Wednesday, September 19, 2012
Some pictures from the opening in Milan. I love how everything was installed, they did such a great job. Thank you Patricia and KAPPAO!
My embroidery work on the wall and the carved crayons and pencils on pedestals. KAPPAO made the wooden pedestals and the gallery had the glass(?) covers made. I can't express enough how wonderful it's been working with Patricia and the gallery. They've done so much!
The people looking.
Another view of the gallery. My work on the floor and KAPPAO's work on the wall.
Here is a view of all of my pieces in the show. If you'd like to see them individually you can follow this link:
Tuesday, September 18, 2012
Orca (#102) 2012
Carved carpenter’s pencil
3 7/8"H x 5/8"W x 1/4"D
My show in Milan at Galleria Patricia Armocida just opened today! Here are a few more pieces that will be in the show. I wish I could have been there for the opening, but from what I hear it was a packed opening! This is also the first time I will have prints available for sale at the gallery. 100 prints are available, 50 prints of each "The Last Elephant" and "The Raven and The Sun". This is a very limited run, but hopefully we'll be able to offer more prints of other artworks in the future.
Full Sail (#100) 2012
Carved carpenter’s pencil
3 9/16"h x 5/8"w x ¼"
My interview with Gaia Segattini on Vendetta Uncinette! It's in Italian, but Google does a decent job of translating. Thank you Gaia :)
The gallery printed this uber cool invite! It's a little booklet that's sewn together. I believe the text might be an amalgam of my handwriting and KAPPAO's handwriting? I recognize some of the lettering, but not all of it. Patricia really put a lot of time and effort into this! Bravo, this is such a cool card!
Delicacy of Tiny Things invite card interior.
My image on the left and KAPPAO's image on the right. Both have embossed detail! This is totally going the extra mile.
Embossed elephant on invite.
Octopus (#108) 2012
3 3/8”h x 5/16”w x 5/16”d
Carved Crayola crayon
Another crayon piece in the Milan show.
Detail of Octopus.
My first try at taking a 360 video of my crayons. Sorry for the shakiness folks, this is quite crude! I need to make a rotating stand and get a tripod for my camera. I'd like to do a video for all of my carved work. The photos are great, but I feel you can miss a lot detail.
Sunday, September 16, 2012
I met with some friends for brunch on my last day. One of the best things about collecting Blythe dolls is getting to meet other collectors when you travel! Thank you Siri, Katie, Hsin, Micheal and George for arranging the meet! We'd like to give a big thanks to Clayton & Jeff as well for taking us out to dinner and showing us around town. It's a pity to forgot to take pictures with you guys!!!
We mostly hung out with friends and did some shopping on our last day. We hit Saks, Kinokuniya, Uniqlo and a Japanese sweets shop, as well as revisited some favorite eats and rode the subway for one last time. It was hard to leave this amazing city, hopefully we've taken home a bit of NY in our outlook.
Block party/rummage sale.
It was fun seeing what NY junk was all about. I feel pretty good about the Fremont Sunday Market now. We do well in comparison. ;) If anyone out there is visiting Seattle I would recommend going to this weekly market along with Pike Place Market. I should really do a "must see" post for Seattle visitors.
I found this AMAZING wagashi shop in Midtown just as we were leaving town. This is a must go if you like Japanese sweets. Being in here made me want to go back to Japan so badly! Everything is so lovely and delicious! We bought a few things to take back with us. They will also ship via their online store.
Seasonal and year round treats.
These are packed so well I didn't want to eat them!
We had to get this lovely White Peach jelly bundle. It's an entire peach that's been poached and set in jelly. It was fantastic and so refreshing, I kept the packaging of course.
Kinokuniya doesn't allow photography... I found out as I took this shot! These were really cute hankies and I should have bought one, but alas I didn't. I don't have the company's info either, it was in a gift shop on the 2nd floor.
I'm very lucky we have 2 Kinokuniya in town, one in Seattle and the other in Bellevue. They're like the Barnes and Noble of Japan. They have a great art and crafts section as well as a large selection of manga.
