If you’ve been wanting to come visit us at the Dirt Palace for a while, here’s a chance! Two nights of literary events: Overdue 'release' of Demons Press "collections": Witch Fingers and Trouble. With readings, performances, various entertainments etc from the all-star cast of contributors. Friday's line up: Dungeon Broads, Jaime Lowe, James Talbot Frain, Mark Baumer, jxlia m x Pvblic Bath, Rudy Cheeks, Rachel Ruth, Shey Rivera Sat: Kate Schapria, Matthew Derby, Mary-Kim Arnold, Mimi Chrzanowski, Purelle, Sussy Santana, Suzy Gonzalez (yes the same Suzy Gonzalez who's window you can read about below!), Eli V Manuscript, Walkeer Mettlling. Both nights start at 7:30 and end by 10! What is DMNS anyway? Here! There’s a new website: dmnspress.com
Suzy González graduated with a BFA in Painting at Texas State University in 2012 and attended the Vermont Studio Center later that year. She is a 2015 candidate for an MFA in Painting at the Rhode Island School of Design. Recent exhibitions include Living Architecture: The Sacred Cat Walk at the Rhode Island School of Design Museum and Young Latina Artists: Y Qué? at Mexic-Arte Museum in Austin, TX. Last year, she was featured in the Huffington Posts’ 13 Young Latina Artists Changing the Contemporary Landscape. Upcoming exhibitions include Widening the Cycle, an exhibition on menstrual and reproductive justice at Suffolk University in Boston, MA, and The Art of the Animal at the Museum of Animals and Society in Los Angeles, CA.
My work queries what it means to be a human, animal, or object. I lean towards hybridizations of painting and sculpture in order to explore the realms of 2-D and 3-D simultaneously. My inclination towards figurative works has evolved into a collection of related characters. These hybrids act in synchronization with the exploration of gray areas within socially constructed binaries. In this instance, my characters come together for a vegan feast. They are fueled by popular advertising and current events that objectify both women and animals. Additionally, they consume vegan products from corporate companies, questioning the normalization and colonization of veganism.
In referencing The Last Supper, I subvert the religious beginnings of patriarchal values through a joining of feminist characters. This communal setting brings up Judy Chicago’s Dinner Party, in which a large, triangular table is set with ceramic plates depicting vulva-like portraits of famous women in history. Naturally, Judy Chicago curated women into her ideal community, and this is a taste of my own utopic community. The work takes similarity and difference into consideration, flourishing on the complexity of identity.
Nicki Green is a trans-disciplinary artist living and making work in the bay area. Her work focuses primarily on skill-based craft processes (ceramics, textiles) and is inspired by it's ability to document history and create legacy for marginalized communities. Originally from New England, she received a BFA from the San Francisco Art Institute in 2009, and during the same year, was a recipient of the Schmidt Fellowship for her programming work at Mama Calizo's Voice Factory, one of the many now former alternative Queer performance and gallery spaces in San Francisco, CA. Nicki has exhibited her work nationally, notably at the Leslie Lohman Museum of Gay and Lesbian Art Annex in New York, and the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts in San Francisco. She has also contributed drawings and writing to national and international zines and publications, including Maximum Rock n Roll (San Francisco, CA) and Bend Over Magazine (Berlin, Germany). Recently, she has been participating in Chris Vargas' ongoing conceptual museum project "The Museum of Transgender Hirstory and Art" and is also developing a body of work about the connection of the ceramic ritual object to the cultivation of a mythos around the divine androgynous body.
Caitlin Rose Sweet explores the intersections between craft, queerness, and pop culture to position queerness as a site for incessant transformation and possibilities. Her playful work resists assimilation and mastery through an intentional disinvestment in finished work and proper use of materials. Sweet has shown internationally from Portland Or, to San Francisco Bay Area, New York City and Berlin. This includes such exhibitions as Mix 26 (NY 2013), Craftivism (NY 2013), Invisible Landscapes (PDX 2014), and Words as Objects(PDX 2014). Sweet received her MFA in Applied Craft and Design from PNCA/OCAC in 2014 and lives in Brooklyn.
Queerness is a rich arena to discuss ceramic process, culture and theoretical analysis, and this show, a collaboration between two queer-identified ceramic art makers, initiates these conversations to be had. These two artists approach functionality in relevant, but dissimilar ways, and their practices, as the two have agreed, “have been quoting each other for years.” Sweet’s use of obscure and abstract objects as creative envisioning works perpendicularly to Green’s focus on the immediacy and recognizability of reinterpreted everyday forms. Both work with conceptual tropes steeped in queer community dynamics- Sweet's focus on lesbian identity and historical lesbian craft practices and Green's imagery of urgent transgender community archiving and revolutionary organizing. It is clear that both artists have a deep commitment to craft and practices steeped in interdisciplinarity and discursivity, and the combination of the two work to reinterpret and recall the past, and also envision a future designed for the queer body explicitly. Together, these two use functionality as a lens with which to explore their very different, but inherently connected queer bodies in the world, and begin to unpack the complexities of very queer lives lived steeped in history and impelling revolutionary potential.
