls for shows that weren’t even on your radar. Sharing (and hashtagging!) this information will make our female-powered community, and its resources, grow exponentially!

Step No.6 : Go!


*In Tandem, in action! This is a screenshot from our last call… and yes, that’s Petah’s studio!?

janna watson


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A post shared by Janna Watson (@jannawww)

Pure joy! Literally… this is Joy. She’s the niece of one of my favorite painters, Toronto based artist Janna Watson {jpgs do NOT do these large-scale beauties justice}. I posted this video of Joy in action before the holidays because, HELLO, we all need this kind of pure unbridled happiness in our lives, right? Janna completely agrees, so much so that her newest show, that opens at Bau-Xi in Vancouver this Saturday January 9th, is titled “Finding Joy”. Here’s the description:

This series is dedicated to and inspired by Joy, the artist’s three-year-old niece, and in it Watson collapses pictorial and physical space to tell visual anecdotes of the time they spent together. An escape from the bouts of seriousness and isolation that punctuate adult life, this new and different headspace is reflected in Watson’s most-recent work, which is playful, spontaneous, and imbued with delight.

“In a time where it’s hard to know what’s right and everything is so complex, I was drawn to the simplicity around Joy … Sometimes life happens and we forget what it feels like to be free.” ~ Janna Watson

Ahhh, so true! ps. the red painting above is titled “Fly Horsie!”… for obvious reasons! The show runs until Jan 23rd.

janaina mello landini

Rope! … on the walls, on the floor, on the ceiling! This is the absolutely breathtaking work of Brazilian artist Janaina Mello Landini. Perhaps it takes my breath due the lung-like pathways? Either way, I’m in awe and feeling the need to take a deep, cleansing breath. With a background in both architecture and fine art, Janaina twists and ties twine into the most magical of artworks:

Her artistic output encompasses her knowledge of architecture, physics, and mathematic and her observations about time, to weave her worldview. Her work transits between different scales – from the object to public spaces.

Aaaand exhale.

myleka bevans

“Encounters with Grief”, was shown at the Franklin S. Harris Fine Arts Center in the Fall of 2020. This is the emotional installation work of Canadian born, US based artist Myleka Bevans. I was already so moved by these gorgeous works constructed out of balloons, clouds, flowers and toys… but then I read her statement, and my heart dropped:

In 2016 Myleka lost her premature daughter Bridget at five days old. This experience informs much of Myleka’s most recent work. Her Art examines grief, her own and others, and its effects on individuals and communities. Myleka works in many mediums but views herself primarily as an installation artist. 

“Grief is a lonely time but you are being welcomed into a community, a club other people are waiting to comfort you and stand with you. Grief can bind communities together and it will enrich your life if you allow it to.” ~ Myleka Bevans

Beautiful work by a wonderful mother and artist. You can watch & listen to Mykela’s IGTV walkthrough of the exhibition. Bring a tissue.