Wednesday, December 6, 2017

Jane Peterson exhibit at the Mattatuck Museum

On Monday, after work, I drove to the Mattutuck Museum in Waterbury to retrieve my artwork, "Knight and Day" from the #IBelieveInWaterbury exhibit which just ended. The show's curator, Chelsea Garth, was a delight to work with and I hope you have the chance to meet her on day.

The new exhibit in the 2nd floor gallery is impressionist oil, pastel and gouache paintings by Jane Peterson. Below are a few examples of her work. She painted subjects in the United States and abroad, hence the show is titled, Jane Peterson: At Home and Abroad.

Live a simple creative life!

Friday, October 6, 2017

Knitting as Meditation

Although friends and family have encouraged me to meditate I have not adopted the traditional practice with any consistency. This is despite acknowledging the benefits for the body and mind, attending a Buddhist meditation retreat (that the DH and I attended at my son's request following his college graduation) and having friends send me 'Calm' app links.

But I do something that is in itself a form of meditation. I knit.  People have knitted for centuries. While nowadays it is often considered a woman's craft, military men throughout history knit socks and hats and sweaters.

One stitch at a time. Remember you don't have to create anything big or serious. And it doesn't have to be perfect. Stitch by stitch. One at a time.

Five favorite times to knit:

  • as a passenger on a long road trip
  • rainy day (with or without a glowing fireplace)
  • watching Netflix series
  • sitting with someone in a nursing home or hospital
  • waiting for anything
Live a simple creative life

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Pots and the Wheel

This summer the DH and I signed up for our first ceramics class at Wesleyan Potters in Middletown. It was a mixed level class and we required a lot more assistance learning to center on the wheel than others.

The DH hard a work 
Ready to fire

Live a simple creative life

Thursday, September 7, 2017

Mary Lachman @ Arts Center East and Mattatuck Museum

Let me be honest. This never happens, or at least it has never happened before. My artwork is juried into two juried shows, both of which have opening receptions on the same day but on opposite sides of the state.  Up until yesterday I thought I wouldn't make it to either one because I had plans to be in Florida but, then Hurricane Irma became a Category 5 hurricane and reservations will need to be cancelled. So....I am going to try to make it to both receptions! I hope you can join me.

"Water Spout" (on right above) will be at the Connecticut Women Artists (CWA) show at Arts Center East in Vernon,  September 1-29 (juror Nance Stula, Executive Director, The Benton, CT State Art Museum).

Arts Center East
709 Hartford Turnpike
Vernon, CT 06066
Opening Reception - Sunday, September 10th 2:00-4:00 p.m.

"Knight and Day" is debuting in the #IBelieveInWaterbury show at the Mattutuck Museum in Watebury, CT, September 10-December 3, 2017

Mattatuck Museum
144 West Main Street
Waterbury, CT 06702
Opening Reception - Sunday, September 10th  1:00-3:00 p.m., free and open to the public

Live a simple creative life

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

Fabric Collage - Shoreline Quilters

Eight amazing women from the Shoreline Quilt Guild joined me last month for a fabric collage workshop in Branford.  Below are some photos from the day.
Getting started

Works in progress

Clever triangulations

A spiral becomes a heart

This one reminds me of seagrass and ocean water

A bird on the wing

One amazing group of women - thank you!

Live a simple creative life

Friday, August 11, 2017

Mary Lachman... is excited about the CT Women Artist Show

'Water Spout' (on the right in the image below) was juried into the CT Women Artists show (CAW) at Arts Center East in Vernon, CT. I am thrilled and grateful to have my artwork included in this all media show!

Artsist reception: September 10th
Arts Center East
709 Hartford Turnpike
Vernon, CT 06066

Juror: Nancy Stula, Executive Director of The Benton, CT State Museum

Saturday, July 29, 2017

Back in the Studio

Inspired by the story behind the Carrie Welton Fountain in Waterbury I started a new piece.  Carrie Welton was a well-to-do woman who, among other things, donated a substantial amount of money to the Connecticut Humane Society in the late 1800's and also left money to have a statue built to honor her horse, Knight. The statue stands on the Waterbury green.

