All great art is a form of complaint. - John Cage

Most anarchists are gentle people.
-Anna Zilboorg

Saturday, December 10, 2011


Name: Adrienne Callander

How many children do you have and what are their ages?
One boy, 5 years old.

Psychological Impact (Mind):  How did you perceive your artistic identity before kid(s)?
Nomadic, dematerialized, lexical, clever.

How do you perceive you artistic Identity now, post kid(s)?
Let's say "with kid(s)"; "post-kid(s)" upsets my superstitions!  With kiddo:  Concrete, colorful, warm-blooded, historical.
Physical Space and Time (Body): What was your studio routine before children and how has your art-making schedule/routine changed after children?
I was self-centered (rightfully so!), my day was my own, there were pillows of time; now I squeeze making into every available crevice.  I make more now, but I have less time to reflect.

Has your studio space changed to accommodate your children in terms of time, financials, and safety concerns?
I used to have a studio; now I have the dining room.  As much as I would like to go to a separate space, I do not want to be away from home.  God willing and the river don't rise, my son will grow up healthy and strong and will need to connect with me less often throughout the day - that day will come soon enough and I will have my separate space again.  For now, the lack of alone time is a welcome sign that I have a young child.

Has becoming a parent affected your physical art-making as well as the materials you use? Are there processes you have discovered or given up now that you have children?
Of course, with a home studio, I do not handle any toxins; but I am also much more portable - I often make things that I can tuck into a bag and take with me.  Moving to Kentucky from New York has also influenced me greatly.  I have ventured out into the realms of agricultural and textiles in the past five years and there is no place that I go for my work that I cannot also bring my son.  Finn comes with me to the sheep farm and the mill; he draws while I learn to knit and turns my spinning wheel into a space ship.  Six years ago, I could not imagine having a son or a spinning wheel.

Spirit(Heart):  Please describe your core content and conceptual concentration pre-kid(s).
For my graduate thesis, I painted the gallery walls a whiter white as high as I could reach; I meant it less as a comment on exhibition and the gallery-driven art market then as an exercise in transformation with minimal intervention.  I was interested in spaces - public, architectural, mnemonic.  My palette was muted; my products, while sculptural, were primarily visual.  I wanted to do as much as possible with as little as possible.  I recirculated dollar bills after erasing George Washington's mouth.  I painted mosquitoes on the wall with calamine lotion.  I made a series of stovetop prints by placing large sheets of paper over active burners.  I was after the "little feat."

How has becoming a parent affected your imagery, content and ideation?
I suspect that I am currently mid-arc, that my deep investment in fibers over the past four years will eventually connect with my previous interest in the "little feat."   At the moment, I am exploring the intersection of ancient craft (weaving) and digital information and building a framework for public interaction with both modes of making.  Since moving to Kentucky, I have allowed my hands to lead, instead of my intellect.  It may be that teaching takes the intellect out of me and so my new mode of making is blissfully void of (pre)concept.  That is a lovely parallel, come to think of it:  I used to think that I could determine the outcome, and now I prefer not to - why not let my life lead me instead of the other way around?  Why not follow a material instead of bending it to my will?  Why not have this baby?  I chase less and welcome more.

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