Hunting for Mysteries Opens March 5

I'm excited to announce: my first solo show at Wally Workman Gallery opens next month in Austin! I will be traveling to Austin to deliver the work and will be present for the preview party on Thursday, March 3 and the opening reception on Saturday, March 5. There is an artist talk on Thursday night, so please come to hear about this new body of work.

I have been in hibernation since September working through this new work, inspired by a wonderful two-week adventure in Iceland last year. I started by spending the month of October digging up ideas during an artist residency at the Millay Colony for the Arts in Austerlitz, NY (near the home of poet Edna St. Vincent Millay). With four walls of space and complete isolation, I delved into a magical land of icebergs, northern lights, and geothermal forces.

Images from Millay Colony residency

Images from Millay Colony residency

Inspirations for Hunting for Mysteries include cranes, sea vessels, turfhouses, and lighthouses with the addition of natural elements such as icebergs and rock formations. Iceland's strong natural forces of the earth and sea prompted me to go underneath the ground plane in my compositions, playing with underwater and sectioned landscapes.

Preview work from the show here.

Inspiration images from Iceland

Inspiration images from Iceland

More Mechanical Playthings

In 2014 I received a Regional Artist Project Grant from the United Arts Council of Raleigh and Wake County to create kinetic sculptures based on what I learned from my Mechanical Playthings workshop at Penland. This past spring I made two new kinetic sculptures that are now showing at the Working Wonders show at Gallery A in Raleigh.

The first is a pumpjack, as found bobbing up and down in the fields of Texas. This mechanical object creates motion by converting rotary motion to vertical reciprocating motion and is called a "walking beam" in engineering. In my sculpture a handle turns two blue gears that connect to a red plywood beam, making it bob up and down. Hanging from the red beam is a golden yellow paper spiral that moves with the beam.

To create this sculpture I started by making a foam core mockup with gears generated from an online gear template. When this worked, I proceeded to cutting out the real parts from plywood and wood dowels using small saws. To stabilize the sculpture, I poured a Rockite base with wood connectors to screw to the tower and gear structure. For the paper spiral I assembled small sections of paper to build the spiral shape and connected it with delicate thread to the red beam.

The second new sculpture is a tipple, a structure used at a mine to dump and sort coal or rock. I referenced simple wooden tipple structures photographed by Bernd and Hilla Becher to draw my tipple on paper at full-size. I then used this drawing to build my three-dimensional tipple structure, complete with ramp track and chute. Now, I had to figure out how this thing would dump its contents. I built a foam core cart and through trial and error, created a platform with a lever to tip the cart and send the blocks down into the basin. I again made a Rockite base with a cast basin for catching the colorful blocks in the cart.

These kinetic sculptures are on display at Gallery A from July until September 30. Visitors to the gallery and office are welcome to play with them! Come by on Thursday, July 30 6:30-8:30 for the opening reception and we can play together!

Ready for Artfields 2014

I am competing for prizes at the second-annual Artfields, a 10-day art competition where artists hang work inside the buildings of the small town of Lake City, South Carolina and compete for prizes. Artists enter one work and compete with 400 artists from the southern region. I was chosen to display my kinetic installation Escape Plan in the Downtown Bakery & Deli on Main Street.

This weekend my husband and I drove down to Lake City to install Escape Plan. It was raining, but Craig had built a quick OSB cover for the back of his truck and kept the tower painting panel dry. I had visited the bakery earlier this month to determine location and outlets, so hanging the panel and return wheel was straightforward. The next step was trickier - measuring new rope to fit the site, sewing on the 17 gondolas to the new spacing (with hard-to-cut kite string), then getting the rope to stay on the wheels and move around steadily at the right speed. I picked a fun location - running over the heads of people ordering their food. It is ready to go for the competition that runs April 25-May 4. If you are in SC, you can visit and vote on your favorite piece (wink, wink).  

Spring Flowers

I now have two window displays up for spring, one in Chapel Hill, NC for the Downtown Windows of Chapel Hill project, and one at Nüvonivo children's boutique in Raleigh, NC. 

For the Windows of Chapel Hill "Flower Box" installation, I used flatter flowers of paper and fabric that were machine sewn and layered with foamcore for depth. I made all of the flowers and leaves before installation day and then on site cut the blue backdrop paper and trellis sticks to size. Installing a window with wind gusts, the weather chill, and all kinds of people walking by was a new experience. The parking meter was going and I had to cut, pin, glue and get it up there quick.

For the Nüvonivo spring window, the Maloufs wanted to reuse their "snow globe" window decal, so I imagined a terrarium with tall paper grass and big paper flower vines growing up the back walls. I made these flowers more three-dimensional, out of layers of paper and foamcore. The monarch butterflies are made of yellow cardstock, hand-drawn black ink lines, polka-dot fabric, and black pipe cleaners.

Spring Window Installation

My proposal was accepted for Windows on Chapel Hill, a pop-up art installation in empty storefronts of downtown Chapel Hill, NC. This is a spring window, so I will be using bright and colorful paper and fabric to create a variety of flowers growing on wood trellis structures, titled "Flower Box." My window will be in the Walgreen's display window at 108 E. Franklin St from February 25 - May 30.


Coming Attractions

Summer is here and just a few more months are left to prepare for my show at Artspace. I have the giant roller coaster complete as well as a few more rides. Here's a sneak peak of the construction. The big show is:

Thought Maps & Ladders

Ray Duffey and Becky Joye

Artspace Gallery 1

September 14 - November 9, 2013


The Magic Place

I am designing an amusement park which will open in the fall of 2013 at Artspace. Within the park a group of islands called The Magic Place is under construction. At Designbox on March 1, I will have the islands open for a special viewing.

Venture to The Magic Place to find a group of islands with a kaleidoscopic playscape of twists and turns. Climb in to The Lookout for a secret view of the main land. Ascend The Tree Houses for a ride down the giant swirly slide. Sneak to another island through wandering chutes and underground tunnels. At The Magic Place, magic is waiting for you at every corner!

The Magic Place
Raleigh, NC
Opening Friday, March 1, 6-10 pm
Continues through March 29