What does an artist do when unsold work starts to dominate the studio?
If they were newer encaustic pieces then I might scrape the wax surface back and start again on the wooden panels.
But this work predates all my encaustic explorations. Numerous highly textured canvasses, some bubble-wrapped, stacked under tables, racked against diminishing wall space and taking up shelves threaten to stifle and ensnare me by their very presence. Somehow they don’t even seem relevant to what I do now, so immersed I feel now with my encaustic work. Would I want to put them on show and say this is what I make?
A craft knife rests on the edge of the table... I thought I had tidied my tools away.
Just one then to see how it feels...
I look down at the floor. It definitely needs sweeping again. A mound of torn, mangled canvas with wrangled staples and threads lies there.
I carry three stretcher frames across the floor. I know someone who will use these.
This is good and getting easier.
Another and then another.
As I slash and wrench, I inspect the years of making in my hands.
Interested, inquisitive, surprised even, but not dismayed and definitely not grieving.
By the end of the afternoon only two remain, reprieved with sentiment.
How to deal with lack of space…