Tuesday, September 28, 2010


It's all around me. Be it artists, athletes, or animal rescuers-I have been blessed with meeting incredibly inspiring people. I admire how intentionally they choose to live; to act on the big ideas they have and be willing to be inconvenienced. It is so beautiful to see someone chose that over comfortability.

For instance, last night at East Nasty- the most awesome running club EVER- our usual route was postponed in favor of the Gumpathon. The Gumpathon is this: 6 men running across the country (3530 miles) for eight weeks, raising money for injures servicemen and women. Wow. It was an honor to support them as a group and join them for a tiny portion of their epic run.

Crossing the pedestrian bridge over the Cumberland river, we ran into downtown Nashville together.

Cadillac Ranch on Broadway hosted a fundraising concert for the Gumpathoners. At this point they are over 1000 miles into their journey from New York to Santa Monica. They are crossing 16 states, which will cover 10 mountain ranges and 3 deserts. What a choice to make. What a courageous heart you would need.

Speaking of brave people with big hearts, East C.A.N., works tirelessly to rescue, vet, foster, and adopt abandoned animals into loving homes. Do you love dogs, but don't have time or space to have one of your own? Contact these guys to take a pup to the park or for a walk; even just a little help goes a long way to support what these dedicated people are doing. Do you want to adopt a dog? Come meet a canine buddy every Wednesday at 6:00pm at 11th and Holly in east Nashville before the run. Also, see their webpage.

Since I biked to East Nasty last night, I didn't have one of my dogs with me. Don't tell Seamus and Aka, but I met the CUTEST little red pit named Penny and I took her with me for the run. I have another favorite, too; his name is Shorty. If I had any more money, space, or time, Shorty would be coming home with me!

SO, all that to say last night, this past Sunday morning, everyday really, I 'm having an admirationfest (it's a new word) for the people I meet who choose to accept challenges and struggle to aid others; they make our world a beautiful place.

Last but not least, I'm inspired by artists like Eric, who is biking cross country for a year, and drawing the entire adventure. It's not to make or raise money, it's simply to see. To put himself out of his social, economic, and geographical bubble and really see what other people living then, and as artists do, communicate it through their work.

Time for me to get out there!

2nd Annual SoundCrawl

Did the inaugural event last year leave you wanting more? Have you heard about it, and wondered it is? Check out the "ABOUT" page from the official SoundCrawl website.

I'm looking forward to being serenaded this Saturday evening with avant garde goodness brought about by talented friend and artist, Aaron Hoke Doenges. You won't want to miss this!

ABOUT: SoundCrawl

Picture a Saturday night in Nashville when all the galleries are open. Beautiful people, drinks in hand, drift from one gallery to another to experience the best the city has to offer in visual art.

Now imagine that at various points along the way something new has been added, an opportunity to experience a new kind of art, art that you HEAR....sound art.

So in between the experience of the visual arts, artists and guests alike gather to listen to....a rhythmic beat of water drops....or a dizzying immersion of the sound of coins moving through space...synthetic audio wrapping around, tickling the ear drums of the city.

After a successful inaugural event last year, SoundCrawl:Nashville is returning this fall for a second sonic immersion of Music City. During the downtown ArtCrawl on October 2nd, from 6-9pm, Nashville will once again dive into the world of experimental audio with new sound art compositions from around the world. Compositions that immerse. Compositions that resonate. Compositions that explore.

about the ArtCrawl: (from www.artatthearcade.com):Every first Saturday of the month, the historic Arcade in downtown Nashville comes to life with over one thousand visitors. Multiple galleries open their doors to avid art lovers as well as anyone else that is just curious to see what the Gallery Crawl is all about. Art at the Arcade is a collective organization that hosts an assortment of contemporary artists from throughout the world to Nashville.

what is SoundArt: Between 1930 and 1965, composer Edgard Varèse gave a series of lectures that have since been collected and titled “The Liberation of Sound.” In these lectures, Varese was trying to understand – and explain – his own approach to sonic expression. He, along with Pierre Schaeffer and others, began to explore the organization of sonic materials – sounds from the ambient world, evolving electronic technology, and the traditional instruments used for centuries– in any and every combination into cohesive works of audio art on phonograph (and then tape, and now computer).

