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Old 06-22-2007, 04:48 PM
 
Location: Journey's End
10,189 posts, read 24,922,354 times
Reputation: 3840

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I have decided to go spend a month in the woods at a friends starting next week--probably might clear the cobwebs that are clinging to my scalp, so I may or may not be able to update my personal progress.

But....please everyone, keep posting.

And, stormweary, please update us on the Tampa and St. Pete's excursions.
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Old 06-23-2007, 09:32 AM
 
1,569 posts, read 3,087,395 times
Reputation: 924
I'm in Virginia still and ready to go back home. When I first got here, I thought....maybe..... But too many people, too much asphalt. Norfolk is a fun place to visit but it is not giving me that "home" feeling. I need more wild nature places without driving five hours. Even the ocean had the illusion of being tamed. Although I've had fun at Colonial Williamsburg, Norfolk Botanical Gardens and the Elvis weekend in Virginia Beach. Have fun in the woods OTR.

http://i89.photobucket.com/albums/k218/dancingearth/IMG_6939.jpg (broken link)
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Old 06-24-2007, 01:51 PM
 
7 posts, read 9,292 times
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OTR, have a wonderful time in the woods. I have cleared my cobwebs many times emersing myself in nature's beauty. As for my permission to use whatever I have contributed to this thread, you have it. Of course if you need my real name... How do we do that?
Now I have a tip for checking out an art town. Last Saturday I went to an artist's well publicized afternoon of open studio. She's a good artist, a charming outgoing person, and everything is extremely underpriced. Her work is "accessible". Eight people showed up and I was one of two artists. So it is clear that there is not much interest in art and that the artists who live here don't demonstrate an attitude of support for other artists who are sticking their neck out by inviting everyone to their studio. Not my idea of "community". I had a wonderful time, but I am out of here! Now I have mentioned before that I live in Mexico. But this is not a statement about Mexico and when I say I am out of here I don't mean Mexico, I mean Cuernavaca where they estimate the North American foreign population to be in the thousands. I am going to Morelia where there is a good art school, an artist exchange program with artists from New York, an international film festival, a lovely modern art museum, a very educated population, a downtown that looks like Spain, and affordable real estate. There are few N. Americans but that's why it's affordable. And my Spanish is a nightmare. Scary! but I think my decision to move there is right on. I also like the idea of being useful and when I lived there 7 years ago people were very receptive, very interested in art and what I had to share. The art scene has become modern and so more vibrant than when I lived there, judging from these projects. I have projects in mind too. I also have several good American friends who live 30-50minutes away where the trees, and mountains are.

Cape Ann would undoubtedly be incredible but thanks to OTR's generous sharing of information, I know I would probably end up back in Mexico for lack of funds! I will undoubtedly lurk this thread that has been such good company.
Hopefully some store in Morelia carries the NY Times, for occasionally getting a Sunday edition!
letsgosee
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Old 06-25-2007, 09:53 AM
 
Location: Journey's End
10,189 posts, read 24,922,354 times
Reputation: 3840
Thanks letsgosee for your update. I am hoping that your move within Mexico proves to be a huge personal success. It sounds like the town offers some of those special "ingredients" we all want in an artist town.

To answer your question about the hows: If I do undertake writing a book or even a monograph on artist towns, I'll send a PM (personal message) to those contributing here and ask for their approval, real name, and credit them appropriately. I'd also probably have a list of questions for those willing to contribute more fully. Somewhere among my stored items I have a tear sheet of an article I wrote for an art publication in NYC ten years ago that touches on the issues of an art community. When I get settled it may be the jumping off point for a larger article or more.

I believe some of the contributors may not be following the thread, or do so, infrequently, but that will be the only way to communicate.

And, tomorrow I am off to the woods--quite a few black flies, and a landscape designed for meditative thinking.
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Old 06-25-2007, 09:54 AM
 
Location: Journey's End
10,189 posts, read 24,922,354 times
Reputation: 3840
Dancingearth--didn't realize you were in Virginia.

Looks like a good time!
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Old 06-25-2007, 05:40 PM
 
1,569 posts, read 3,087,395 times
Reputation: 924
Quote:
Originally Posted by ontheroad View Post
Dancingearth--didn't realize you were in Virginia.

Looks like a good time!
Yep, for one week. I was so happy to drive the small roads in Olympia after being in the Norfolk area--seemed to be all 4-6 lane highways and people in the east. We got in a traffic jam 10:30 at night! I was in the car more than I've been in six months combined. I really can't live in a big metropolitan area unless there is mass transit. I would hate spending hours in a car every day. What a waste of time. But since I want a kiln and potter's wheel and a place I could build a wood kiln, I need to be rural anyway. How did potter's in NYC do it? Or don't ceramic artists live in cities? They do only gas or electric firing? Hmmmm....I wonder if there is a difference in the type of art done in big cities versus small towns and rural? There's another chapter for a book. Where to live if you are....

