Mycelium theatrics

Often I think. The land is telling me something. I had once been obsessed with a woman’s occupation of reading plants movements- meaning where they move themselves on the land and where they replant themselves.

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In practice, the idea of living inside a field of poison ivy seems horrendous, and yet. What I am realizing is, I don’t know what horrendous is. Theoretically plants moved to where they wanted, where they’re needed, where they’re fed. As a culture we have often planted things where we wanted, only to reak havoc on the environment.

And so.

In my travels I find myself in a wee cabin on a wee pond in the peculiar state of New Hampshire.

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The rains have been torrential. The village has 7 bodies of water and some have been closed due to the rains. So who should arrive in this late summer days, when internal thoughts blossom and brew? The deliciously mysterious world of the mushroom.

Perhaps my disregard for the out house has brought me face to face with more then your average amount of mycelium theatrics or perhaps it’s my desire to walk barefoot and fearing hallucinations via my toes.

Being mushroom conscious takes the surreal to a new level. The first days, I watched, and within hours shapes morphed.

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Change is ramped.

If I think through the cycle of attention, in parallel to my own psychosis- I have gone from fear to curiosity to godly respect. And perhaps back to fate.

Hunting mushrooms takes little effort with my iPhone and even less time then boiling an egg in these here parts to collect dozens.

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Several years ago I listened obsessively to Mycophilia: Revelations from the Weird World of Mushrooms. By Eugenia Bone

Besides giving me a healthy respect for their peculiar capabilities. The book reinforced how little I could possible know.

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Certainly hearing that mushrooms are more similar to animals then they are to plants gives good reason to wonder about their consciousness and motives.

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The variety and reasoning for making themselves known when so much of their work is underground. They are the interstitial communicators of the earthly world. Using micro versions to chatter between trees and keeping the gossips happy.

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So here in these August days I am watching as heads newly push through leaf layers. Carrying the weight of other’s decomposition on their head.

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The game of seeing new ones, is often confused with seeing a reincarnation of the same body. And not stepping on poisonous ones is not helped by the books. The books we gathered to understand what we are looking at only reveals the end of the world from where I am squatting to release my self. 

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There is comedy. Sweet rocks that bulge through the sand to become mushrooms.

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There is color distort with the glistening grey, vibrant yellow and pulsing reds.

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All of which, seem to not translate into the camera, seemingly to dull as they sense they are being captured.

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Arching stems, willowing stems scattered through, stems that are larger then their heads. Mushrooms breeding mushrooms from their cap. Mushrooms curling their lips, showing their underskirts, revealing their tendrils. All this, and oh yes more.

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But I wonder. Are they each their own kingdom or are they each individual members of a greater army?

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What is it that they want. Desire. Or need. What is the place of poison in the order of things? How is it that the most solid form can reform into a spherical bloom of webs and then slim with in hours.

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We are all many things. I am slime. I am a blossoming orb. I am poison. I am food. I am circling you. I am still thinking while you might think I’m sleeping. I am changing my colors. I am moist and yet indigestible. I am doing work, you can’t imagine, because it is not yours. I am my own kind. I am not known to you even if you can see me. I follow different rules. I have many lives. When you can not see me I am still here. I am one of many. I am many. I am of the earth.

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The after math.

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What more could I ask for then a hook already placed on a rope in a tree. The prop captured the two edges- The beginning and the end.  The tree’s extension set the stage to watch the in between.

And this, that is inanimate, allowed for my continued voyeurism.

The photograph’s composition considered the bound body. The fabric drew lines for me to consider. Seducing me within an open field, clear light, changing elevation, and a punctuated shadow. From knots, like bound hands, the fabric extended, twisted and breathed, swirled and lifted, stagnated and pulsed. Hope and resistance came and went, opening the door for the other.

What is this thing that I’m doing?

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Each day brings a different vision. Wrapping my dearest, so that they can only reflect me. Pushing the disintegrating surface of old fabric against the mercurial reflection of new fabric- the age old battle of the wills. Using surfaces of all kinds to rest upon, assimilate or insult. Pulling me forward, in full sail, my grip pokes holes and stretch marks ripple across as scars from battle. I am turned on again.