The only definition that seemed to fit his music was simply: “organized sound.”

This definition has been given several labels through the years: musique concrète (in the French, Varèse and Schaeffer’s native tongue), electroacoustic music, sound collage, sound music, sound art, etc., etc. Some of these labels focus on very specific types of audio used. Some do not. Each one, however, is all encompassing of sound. Any sound. That has been organized in some way.

It’s a pretty broad definition.

The cultural and mechanical forces that influenced Varèse and Schaeffer have only become more powerful in the intervening years. With the advent of the computer and audio software, the production possibilities of sound organization – something that this town knows a bit about - seem endless. This power has brought with it technological ubiquity – computers are everywhere – and with ubiquity has come the commonplace, and with the commonplace comes the ability to focus not only on the medium (the technology used) but also on the expression (the art of the sounds used). And has changed the art of sound as we know it.

So what is sound art?

Sound \'saund\: the sensation perceived by the sense of hearing

Art \'ärt\: the conscious use of skill and creative imagination especially in the production of aesthetic objects

Sound Art \'saund ' ärt\: The conscious use of skill and creative imagination in producing aesthetic sensations perceived by the sense of hearing.

Sound. Collage. Expression. Audio. Organization. Consciousness. Creativity. Music. Art.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Hanging Hopes Out On a Line

image by Banksy

I have been struggling alot lately to keep focused- so many hopes and plans that sometimes I can't keep up with them. I want so much in life. I don't understand when people say they are bored.
Incidentally, lately I've found myself more depressed than I have been in many, many months and frustrated with the energy it drains from me. What a frustrating struggle, and I know I am not alone in it. I don't want to have a pity party, but I feel betrayed by myself. Why does my body do this to me? Or is it my mind? Is there a difference? The past couple weeks were such a string of high and lows. I want to let it go. I want my mind moving in a new direction.

Consuming Catastrophe part 2

In thinking about my last post about the recent show, Consuming Catastrophe, I realized there should be more pictures. So here they are; a quick photo journey.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Consuming Catastrophe

I really enjoyed this past month's event in Downtown Presbyterian at Art Crawl; unfortunately it was up one night only. Read the press release below to get the gist of it:

Press Release:
Downtown Presbyterian Children’s Summer Arts Program

If popular caricature is at all correct and church is the place where young people are
taken to learn to hate and fear their own bodies, Downtown Presbyterian Church is going
against the grain. Led by children’s education director, Sarah Dark and with the help of
area artists J. Todd Greene, Richard Feaster, David Carlson, Mandy Rogers-Horton, and
DPC’s own Beth Gilmore, Jake Larson, and Aaron Doenges, the children of the church
are working to transform the downstairs chapel into an installation of the human body.
The show’s title? Consuming Catastrophe: The Comedy of the Heart; A Play in Ate
Guided by the conviction that a child’s relationship with God is healthily
underway long before adults start arming them with readymade answers, Dark
customarily begins their Sunday morning classes together with a story, followed by
questions. Take Jesus’ parable of the mustard seed, for instance. “The smallest of all
seeds becomes a tree so great that many birds can make their home in it,” Dark explains.”
I asked the children, ‘How is the kingdom of heaven like a mustard seed?’” What did they
come up with?
It is growing.
It is a home for us.
It is something small that is becoming great.
“I wondered aloud how the seed knew what to grow into.”