NYC was fantastic, I can't wait to come back and I'm sad I have to leave. It's incredibly motivational to be around so much energy all week long. I think the NY paste has inspired us to push ourselves a little harder and pack a little more newness into our everyday lives. Thank you NYC, Saks & Crayola, we'll be back!
Thursday, September 13, 2012
Being a tourist was the focus today with the "work" part of my trip behind me. My husband and I hit 4 museums, 3 tourist highlights and several favorite shops in NYC all in one day. We bought a one day New York Pass, if we had more time we would have bought a 2 or 3 day pass. The one day pass is $80 and the 2 day pass is $130, less if you buy online ahead of time. You really have to be disciplined at getting to as many of the locations as possible to get your money's worth. Having the pass also gets you to go to more places. I tend to be a lazy tourist, I like to stop by a district or neighborhood and just wander. I seldom have an itinerary so having this pass gave me a game plan. It's also comparable to the City Pass, but has more museums and gardens and sites associated with it. I also recommend getting the 7 day unlimited MetroCard if you're staying close to a week in NYC. This card will work for both bus and subway and you can use it as many times as you like. Each ride on the subway is $2.25 and there's no transfer ticket. So every time you get on and off it's $2.25, that can add up fast.
Our first stop was the Guggenheim. It was the furthest north, we wanted to start there and work our way down. They were cleaning the exterior that day so we got to see a mid-air rope dance with the cleaners. I really enjoyed seeing Rineke Dijkstra's retrospective. A big thanks to some French ladies to took this pic for us!
Cleaning the Guggenheim.
We also hit the Neue Gallerie, but they were closed to install an upcoming exhibit? I was SO BUMMED!!! Many of my favorite artists are in there. I wanted to make a run for the elevator, but NYC has some of the biggest and toughest (looking) doormen! The doorman was really nice at the Neue, I tried to talk my way in, but no luck. I'll just have to come back next time.
Our next stop was the Metropolitan Museum of Art. HOLY WOW this place is big. I had no idea how huge it is and how much work was in there! We spent more than 3 hours and barely made a scratch. I could see visiting NYC just to see the Met.
The lobby at the Met
One of my favorite pieces in the Greco-Roman wing.
Roman, about A.D. 220-230
Dionysos on a panther with this attendants. The Four Seasons as winged youths, Tellus (the earth) and Oceanus (a river), reclining.
Probably found in Rome.
Getting to see some Fabergé work up close was also a treat. Being a carver of tiny things I'm totally in awe!
More pictures of the Met
We took a quick lunch break after the Met and made our way to the Whitney only to be surprised with a HUGE line! I don't know what was going on that day, everyone was in line to see Yayoi Kusama's work. We debated whether or not to spend our precious hours standing in line. We had bought a pass already, but still had to wait... we stayed and finally got in. They really need a better ticketing system, it was very inefficient.
We were museum-ed out after the Whitney and decided to wander through the Upper East Side. We popped into this TINY Chrome Hearts store and window shopped. I like some of their stuff, my husband is a bigger fan.
We made a visit to the Ladurée shop next door and purchased some sweets for later. ;)
By now our feet have melted off our body and everything is sore from 5-6 straight hours of walking. We stopped back in the hotel to freshen up and lay down for an hour. We ate some macarons from Ladurée's and sipped on a giant cup of coffee from Starbucks. I normally don't drink Starbucks when I'm in Seattle, there are too many great coffee shops here, but when traveling they're consistent and dependable! We Seattlites will curl up and die if we don't have coffee in our veins. LOL
OK! The evening's sites include: Grand Central Station, Top of the Rock @ 30Rock and Times Square. Can you tell I'm trying to pack everything in? My poor husband got dragged along, he calls it "The Bataan Death March".
We took the subway to Grand Central, the sun was setting and I was losing light fast. I didn't get a lot of good pics of Grand Central, but it was cool to be there at rush hour. I tried not to get in people's way, but it's nearly impossible. The crowd dynamics in NYC is much different than in Tokyo. I would say Tokyo is much denser, but no one ever bumps into you. It's pretty incredible how the Japanese can navigate a crowded subway. I loved seeing the diversity in NYC though, there are so may distinctively different people and cultures. I'm sure it's a cause for abrasion at times, but the variety you get to live within is well worth it.
