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!

Remember… EMPOWERED WOMEN, EMPOWER WOMEN.

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





janna watson

 

View this post on Instagram

 

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.





sungi mlengeya

Breathtaking! These are the bold, beautiful paintings of Tanzanian artist Sungi Mlengeya. Perfectly crisp and clean negative space, mixed with the gorgeous detail in the hands and facial expressions… somehow accomplished while using a purposely limited palette. Gorgeous. I also included the photo of Sungi in her studio so you could see, A. the scale of her work, and B. Sungi herself, obviously in her happy place. Here is part of her artist statement:

“The works consist of dark figures in minimal shades of black and browns against perfectly
white backgrounds with topics varying widely from self-discovery to empowerment, but common themes in her work are centred around women, specifically black women. She shades a light on their stories; their journeys,
struggles, accomplishments and relationships with their immediate societies, her stories included.

Sungi explores ‘space’ in her work, the white space in her paintings being any place that we are longing for. For her, the space represents a place of calm, free and detached from social norms and restrictions, real and imagined, that have altered complete liberty. She is inspired by everyday lives of women who surround her as they try to pursue their true preferences freely and uninhibitedly.”

Amen.





mouchkine

Well this gets the heart racing on the first Monday back to work, no? ART YOU CAN WEAR! Oh my word, I love every single one of these fun ‘n fabulous pieces {notice I kicked things off with Chuck and Di, obviously}. Mouchkine Jewelry is a collaboration between two French designers, Anne-Christine Nadal and Jean-Marie Boillot, who are also partners in life. Exquisite kitschiness, high and low materials living in perfect harmony, each piece handmade in France. Sigh. So, so fabulous. ps. Don’t you think Frida Kahlo would’ve worn all of this?





re-finding joy

Happy New Year! Hmmm, how should we celebrate? … PLEASE SEE PHOTO ABOVE … Yep, Ashley Longshore is back on the podcast for the fifth time (!?) and we’re stepping into this new year with as much optimism as humanly possible. That said, 2020 was rough on all of us – even the sparkly, go go go Ashley – so we talked a lot about how slowing down, and having to be truly vulnerable, changed the way we approach both life and art. Listen right up there under Ashley and her cheese {photo by James Letten}, or subscribe on Apple Podcasts and or Spotify.

First up. NATURE! Yes, Ashley has always been a lover of bugs, blossoms and butterflies. Here’s a little bit of bedazzled proof:

Gorgeous! And yes, that photo midway through is a real luna moth Ashley made friends with in her garden. Insane. Watch Ashley’s stories on Instagram… she really does have some “Mother F’N Nature with Ashley Longshore” going on in her backyard! Seriously, I would watch that TV show.

Next, a teeny peek at the really big work she’s been hoarding the past few months:

Huge, colorful, full of life. Yep, that sounds about right! Ashley will be releasing all of these new paintings at the end of January so keep an eye on her Instagram feed for updates.

Ahhh, and the clown self-portrait she just said goodbye to:

Yep, it’s hard to say farewell to your favorites. At least she’s going to a home that will love her very very much.

And finally, Ashley and I both want to wish you a super duper HAPPY NEW YEAR! May you ride into 2021 exactly like this:

Hahaha! Now that is how you put some JOY into your life! Thanks so much to Ashley for leading us into the new year with that firm handshake of hers; thanks to Create Magazine and their gorgeous new book – “The Complete Smartist Guide” – for supporting this episode; and of course, huge thanks to YOU for listening. There will be more art for your ear next weekend.

Other links:

  1. Ashley on Instagram
  2. St.Joseph’s Arts Society, San Francisco
  3. Article via ART News re: St.Joseph’s
  4. Petah Coyne on the podcast, Episode No. 186
  5. Create Magazine – Call for Art, Womxn’s Issue
  6. How To Spot An Artist {my children’s book}

 





miss.printed

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by miss.printed (@miss.printed)

HAPPY NEW YEAR! Let’s celebrate by taking some art out for a walk around the neighborhood… what?! So magical! Can you imagine coming upon any of these tiny masterpieces out in the wild? This Norway based Dutch artist – who goes by the alias Miss.Printed – is “filling the gap between collage, photography and street art”. Ummm, there is nothing I don’t love about this clever work. May your LIFE be filled with adventure, travel, and lovely art in strange places in 2021.

{Found via Kolaj Magazine}





colin roberts

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by colin roberts (@colinrobertsart)

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by colin roberts (@colinrobertsart)

I mean, you really need to see these beauties in action! Go click PLAY on those videos up there, I’ll wait. So gorgeous, right!? The way they catch the light, changing throughout the day. Stunning. I’ve written about LA based artist Colin Roberts before, but these plexi-glass pillows / disco balls could not scream NEW YEAR’S EVE 2020 more! Yep, I’m going to bed early so I can get a jump on this brand new year. Happy New Year to you and yours, see you in 2021.





haegue yang

Okay, I didn’t even know where to begin when it came to sharing the work of Berlin based, Korean artist Haegue Yang. She is so prolific, and has been since forever, therefore I just grabbed a bunch of my favorite pieces from over the years. One of the themes that ties them together, though, is movement… note the wheels, handles, and hit PLAY on that video above. Beautiful! So that’s already impressive enough, now allow me to share this … her work is currently showing at MoMA in New York, the AGO in Toronto, and the Museum of Contemporary Art and Design in Manila. All three of these exhibitions will be up until February 2021. She also has work showing at TATE St.Ives in Cornwall now until May 2021. I think that’s everything at the moment… but don’t quote me on that!