It was fun--did tourist stuff as you can see. Got my picture taken with an Elvis. My niece's wedding on the beach was very nice. But glad to be home. I feel more boxed in by traditional thinking in the east--at least the places I get to. Gets tiring. I wanted to hug an evergreen when I came home.
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Old 06-26-2007, 09:11 AM
 
1,569 posts, read 3,087,395 times
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Default Mexico artist open studio

Quote:
Originally Posted by letsgosee View Post
Now I have a tip for checking out an art town. Last Saturday I went to an artist's well publicized afternoon of open studio. She's a good artist, a charming outgoing person, and everything is extremely underpriced. Her work is "accessible". Eight people showed up and I was one of two artists. So it is clear that there is not much interest in art and that the artists who live here don't demonstrate an attitude of support for other artists who are sticking their neck out by inviting everyone to their studio. Not my idea of "community".
letsgosee
Letsgosee, I enjoy your posts about Mexico. That is a shame more artists and community didn't get to the open studio. I love going to open studios, always inspiring to see what others are doing and now I have a different outlook on how going also supports the artist--never considered that even if I don't buy, someone interested might be a benefit to them. I always feel privileged to glimpse their creative process and the setting they do it in.

Keep posting about your move--I looked up the town. Looks beautiful. If I ever want to retire I might have to move to Mexico. Knowing someone who has moved there makes me think it might be possible. Know any good language schools? The only place I've been is Puerto Penasco--I learned how I don't want to travel. How did you decide to move there? The stories I've heard make me nervous about trying it but I keep coming back to wanting to visit and check it out.

I wish I had more time to do research--will add researching moving to Mexico and what determines a good artist town to my list when I finish school. I wonder how you could get to the info on how well artists tours are attended and what type of artists live in an area? The last might be impossible. I know someone from the WA Arts Commission, I might have to ask him.
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Old 06-27-2007, 12:19 PM
 
7 posts, read 9,292 times
Reputation: 11
Dancingearth,
Thank you! I will stay in touch with this thread. In Chicago the ceramicists have the Lill Street Gallery, which has the studio space, kilns, classes, everything a ceramacist needs. I imagine that's how it's done in other cities. In my old neighborhood a garage had been converted. Other artists teach at schools that have kilns. My experience the one year I lived in Morelia was that art events are well attended and that there is a spirit of collaboration. I was spoiled living in Chicago, where the artists are more supportive of each other than competitive. And there is an anti elitist spirit with artist run exhibitions and quirky events. Too much fun! I organized some of those. My leaving is a long story, but the bottom line was money. Now I have more money but I would rather feel financially secure down here in a large space, than be sweating the expenses every month in a small apt. up there. Not to mention Chicago's wonderful weather!!! But there's a daily flight to Chicago from the airport in Morelia, and just this week I installed a Vonage line and can now talk to US friends all I want, after 7 years! With these, the internet and a digital camera I will be reconnected. My life is changing radically. But having each foot in a different world is never going to be easy.
letsgosee
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Old 07-15-2007, 09:26 PM
 
Location: tucson, az
1 posts, read 1,561 times
Reputation: 10
Dear Letsgosee...In my web perusing, I came across your thread about Mexico...I live in Tucson, AZ and have been researching places for artful communities to relocate to..I've been considering the Austin area, but having traveled to Mexico on numerous occasions, have considered moving there..Cuernevaca was an obvious idea, but you mentioned Morelia!! What a great place. It was some 15+ some years ago I was there, but I got the impression it had a pretty cool cultural base. A restaurant I dined at, Diana Kennedy had taught cooking classes. WOW. I found a tiny mysterious coffee house with a colonial facade. The small circuitous hallway, ended in a huge round uneven stone room with live acoustic music and students. Having grown up in the Boston area, it reminded me of my old Cambridge haunts. The city itself is quite pretty, and there was a great crafts market on Saturdays, on or near the zocalo, with quality work too! So Morelia, definitely made an impression on me! I'd be interested in knowing what's going on there now!? Any other suggestions for other mexican spots for artists? My background is writing, illustration, and painting. I want to set up a studio, but would be interested in classes in other fine arts and Spanish. Cuernevaca sounds like it might be getting too expensive, or overrun with too many "gringos". Is that true? Does anyone out there have experience in Buenos Aires? And, Austinites..are there smaller towns outside Austin that are reasonably priced, but have other creative types there? (Smithville, Bastrop??) I'm a young 40 something woman, and just lookin' for a new home. (It just has to be sunny and warm!)
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Old 07-16-2007, 07:29 AM
 
35 posts, read 95,823 times
Reputation: 31
Buenos Aires -- In 2003 I spent several weeks in BA on business. The economy was just coming out of some sever problems, yet crime was low. The night life was good, there was a area of closed streets, with vendors, shops, coffee houses and music open very late. Huge city but the people were very friendly, tho over caffinated - we'd stop for coffee on the way to the factory, get coffee there, have coffee for break, lunch, break, meeting at end of day with coffee, stop for some on way to hotel, and so on. And they always drank more - which I thought explained the extended nightlife.

All kinds of art everywhere - odd population mix tho, heavily Italian ancestory - only spanish language country I've been in where people say 'caio' at all socio-economic levels I've ever seen; it seemed and looked like europe. I loved it down there, always felt safe in the city.

The son of the factory owner had opened an office in Mexico City, and I meet him every weekend, as he flew home to socialize, as the crime was so terrible in Mexico he was no longer able to go out at night there - he was 25 and wanted to party some of course. He had some fairly terrible stories of police corruption in Mexico City, so talking to him gave me insight into how young people in BA thought - I'd been to Mexico City several times myself so had a different perseptive on the place, coming from Chicago, were aldermen often serve both their terms at the same time, the one in prison and the one on the city council!

Short story it convinced me that corruption and crime was truely low in BA; super friendly people, wonderful city, just a great culture. Visit there for sure.

BTW, having travelled a lot in Mexico, I gotta say that Mexico City is unique in it's totally screwed up mess - much of the rest of Mexico is quite nice.
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