It was pitch dark by the time we made it to Top of the Rock. I didn't have a tripod with me and my hands are shaky. This is a shot of Times Square from Top of the Rock. It's that bright spot in the dark. The city lights are incredible from up here. We decided to make our way to Times Square from here.
You knew where to go by the volume of light emitted! What a stunning sight and total visual overload. We were lucky to be there when a few streets were closed. I guess they had a parade earlier in the day? We got to wander through the streets without worries.
It was fun to walk through, I think night time is when Times Square really shines.
And that's it for our 4th Day in NYC!
Wednesday, September 12, 2012
Getting ready for the festivities at the Rockefeller Center.
Me in front of the doors at Saks Fifth Avenue.
Walking to Saks the morning of the event.
Me on the 4th floor of Saks 5th Ave. I was scheduled to do some carving just a few feet away later that night.
4th floor atrium
Setting for the night.
The set up was a little crazy and we started about 15 minutes late. Everyone was very friendly and helpful.
The carving begins!
It was cool getting to talk to everyone. They originally had set up some ropes around my table, but I wanted people to be able to come right up and see what I was doing. I would have felt funny being roped off the whole night. :P
I was carving for about 3 hours, but didn't even get close to done on that crayon. I spent a lot of time talking with people. It was also hard to concentrate with everything going on. I had a lot of fun though, I hope everyone who attended had fun too.
The people, a very well dressed crowd.
A friend and I decided to joust with our giant crayons during the breakdown. It was an amazing night. A BIG thanks to everyone who came out!
Saturday, September 8, 2012
Remember that scene from Raiders of the Lost Ark?
We came to NY with a fairly loose itinerary. I've never been to NY before had no idea what to expect. I just mapped out a couple of "must see" tourist attractions and thought I'd go from there. Being a fiber-phile the Garment District is like holy mecca. I had to come and pay my respects first and "PAY" I did! The credit card is going to be so sore when I get home.
Mood Fabrics has to be the highlight of my venture through the Garment District. They have a huge selection of fabric and staff was very friendly. I've seen the store for so many years on Project Runway I wanted to experience it in person. You have to take a moment to gather yourself when entering this place, it's a visual KAPOW!
Rows of cottons.
High quality light weight cottons are hard to come by. I think I bought enough to sustain me for a few years!
Not just wall to wall, but floor to ceiling too!
Friendly, knowledgeable service!
Hassan and I were like two peas in a pod. He was so awesome and knowledgeable when it came to fabrics. Many of the folks who work and shop at mood are talented creatives as well. Thank you for all your help!
And last, but certainly not least, I got to meet Swatch the Mood store dog. He is such an awesome hunky chunk of a dog! He does walk around like he owns the place, but he's very friendly and will come around for a back scratching. Swatch wasn't feeling photogenic that day. :P
Can you tell I didn't want to leave. I was so exhausted but so happy at the same time! Mood will be my first stop every time I'm in NYC!
The corridors of the Garment District. I love high density cities. It's incredible to see walls of windows separated by a thin sliver of sky.
The Tinsel Trading Company, a shop I really love in the Garment District.
This window display pulled me in from across the street. I also noticed they had a lot of cool stuff that you can dig through. I like shops that are a mix of old and new... I don't want an overly sanitized look. I like dust (not literal dust) and age, I want to explore when I shop.
They have a massive selection of new and vintage millinery flowers.
I love the old cabinets and how they've displayed everything. The staff is very nice as well!
I also loved York Beads. They have a horrible looking website and the store is not huge, but you can tell they've focused on stocking quality vs. quantity. I guess they mostly do wholesale. The staff was a curt at first but warmed up after thee realized I was going to buy something. I totally understand having been in retail before. It's worth your while to stop in, they're just a few blocks from Mood.