Saturday, October 13, 2012


This last 2 weeks, I spent about 15 - 18 hours altogether in my Installation "Practice" Space on campus. Here are some images from those days and nights:  I'm pretty much a huge ham and pretty bad abuser of the Photobooth App on my macbook.
The first night I got 3 walls sewn together, embossed with elastic, and hung from the wall (using duct tape at the moment - in the actual space I am going to use staples and nails). Draping and the way the fabric falls is very important to me in this room. I want to viewer to just be completely enveloped by the entire space.
In my actual room at the gallery, there are four 8 ft walls, two 4 ft walls, a fireplace (that measures 4.5 ft across), and a section of wall/panel/space that measures 5 ft 11 inches. The entire room is 9 ft 4 inches tall.
I've used 2 whole bolts of fabric (ranging from 23 yds to 30 yds, respectively.) and about a half a bolt. Today I bought a 3rd and ordered a 4th (just in case). If I had to guesstimate, I'd say I've used about 45 yds of fabric.
I love it. 
When I came in later in the week, the duct tape totally FAILED and everything was on the floor. So I folded everything up inside-out (so as not to get dirty) and continued measuring, cutting, and piecing the walls together with my sewing machine. And just in case any of you seamstresses out there are wondering, I use my grandmother's Janome from the 1980s. She gave it to me several years ago, along with the contents of her sewing room [that she left to me in her will].
I also thought it would be fun to "model" with the satin for a bit while I was cutting it. 
You do what you can to stay entertained. I think this was on the night I hadn't eaten anything for about 8 hours. I was silly. I AM silly.
Ooh, Model it, Grrrl.
Well, I'm off again to go sew and cause general mischief. 
Later this next week I am going to build a couple framing walls for the practice installation (with the help of Mr. Marcus).
Keep your eyes peeled though, my children, I just had an adventure at Crystal Bridges Museum (with the MSU Art History Club) and will post about it, as well as finding a book there called "PUSH Stitchery: 30 Artists Explore the Boundaries of Stitched Art." DROOL.

Go Make Something. Love you.

Saturday, September 29, 2012


Yes. Yes.
I am a bad blogger. But no more! I have given my blog a fresh makeover (a bit of one anyways) and will TRY from here on out to post AT LEAST once a week....

I'm sure I'll be bad again, but I'm busy making stuff and causing mischief dammit! Haha.

Here are some images of what has happened the last 3 months in my world:
1. I went to visit Carl at his painting residency in Philly at Tyler School of Art this summer - there are SO MANY PICTURES from that, I did you a favor by condensing them - unless you're an art history nerd like me. I went to the Philadelphia Museum of Art (that's Duchamp's Large Glass) as well as spending a day in New York at the MET with my buddy Carl. That's also a picture of me with Clae's Oldenburg's Large Button that sits in front of UPenn.

2 & 3. I've been experimenting with different acids, bleaches, dyes, as well as fire on fabric recently (thanks to one of my professors, Marcus, for babysitting me with said things. I probably would burn my face off if left by myself.) From left to right, it's peach cotton with a large thick weave, satin, and a weird thin synthetic rayon. 

4. Among fire and chemicals, I've also been dousing my fabric with wax. While I like the initial dripping wax action, I have mixed feelings about the final product. I really like this particular sculpture, but the other experiments don't feel the same...

5. My friend Skinny has been a sweetie and said she'll model for my Senior Show in the flower/paper embossed dress I made last semester (If you're going to be in or around Springfield - it's December 7th on Walnut Street at the Student Exhibition Center). My friend Claire is also going to be a model, but I am going to do a separate post about her dress as it's not finished yet. I'm so excited!

6. I had a 2 month show for the July & August Artwalks at the Downtown Clothing Exchange. Go visit the shop! Those girls are awesome!

7. Oh just some more silly fabric burning! Check the In the Studio tab for the results of those tests. Basically I was dousing this deep blue satin with rubber cement and lighting it. Word to the wise, don't do that and wear a maxi dress, you might catch you legs on fire, but that didn't happen to me. Hehe. Shifty eyes.