Work was made and installed by New Urban Arts students, staff, and mentors. Founded in 1997, New Urban Arts is a nationally-recognized community arts studio for high school students and emerging artists in Providence, Rhode Island. Our mission is to build a vital community that empowers young people as artists and leaders to develop a creative practice they can sustain throughout their lives.
Avon the Alien as told by Florence
December 21st, 1986
Hello my name is ENOLA; however, upon arriving on this 3rd rock from sun #27,834,371, I have adopted the name Avon. As seen on my sweatshirt Avons on this planet are hot, and on this planet exerting heat seems to be a rather good thing. Since arriving here in Amerika I have learned it is much smaller than we learned in Glorup (that is my language for “school”). We were told the capitol of Amerika is Washington D.C., Maryland when it is in fact Providence. Besides that my mission was to find a new food for my people, and I think I may have discovered it. This cold substance that the inhabiters call snow. It falls from the clouds as frozen precipitation and sticks to the ground piling up and up and up. At first touch this substance is terribly chilling, but it tastes rather… satisfying. There is a great abundance since all the inhabiters do with it is play with it, push it off their roads, and leave it there to melt. There are a variety to choose from. There is the standard white snow, the also common black/brown snow, occasionally there are some hearty snows with toys and car parts, and then there is my favorite… the yellow snow! It has a certain tang to it.
Help support the AS220 Printshop buy purchasing one of these limited edition of 20, 5 color screen prints encrusted in jewels and mirror. The AS220 Community Printshop is an open access, low cost printmaking facility in Providence RI.
JIEUN REINER Jieun is looking for a summer sublet! If you have always wanted to live at the Dirt Palace, her room is available from July 23 thru the end of August. Feel free to email dearjieun at gmail dot com if you are interested and would like more details.
Jieun finally got herself a small boat, so summer fun in the sun is a done deal! ;)
It’s been an exciting month for Rachel! All you really need to be made aware of is her recently aquired title of CHAMPION EGG-EATER of the 2015 EGGSTRAVAGANZA. Eating in honor of her mother, Deborah, Rachel slammed 25 hard boilers, blazing the toughest egg-heads of Providence and bringing home the grand price of a $50 gift card to P.F. Chang’s restaurant, in addition to this stunning trophy designed by none other than the great Emily Shinada herself.
While preparing for a much-needed southerly vacation to her NC home, Rachel has been working long and happy hours during peak theatre season as Production Manager at AS220’s Black Box Theatre. Between hanging lights, mopping floors, stocking bathrooms, making coffee runs, selling tickets, affixing disco balls, connecting with a brilliant variety of artists, and troubleshooting weathered equipment, she feels beyond fortunate to have to the opportunity to contribute to such a meaningful organization as AS220. She urges everyone who is able and willing, to make their own contribution to AS220, small or large. The resources provided through spaces like the Black Box Theatre (one of those being herself…a human resource…a resource of knowledge and spirit!) DIRECTLY enable artists to make meaningful work.
Other less visible projects press forward as the seasons change. Rachel welcomes back outdoor running season, open windows, and the healing sunshine. She hopes the best for you and your loved ones now and always.
Do you ever have those ideas, that you know are maybe bad ideas, or at best mediocre ideas, that you should just let go of, but for some reason you can’t…something is tugging at you saying, "No!You have to follow this questionable idea and push it into reality"?. Well that’s the story of this project that I am going to report to you on this month…subtitled: Fifty Lamp Shades of Grey. So in my never-ending infatuation with the era just before cinema and all of the optical toys and tricks that prophesize and point the way towards the invention of the all important phenomena known as ‘the moovies’, I learned about lampshades from this time that were printed on the backs as well as the fronts. This back printing served to alter the meaning of the picture printed on the front when the lamp is turned on. Based on this historic technique, I set out to make lamp shades that changed in a specific way (insert wink) when ‘turned on’ (insert second wink) i.e. fancy ladies with big dresses, that when illuminated revealed some things going on beneath their skirts. I was working on this project in the depths of the never ending winter when the news was all about how everybody was going to the movies to watch “50 Shades of Grey” which I know nothing about other than that it’s ‘sexy’ and kind of normative and possibly sucks…but you know what doesn’t suck: puns! So with no further ado…here are some pictures of 50 Lamp Shades of Grey. Probably NSFW, unless everyone you work with is cool with ladies with complicated hair-do's pissing on the moon. Do you need one of these? Or need to give one as a gift? Or have a story of a bad idea that you actually followed through on that you will share with me in commiseration. Hit me up! Psyched to trade. Limited edition of 50.
