Monday, April 23, 2012

Reclaimed Art, my exhibit at the Flood Gallery Fine Art Center May 3-28, 2012

Flood Gallery Fine Art Center’s newest exhibit, Reclaimed Art, presenting the work of local mixed media artist, Katie Chen, will be on view through May.  The opening reception will be on Saturday, May 5, 2012, from 6 pm-9 pm. True to the title of the show “Reclaimed Art,” Chen tries to limit her medium to only reclaimed materials—obtaining most of her materials from the local Habitat for Humanity Restore, the curbside, or through donation.  Instead of using toxic paints, solvents, and new canvas materials, the tiny pieces of color and texture she cuts from the pages of these donated magazines become her color palate, and the reclaimed wood board becomes her canvas.  Amazingly, the result ends up looking very similar to an abstract oil painting.  “I’ve had many people ask me what kind of paint I use,” Chen laughs.  “They’re surprised when I tell them that they’re looking at tiny pieces of magazines.”  

A woman with many interests and talents, Chen is also a classically trained singer, and holds a degree in Journalism from Northern Illinois University.  Ultimately, it was while she learned how to design and write for magazines, that she also saw the potential for their pages to be a “green” art medium with the use of scissors.

If you want to go:  Reclaimed Art, works by Katie Chen at the Flood Gallery Fine Art Center, May 3-28, 2012.  Art opening reception on Saturday, May 5, 2012 from 6 pm-9 pm.  Flood Gallery Fine Art Center located in the Phil Mechanic Studios Building at 109 Roberts Street, Asheville.  (828) 254-2166.  For additional information please visit

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Boobalicious Breastfeeding Hat!

I saw a hat like this one online a while back, and decided right then and there that I needed to make one!  I think this will be my trademark gift for all of my many friends who are giving birth this year.  I was excited to find the exact colors in a organic soft cotton yarn at the local yarn shop, and to create my own original pattern to use for all of the babies to come!  This one went to my friend who is expecting a baby boy this July! 

PS.  Hopefully you "get" it.  When the baby wears it when he/she is nursing, it looks like you are exposed, and have a very gigantic boob!  Hilarious!

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Plants, plants, everywhere! (Yum yum yum yum yum)

She's cute, isn't she?  So sweet and innocent, curled up in a little ball...awwww...But don't let her fool you!!!  She's actually truly vicious; with tearing claws, gnashing teeth, a ferocious devouring stomach--you should be very scared!!!

...if you're a plant.  

Yes, folks.  Kitty is a plant killer.  And I've learned the hard way.  I've been brought close to tears when I've gone to check on the little tiny plant-ling that I've been caring for, nursing along--only to find it gone--absolutely and entirely eaten.  And Kitty nearby purring with pleasure.  Plant-lings are her favorite.  And the jade plants; must be a texture thing.  

Anyway, first reacting with sadness and pity ("why me--why do I happen to adopt a plant-eater-cat?!?!?!"), I changed my approach and turned it into a project.  To try and find the answer to the question:  how to keep Kitty from eating my plants.  Extra challenge:  unlike dogs (the animal I'm more accustomed to), kitties can jump--high--making the usual solutions like "put it on the shelf" still unusable.  

Here's what I came up with:  A terrarium, and hanging plants in jars!

Any other solutions out there?  Please and thank you!!

Saturday, April 7, 2012

For the Meow: Catnip filled mouse!

This project was inspired by some mice created by the ladies at Foundry in Asheville, NC.  I wish you could see the originals (maybe they've posted them on their website?)--they're beautiful!  Handcrafted out of fabric samples, they actually look like cute little mice (ears and all!).  As for me, I didn't have nearly the patience enough to even challenge my sewing skills (3D sewing is not my forte), so I based my little mouse on--well, a mouse that you might use with a computer.  It's hip to be square, right?

Made of reclaimed fabric, and filled with organic catnip.  $5 plus shipping.

Friday, April 6, 2012

Piece in progress...


This is the biggest one yet.  I'm preparing for my show in May at the Flood Gallery in Asheville, NC.  My first personal show ever!  Excited to be able to show all of my large pieces!  Can't wait.  This one is almost done, needs its final layers of varnish before it is completely finished, and as you can tell by the photos, its size makes it difficult to take nice photos of it...hopefully you still get the idea of it, though!