8. I moved out of my mama's house, into an apartment close to school and downtown. My roommate is a sweetie and an artist as well - we have some interesting adventures. Like when the ceiling started spewing brown water everywhere, or the other night - drunk on wine watching Hugh Laurie videos on youtube. YES. [that last picture in the strand is the view of our kitchen from lying on the couch].

I also learned this summer how strong I actually am. As a person, a woman, and an artist. When you think it's the end of the world, you cry for a week, then a window really does open to something better. I have the most supportive and loving friends a girl could ask for. Thanks for being my crying shoulders this summer, guys. Love You!

9. And just today I've been reading about female performance artists of the 1970s (Check the Monthly Inspiration tab) and the installation work of Ann Hamilton. 

Speaking of which, I just got the key to my "practice room" on campus where I will build the fabric installation that will go in my Senior Exhibition. Pictures & Artventures of that to come. Eek!

Today, I am listening to the Soundtrack to Lars Von Trier's Dancer in the Dark. Such an interesting and sad movie. Beautiful music. The soundtrack is called "Selmasongs" for all you curious cats out there.

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Benzie Box.

Oh man. It has been AGES.
I've been up to much mischief this summer, but unfortunately all of THAT will be my next post. This post is going to be about my end of semester work for Spring 2012. Graduation and my show are nigh. These were important steps and experiments I've made.....

This first one just started off as 12 yards of satin and 10 yards of tulle (you should've seen the lady at the fabric store's face when I said, "12 yards, please." She said, "Are you making dresses for a wedding or something?" and I said, "No. I'm an art student. I am going to hang this on the wall in a weird way." Silence. Haha).
No matter how hard I tried, I couldn't find a way I wanted it to be oriented that fit with my theme and general feelings about the piece as a whole.

Here are my adventures with the fabric. There were a gazillion images of my process with this one, but I saved you all from boredom and chose the best "catalyst"-like pictures that led me to the next step, which would eventually lead to the final product.

It started as just a wall hanging. Then I added wire and made a "hole" on one side....
Then when it didn't feel enough, I added the tulle.
Still not satisfied, I took it down (let it lay on the the ground for several hours, ignored it, yelled at it, kicked it, and listened to music instead of working.) and then hung it up again, but in a different way entirely. Still using the "hole," but being very aware of the way the satin was "pooling" on the floor. It was so beautiful! Very regal.
Unfortunately, it still wasn't what I wanted to express entirely. I do plan to make another "pooling piece," but this one will be way bigger. Taking it down again, disconcerted, I got on a ladder (almost falling and dying at one point) and pinned it up higher and used the wire frames in a new way - still being conscious of where the fabric was flowing and being pulled. Until....

I found IT. The way I wanted it to be. The fabric pulls looked intentional and beautiful and creepy all at once. And did I mention that the only thing sewn on this piece is the zipper (middle left, under the tulle)? Everything else is pinned on, giving the work a nice sense of impermanence and the possibility of being able to change its shape. This currently attracts me - conceptually.
PS this piece is about 6 ft. tall. Going bigger all the time!!

Then we have my final project for Painting III. Now I know what you're thinking - this is not a painting. Nope, I haven't actually painted in about 2 years for a class. But it is, afterall, my major still. Technically. I did use paint in this project though! This is fabric with waitress guest checks soaked in yellow/ivory house paint. The fabric is gorgeous - it has "flowers" that are textured on it and it is very thick and flowing. It is also 9.99 a yard. So I used it wisely. Haha. I have yet to take this piece off the mannequin, but I hope to have someone model it or a piece similar to it at my show (right, Claire!? Skinny? I need my models!).
This is the metamorphoses it went through (about a month's worth of work):

Printmaking this semester was really interesting as well. I used old pictures as references and experimented with printing on t-shirts as well as satin and silk. These are just the test prints on brown butcher paper....
Left is of me at 3 with the chicken pox and right is my brother and I (he's a pirate and drew his mustache on himself, that rascal) on Halloween about 1992. I made the chicken pox print into a t-shirt and made enough that almost all of my friends either have one or will get one (I'm making another batch soon!) My fella, Nathen, was nice enough to pose his shirt for me. As well as mimicking my face on the shirt. Haha.