Up until now most of my work has been abstract rather than representational so this piece is definitely a detour into uncharted territory.

I began by printing out a small image of the statue that I found online.

I drew an image of a horse on fusible web and began placing fabrics for the body. After tacking the fabrics in place with a hot iron I cut out the horse.

Using different hand-dyed fabrics I experimented, auditioning for the background. It's fascinating how different shades and colors next to one  another can subdue or enhance another color.

I settled on a selection of cream, orange, red and blue, a combination which made me smile.
I have a friend who says she always sees movement in my work and elements of water and fire. She thinks it is because I am a water sign.  Yes, LOL,  he still needs a tail!

What elements do you are repeated in your work? I would love to know. Leave a comment if you like. And check back to see how this is progressing. 

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Weekend in Vermont - Part 2

On up the mountain on a rainy morning we drove turning on to a dirt road that seemed to go straight up and disappear into a forest of hemlock and white birch. A bald eagle escorted us along a stretch of the river! Up, up,up to an ancient farmhouse red paint dull from many winter storms. Original wrought iron latches and no doorbell. But then to my delight out popped Drim to greet us. (Drim is a nickname and the story of how it came to be is long so I will not go into it now. Just know that it is an endearing term given her by family.)

That warm welcome set the stage for a wonderful, the dreary wethered weekend. From a dinner of homemade pizza with mozzarella, tomato, basil, garlic and capers to breakfast of fresh fruit and yogurt, local bacon and great coffee we had a great time. The house, which from the road appeared small, was actually a rambling space with a writing studio for Drim's dear husband, an art studio for her and many other large and small rooms scattered throughout. Every nook and cranny was a feast for the eyes!

In the kitchen the pots and pans hung from iron hooks mounted on the old oak beams that crossed the space. Juxtiposed were paintings and sculptures of big colorful chickens. On the counter a magnolia tree waited for Nature's cue to bloom and bright red chairs flanked each side of a short narrow table where we spent the most time talking and laughing.

Weekend in Vermont - Part 1

Last Saturday I had the good luck to drive with a friend to Vermont to visit one of her friends. I had never stayed overnight at someone's house that I did not know so I was slightly anxious about it all.

On the way there we stopped in Northampton, Massachusetts at the Woodstar Cafe. I just love the Ginger Chai Latte they make. And then it was an hour more north on Route 91 to the town of Newfane.  Driving through Brattleboro on Cedar Street we saw a chicken rock, a pig rock and a toad rock. These were wonderfully large mosaics that encompassed grand rocks in a front yard but were cleverly arranged to resemble creatures. What serendipity!
Frog Rock in Brattleboro
Live a simple creative life-

Tuesday, March 7, 2017

Musings on Creativity

Like many creative people I have been making 'stuff' since childhood.  From Halloween costumes to pants to handbags to hooked rugs I made it all. The scrap bag in the closet was my go to place.

So why then has it taken me more than 40 years to realize that 'making' was food for my soul? I am so much happier when I am stitching or painting or writing. And when I consider the times when I wasn't it explains the drab nature of those days. And all this time I thought I was just not cut out to be a mother.

On that note, why not pick up your pencil and jot down the top 3 creative things you would like to work on this weekend? You might want to try a new recipe, or sketch a cardinal at the bird feeder, or doodle. The key is to write it down and then begin.

Yes begin. And that might mean buy the ingredients for that new recipe, or just photograph the birds. Getting started is often the hardest part for many people.

Have a good weekend.
-Live a Simple Creative Life

Saturday, February 4, 2017

New on the Dance Floor

Here is one of my new projects, spread out on my studio floor. I made the stars during a weekend snowstorm several weeks ago. The small nine patches (based on 1.5 inch squares) have been in a shoe box waiting for the right time.

I made more stars and squares at a quilt retreat two weekends ago but still need a few more. This project is entirely scrappy. I will share additional details on making the blocks soon.

Star Studded by Mary Lachman 2017