It is very powerful.
It is what it was made for.
“I asked where the children find this kind of power.”
In the trees around us.
In the seasons changing.
In our bodies.
It was the phrase, “In our bodies” that connected Todd Greene’s vision of a
human body machine with this year’s Summer Art’s Program director Dave Carlson’s
hope for a kinetic installation. Dark explains: “After spending a few weeks on what
art might be for and how specific artists create art that is interactive and moving, it
was time to put all of our ideas together.” Reporting back to the children, she had an
announcement: “Kids, we’re going to turn the chapel into a human body that you can
walk through. Oh, and you are the mustard seeds.”
It’s Dark’s hope that the children’s creation will serve as a visual aid, for young
and old alike, in better discerning God’s redeeming work not as something that happens
in spite of our bodies but within and among them and for better imagining the breadth
and outlandish scope of God’s love. She envisions the installation as “an interactive
space that will take us deeper into the poetry of this weirdly elusive but ever-expanding
kingdom...Participants will cross the threshold of the mouth and enter a bioactive
landscape, journeying through the esophagus of darkness, beneath the soul of the
stomach, into the forest of intestines, accompanied by the music of the heart, exiting
into the quiet of a blossoming tree so inclusive that life lives forever in it.” Ideally, this
culminating event of DPC’s summer arts program will somehow, in Dark’s phrase, “put
skin and bones on the mystery of the kingdom of God.”
The show opens on September 4th in DPC’s chapel at 6:00. Food and drink will be
available as a part of the Artluck’s 1st Saturday Art Crawl.

Monday, September 6, 2010

Winds of Change or I'm in Denial

Pretty, luscious blooms of summer; I don't want to see them wither and fade. I love my little plants; we have quite a lot in common. We lie dormant, hibernating through the dark, cold Winter. We start inching our way out again in the Spring, refreshed by the promise of rain and warmth. We burst into bloom in the summer: fueled by the energy of the sun all types of fruits, vegetables, and bold blossoms arrive. We feel the cool wind of Fall creep in, and begin to withdraw. Withering and fading, we will prepare for Winter and complete the cycle once again.
Apparently, I AM a plant. This so accurately describes what I feel right now. I am a little embarassed to admit how severly this impacts me. I feel frustratingly out of control at this time of year. I am still trying to cling to the last days of Summer, not wanting to let go. Summer Sarah is adventurous, fearless, and energtic. I want that to be me year round, but the fact is I am affected by the seasons ( S.A.D. I suppose) and no matter what I say, do, or think, I will not feel the same in the Winter. Thus, Fall gets the short end of the stick- it's arrival triggers me to panic every year at this time. Every freaking year. Its frustrating. I'm manic- swinging wildly between desperately not wanting to let go of Summer, and alternately mourning the loss of it.
Once we are completely IN Fall, I will enjoy it. It's just the transition that kills me. Seeing the beginning of the dying season. The trees, the plants, the grass- dying. So apparently I am a plant or a closet hippie. I feel intense connection to nature.
What I am reminding myself now though, is that death is a necessary part of new life, new seeds, new growth. This past weekend's art crawl had an installation that really impacted me....more on that in the next post!

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

These Are the Perfect Days

For the past couple weeks when I've thought about blogging, I felt I didn't know where to start because so much is going on, and then I 'd get swept up in the "goings on", and next thing you know another week has gone by.

The weather has been stunningly wonderful the past week or so. Still summery, but no more over 100 degree temps. These are the perfect days. Still a couple hours of light after the workday. River and lake water still mild enough to plunge into. Still able to wear my beloved sundresses. Most of all, I am still bursting with energy. Apparently I have a direct connection to the sun, one which channels energy to me like a powerline- fuel for Summer Sarah.
Summer Sarah can get up early, bike to work, work, bike to East Nasty, run with friends, hang out, then bike home. On a day off, Summer Sarah can run early in the morning, go on a waterfall adventure, swim and cliff jump the afternoon away, then spend time in the studio. I love how Summer Sarah is brimming with happiness and ready to steal every moment of the day and make it count. However, seasons change and so do I. I don't know if it's necessarily for better or worse, but I do know it is a great source of anxiety for me. I am more "hibernate-ish" in the winter. Not so sure of myself. Less extroverted. Less adventurous. That is what I know to be the natural way of things.

All that to say, here I am, at the changing of seasons knowing I too will change with the days. It seems so many people love Fall. I should love Fall. It will be lovely hiking and running weather. I should be OK with it, but instead I struggle. Every single year, at this point, I panic at the feeling of the warm summery sun fading away.

It seems biologically that I will always be like this, but I would like to adapt to the changes better. I don't want to feel such heavy dread at the end of August. I don't want to lose sight of the beauty of autumn, just because it brings us one step closer to winter. Fall lovers out there- help me! Show me your ways! I'm ready. *Actually,I'm not quite ready, give me another couple weeks:)*