This last picture is of my part of the studio at school - that I have pretty much taken over (The United States would be proud because I pretty much imperialized the space without asking), but it also shows another project I was involved with this semester. I posed for a drawing for my friend Kelsey's senior show (far left). Her show was compiled of life-size (if not a bit bigger and beautifully elongated) drawings of strongly posed female figures, hiding behind their hair. Giving it an almost anonymity/universal feel for each of the characters. I was very honored to be involved, as well as proud of myself for getting out of my shell (body-wise) and representing big beautiful females in the project. Thanks Kelsey! Proud of you! This picture also gives a nice scale reference to the peach satin wall hanging. It was huge!

Here's some jam for your week (the first one is for you, Carl, miss you! Go make some things in new places! You'll be great.):

More posts soon, I promise! I've been busy being lazy and squishy and sewing. If you're still reading this, I love you. XO.

Saturday, March 24, 2012

If Time Is Money, Then I'd Spend It All For You...

Experiments post! Yay!
And actually a couple of these I would consider finished pieces, but they are experimental in that they pushed me into using different materials (feathers!)or using materials I'm used to in a different orientation.

The Evolution of Dresses:

Or working with silk & tulle (to make a "presumed dress"), tulle and "feathered" and ironed wax paper, or plastic screen encircling photos of me as a child....
Based on the orange silk experiment, my next venture is this:

A (if all goes according to plan) 6 ft. wide silk drapery (the same orange color. It's so beautiful in the light!) with tulle details and wire armatures inside of it. It should be about 3 or 4 ft tall as well. It's going to take up my whole wall in the studio! I was going to work on it earlier this week (it was my spring break and I had so many plans!!), but for my 24th birthday the cosmos gave me Strep Throat. I went to the doctor on my birthday day and I think they gave me a free antibiotics shot - this is, afterall, the doctor that delivered me 24 years ago on this same day (he always calls me his "little stargazer" because I came into the world looking right up at him!) so I think he's a mite bias!
So, this weekend while doing my job in the studio as lab monitor, I will be working on this big silk project. And it's going to be great.
In other smashing news -
In the last couple weeks I have been involved in starting up a National Organization for Women Chapter for Springfield, and a week ago I was honored to be unanimously voted President of said chapter. I hope I can make everyone proud, and keep up with my duties. I've got a spit-fire VP and a lovely 3rd officer working with me (not to mention our beautiful members) and I am excited for what we can do for the rights of women everywhere, especially Missouri women. Lord knows, our state has been a little wishywashy towards ladies the last two decades - let's see what we can do! For news and updates visit the NOW National Website, the MissouriNow website, or our fledgling Springfield Chapter Facebook Group.
If you're interested in joining, donating, helping out - click the contact link and send me an email! Equal Rights For Everyone!

Here's some music for you. This one's for my fella.

PS I'm feeling much better now (on the left, I had 102.6 fever and was on my way to the doctor)! XO.

Saturday, March 17, 2012

White Blank Page.

AHHHHHHHHHHH. It's been a month since my last post. I know you all have been holding your breath, well here it is. A NEW POST.

So this last week, I had the pleasure/opportunity/joy of hanging a show at our local airport with two of my best friends; Carl & Ashley. Our professor (former professor for Carl & Ashley since those bums have since graduated) Sharon Harper asked us to hang work alongside hers at the Springfield Airport. You can see the show here (They've put my name as "Katie Platt" but eh I'm just happy to have work hanging there). I also find out this Wednesday if a couple pieces of mine were chosen to be in a show sponsored by the Kansas City Arts Coalition (KCAC), cross your fingers for me!!!
Excuse these photos, they were taken on my phone (we were so busy about hanging the work we all forgot our cameras. We are bums, I know.) - I plan to go back to the airport with a photographer friend sometime soon.....

Carl & Ashley were sweethearts and helped me (the novice) hang my work on the walls. They are super great. And their work is badass. Pictures don't do this show justice. Go see the show if you're near our airport anytime soon!!!

Jam for Your Week:

Ok, a post to follow soon with some more of my experiments and even some new work! I am currently preparing to make a fabric piece that will measure (if all goes according to plan) about 6 ft wide on the wall. Eek!!