Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Joy-ridden, a little art show by yours truly

I've been making plush for 4 years now.  Hard to believe, isn't it?  In some regards it feels like I've done it forever, in others it feels like I just started yesterday.  It is not unlike parenting in that regard.  Oh, how time flies/crawls simultaneously!

A close-up of "Emerging," a needle-worked photograph by Abby Langdon

And as much as I love what I do, I was feeling a little burned out.  A little stagnant.  It was time to shake things up a bit and try something new.  Enter my first ever SOLO ART SHOW!
A shot of the 14 pieces in the show just before the opening.
Yes, indeed-y, my friends, I took that extra, wobbly step across the threshold, crossing officially over from Craftworld to Artworld.  And, as it turns out, it isn't such a leap after all.  I mean, I consider plush-making to be art, absolutely.  I've had plush pieces show up in galleries here and there, and it's been a thrill each and every time.  But this was different.  This was a personal challenge, an introspective journey.  Some people have New Year's Resolution?  I had an art show.  From the moment 2012 heralded in I began working on these pieces to explore my creativity, my consciousness of my path through life, and my view of the world around me.

It's been a wonderful experience.  I've learned so much about myself.  I've learned to let creativity come as it will, not to rush it or push it or enforce constraints that need not be there.  I've learned to go with the flow, and to recognize inspiration when it quietly sits down beside me.  It has been an absolute joy to create this show.
The work consists of needle-worked photography on canvas and miniature needle-worked assemblages in jars.
And so I named the show Joy-ridden, because that's exactly what I want to be - riddled with joy.  I think far too many of us know what it is to be constantly guilt-ridden and angst-ridden.  I have left that by the wayside.  I want to be joy-ridden, don't you?  So let's!  Let's be thrilled to be alive and spread that joy around.
Funky angled shot with Tree/House in the foreground.
That's what my show is about.  Looking at the things around me and seeing all of the beauty: the old, abandoned building with the out-dated stereotype painted on the side, the sleeping trees in the dead of winter, the giant robot that makes me smile every time we drive past.  None of it is mundane.
Opportune Moment and Prize Inside, two needle-worked assemblages.
The little jars are terrariums filled with the ingredients to a happy existence.  These are the things I hope to carry with me and pull out whenever I need them.  My safe place, my opportune moment, my ebb and flow, they are all part of what keep me moving in the right direction.  I hope you have those things, too.

The show opened this past Saturday, and it was wonderful.  Dear friends and family were there, as were lots of new faces.  There was so much positive feedback.  I was riding high on a cloud all night.
That's me to the left, laughing like a goon, surrounded with love.
I want to say a huge thank you to Chris and Aileen at Fabricate for this opportunity.  They've been the primary brick and mortar source of abbydid plush for the past few years, and they were gracious in their willingness to take a chance on me and my first solo show.  I also owe a huge debt of gratitude to Christina Ward Creatures who generously used her vacation time to help me hang the show (and when I say help I mean she did most of the work while I got the hell out of the way).  And lastly, I am so extraordinarily grateful to my husband Jason.  No one on this planet has a more supportive spouse, it simply isn't possible.  From hanging the show to framing to helping me determine when a piece was done to knocking out design work at my every whim, he is patient and kind and talented.

I'm sickening myself with how sappy all of this is.  I'll be back to my randy, sassy self momentarily, I promise.  Meanwhile, go see the show while it's up at Fabricate through May 6th.  You'll be glad you did, promise.  Details are available here: Joy-ridden by Abby Langdon


Halfmad said...

We LOVE you and I MUST have one of your new works! -- Mary T.

Christina Ward said...

Thank you. It was a pleasure spending time with you and your gang. Thanks for letting me be a part of it.

Leeanna Butcher said...

The show looks amazing! Way to go Lady! :D Wish I could have been there.

Raggy Rat said...

wow - awesome work abby - so grown up - not a bouncing bob in site - surrounded by love - just what ayou deserve xxxxx

ROBOT Inside said...

I love you so much and your work is such a reflection of who you are! I am so grateful for our friendship and that you have the gift of create!

out of the frame said...

wow, Abby, it looks great! Well done!