Wednesday, 27 April 2016

Of Note: Truitt, Manley, and Masko

Here's what tickles my fancy this week:

1. Anne Truitt, Working documentary by Jem Cohen. It was extra on the DVD for his film Museum Hours and it is only 13 minutes long, so I watched it twice. Truitt's descriptions of colour and her work are what make the documentary. The documentary was made in two parts: an interview in black-and-white film with Truitt at Yaddo on November 10, 1999 and a colour film of her Washington, D.C. studio in January 2005, just after her death in 2004. I found the filming to be very frustrating. In the Yaddo interview, Truitt is mixing colour and is describing various colours and their functions of either sick, dead, or lifting colours, BUT Cohen filmed this riveting interview in black-and-white. Also, I really wanted to see footage (in colour) of Truitt's sculptures in gallery and museum settings. The more I read her Daybook: The Journal of an Artist, the more of her work I want to see and learn about. 

2. A Little Sole-Searching? The Story of a Pair of Boots by Claudia Manley, of the blog Proper Tension. It's a well-crafted essay about boots and relationships and it has stayed with me the almost six weeks since I read it. I hope she writes more of these.

3. A Flowering Snowball class, taught by Johanna Masko. Masko is a friendly, patient teacher who explains each step clearly and has developed several hacks and techniques that make piecing curves and installing zippers easy. This week I  made my first stress-free zipper installation. I was apprehensive about the class because I had heard about her rigorous safety stance on rotary cutters. Once you get past that, she's really worth learning from.


Claudia said...

Thanks for the shout-out, Karen. As to Jem Cohen films, I'm not surprised by your disappointment in how it was shot. Cohen is an experimental film maker (having made films about Patti Smith as well as the hardcore band Fugazi and others). I like his aesthetic but could see how it'd be frustrating if it were the specific content you were interested in above the film itself. Don't worry; there will be more pieces like the boot piece a-coming.

Karen said...

Cohen's film Museum Hours was a satisfying work of fiction, and his aesthetic worked. His documentary of Truitt left me wanting more, probably because so little of her life and work has been examined.