And yet.

The process, side notes, love notes, visual vernacular of where I’m going. The in between forever acts as a vehicle to sustain the work. But today. The bounds hands, the noosed figure in the tree, the ends and the beginnings. It is these that have caught me, and hold me. Until. 

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Week one. ANNEX ARTS, Castine, Maine

Of course it’s Maine. More things from my past have come up in the last week than I can even count. So I walk. I take pictures. My past washes over me. Past me. Behind me. My growth, my places, my scars and my glory. And I’ve kept to the path. By this, I mean the path that walks through the forest that only can be seen with your skin. 

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Meditations on Adorations: process drawings of a crush

Through out my projects I have always traveled with wads of drawing paper or note cards in my bag. Shoved into zip lock bags, I have stacks of imagery around my studio dating back from over a decade ago. And, if I were to unpack those boxes, you know the ones that never get unpacked? They hold papers from throughout my life: wads of Dante’s dogs of hell, ducks, self-portraits, visions out the window from trains, planes, or cars. Processing that which surrounds or the things I saw hours or days or years before. Details parsed out have become side notes, marked with prose and often, even a date.

A moment in between, the far and near together, or just to draw the view... while sitting in traffic, on a bridge in Maine, in a perfect place on a perfect day in the perfect weather in an imperfect situation. Adoration exists.

This show is a kismet celebration of curiosity, and process. Last year when Warren Etheredge and Nancy Dragun founders of the Walla Walla Movie Crush was initiated, they asked for a trophy to celebrate the hard work of their film short directors. A year later, this show is hung, and the award is in process.

When I finally understood crush meant infatuation, and not smooshing grapes in a barrel between your toes, or pulverizing someone’s hopes and dreams... I floated. Thinking about the sweet investigations that the film shorts unfold, I have relooked at my wads, my stacks through the years. The side notes, reconsidered are love notes. Adoration with my surroundings.  A romance with life. Little crushes on a page no bigger then my hand.

So here’s the thing, I have a hell of a time doing that which I don’t like. And when Warren Etheredge asked for a trophy, I kinda grimaced. Truth.

I sat with it, and suggested that perhaps he and Nancy consider the medallion. Worn around the neck or as a pin, it could be etched in classical detail by my hand of rough and raw. There was this pause, and Warren explained, he has traditionally inducted his film makers into The Short Order. A Knighthood! Kismet!

Did I mention Warren takes notes on little papers, too? Notes placed in a stack, placed in his pocket, with organization of his own kind? Yeah, I grinned, too.

I have been experimenting with plaster for years and this medallion project was a great excuse to start delving into a new bronze etching project. Yes. These are all a part of the million steps I take before I get to where I am going.  Plus, amongst the many crush worthy topics, there are dreamy references to my work with Mylar.

Another topic that holds varied visual reference, as if it were one of Warren’s film short segment topics, is the visual representation of Mylar.  Pain and survival. Reflector and container . Adventure and disaster. Ripening and stagnant. And the pursuit of silver as the perfect color continues, or in this case Pallidum.

All this, I am dowsing amongst the surreal and the adorations, the side glances, and the in between. This work is made with all I have ever been all at once. And this, ladies and gentle humans, makes a very different picture.

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Walking to Witherle Woods: day two of the Annex Art residency

I walk. As many do.

Here in Maine I have come to find that which I already know- the knots, and roots underfoot, the smell of the wet eart, the dry pines. And yet, I am surrounded by the sense that this is a land I do not know. This is not my earth. This is not my peninsula. Even still, I am thankful. I am here. Smells cross my path and I shutter with first kisses and hot days when I did not want to take another step. 

I have returned to the land of dreams.  

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the edges extend to the fields beyond the sea

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seeking, hello.

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Caged, ferocious.

And then. It was monday.

Both shows are up, Zeitgeist in Pioneer Square, Seattle till the end of first week in June 2018, and Foundry Vineyards till the end of July 2018.

How do I explain the stake in the ground that each body of world holds within its self. 

The power of being alone while maintaining all of my being.

The power of creating my very own magical realism.

What more could I want, but to keep on going! Try and catch me if you can. I would love to talk about these projects and how they are fed by the surreal work I am building for Woodward Canyon. Oh yeah, did I tell you? I am their girl. 

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I am going, are you coming?

Incidentally, I am working on array of wonderful projects 

    that have a had 

crossover kismet love affair, 

    and its a long time coming.

Willingness, between projects, is what brings form to the dreams. Don’t you think? 

In, “A field guide to getting lost” by Rebecca Solnit. 

I’ve been plunging into the verbal representation of: 

the in-between. 

Finding sentences that make me reach for the pencil 

that has fallen off the night table, 

and I’m rooting around with just my hand- 

fearing to look away from the antidote. 

    Because, in the Blue of Distance part 1, she says 

                            things like 

    “in which the near and far fold into each other.” 

Am I am thinking… oh yeah. 

    This is where I’m going. 

Dowsing for the surreal. Giving sensation formal. Orchestrating the polyphonic self. When the subcutaneous sensation occurs, I know I have shown up. 

By being fully present, and documenting where that is. 

From each part of my body, 

    as a mother, 

        an artist, 

            a wife, 

                and an educator, all five. 

Hearing, seeing, smelling, touching and sensing. All five. 

Without my emotions dictating me, I am left with 

    all I have ever been all at once. 

And this, ladies and gentle humans makes a very different picture.

 

I am going. Are you coming?

Yesterday, I went public with my new work with this image. There is nothing like a shot in the arm from social media to tell you if something is eye catching or not.  My hand will be along side Kim Nemeth's latest weavings at Foundry Vineyards, May 4th to July 31. 2018. You coming?

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Only. There. Then.

Photographs are a force of all my senses. When successful, the images are every part of myself, present from every period of my life.

Control, and dance and life and death, and real.

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And only there then.

finding the unknown in every moment

Even coffee couldn’t help this morning, while children slept and the husband continued to rage war on the art world. I sat with the thought that any moment is still unknown. I find my self thinking so blankly. So very blankly. 

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7:26 am

In one moment it is different. And “the it” changes again. And again, and again. 

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8:29 am

 

 

The truth of now

I would say the website is due for an overhaul. Short of that. I have reopened the link to my photographs. There is a great deal to be seen. With the coming year I will be continuing my work in this vein, with a Photo show slated for 2019. Follow my eyes. 

For the day.

True enough. The forests of Walden, an eccentric home life, and the traditions of large format photography conspired.   With motherhood still leaving the gifts of used tissues and multitasking lists in her pockets, Augusta returned to mark making and photography. Her work is influenced by walking, and watching plants interact like her children, lover, friends, and foes.  Augusta constructs art to redefine spaces, reflecting where she has been and where she wants to be. 

Art Squared, (or why I want to punch people buying art from box stores.)

For the last five years, I have donated an idea and used summer hours. I work through 10 six by six squares for Art Walla's fundraiser ArtSquared. Selling about 6 to 9 each year, this feat always shows me what worked and did not, in a furiously fast experience, and without much discussion. I do it for the greater good. Hell, I assume we all do. 

It gives an opportunity for the community to buy and live with art. For $36.00 the pieces are really small, and for someone like myself, they look like sticky notes placed on my walls. This is not super attractive, and yet it reminds me that: oh yes- I like this artist. I need to follow their thoughts, and when given a chance, buy a larger more thought out work. 

For now, this will do, until then. 

So why the violence?

Sexy tree creatures and fear, again.

The mullen was in awe of the mad sexy beast of a tree. Me too.

Sexy tree creatures

So I have continued the photography at full force, and what seems to be the linking sensation is - song. Or rather the fear that induces song. The shock to the system has really gotten my childhood repertoire up to the forefront of my mind. "Just a boy and a girl in a little canoe..." shields be from cougars. Whistling random Mozart tunes keeps the rattle snakes away. I only wish the made up opera would make the star thistle pull itself up and be gone.