Muffy listens to a lot of audio books while printing. In a Jimi Hendix audio book biography there was a part where he was deceased and his friends found his diary. Whole sections day after day said only S.O.S. His friends were upset, worrying that he was long distressed. Then they went back and read the initial S.O.S. entry and learned he meant it to stand for Same Old Shit. Well its S.O.S time for Muffy, printing kid's leggings, t-shirts, adult leggings and skirts, and cum rags. Check them out here
The past month has seen Nina mending toucan necks, searching for scallops, and making octopus pinatas. She is gearing up to wire 150 lights before leaving her year-long post as lighting manager at Studio DUNN and getting ready to jump into the wild world of freelancing. If you or your friends ever need something printed, sewn, designed, or animated, give her a call! You can see some of her work at ninaruelle.com, and you can email her at ninaruelle [at] gmail.comfor more examples.
MONTHLY PICTORIAL TREAT FROM THE DUSTY SHELVES OF THE DIRT PALACE
FURTHERING THE QUEST TO SPREAD FUN LIKE GIN AND JUICE, MOSTLY GIN
Trouble: it’s many things to many people -- including the name of the once richest dog on earth..i.e. the dog that Leona Helmsely left12 million dollars to in her will. And it’s a book! That we have in our library with stories of ass-hole landlords (though not precisely Leona) and all kinds of other trouble: natural disaster, addiction, crime, lust etc. There are also a lot of drawings of ‘dinks’ (aka Mike Leslie speak for ‘penises’). ALSO coincidentally this is one of the books that is being belatedly released at the readings this weekend (see above) or here if you like to organize your outings using Facebook.
Check it out!! The Dirt Palace has a new website at long last! Along with images from 15 years of window installations and bios of past and current members, we now also have galleries of the space and archives galore!! Do you have photos or ephemera that you think would be cool to add to the mix? Send it our way!! We're getting organized! www.dirtpalace.org
ALEX HAMMONDlives and works in Brooklyn, New York and is currently working on her MFA in SVA’s Art Practice department. Her work investigates the construction of grand narratives and utopic visions, their uses and hazards. Hammond grew up in California’s Sacramento Valley, a region defined culturally and economically by back-to-the-land hippies, corporate agribusiness, biotechnology and urban sprawl. After spending years in San Francisco, Hammond became fascinated by the dominant language of hypercapitalist technology culture, its rhetoric of redemption through profit. She was obsessed by the fact that this self-proclaimed cloud-based culture of app-development and megaservers actually was located somewhere, and that that somewhere was California, the historic land of milk, honey and boom and bust economics.
The Walliecamp Fortune Factory installation employs verbal and visual imagery of the desert landscape of the American West, a site inscribed with myths of heroic freedom, masculinity, and self-reliance as well as histories of genocide, exploitation and ecological crisis. Hammond uses this imagery to investigate constructions of the American Dream as it relates to labor, wealth, technology and quests for spiritual enlightenment. In other words: life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.
A site-modified presentation of the Walliecamp Fortune Factory was installed at the Dirt Palace for January of 2015. Window text enumerated "facts and fantasies" regarding the economics of American life in the 21st century. Windows were painted with the following texts:
A modular epic landscape that inspires in spite of architecture… imagine:
MICHAEL MENCHACA's work is heavily informed by his background. As the child of two Mexican immigrants, his work reflects a desire to bridge his Latin roots and contemporary American culture. His chosen medium, printmaking, lends to the history of art and language in Mexican-American culture, and his work continues to be an exploration of the iconography and symbology of Pre-Columbian civilizations.
Menchaca’s work is an allegory that re-imagines the history of the Americas. He presents metaphors of contemporary social issues with a uniquely pre-Hispanic visual vocabulary. His symbols and motifs harken to those of ancient South American culture specifically; however, his imagery speaks widely to human communication and history.
Rachel adopted her first puppy in February of 2015. This new companionship is filling a number of emotional voids for Rachel. Rachel spends a lot of time smiling now. Rachel is finally Perfectly Happy.
MONTHLY PICTORIAL TREAT FROM THE DUSTY SHELVES OF THE DIRT PALACE
FURTHERING THE QUEST TO SPREAD FUN LIKE GIN AND JUICE, MOSTLY GIN
New Book about the epic and revolutionary Bookmobile project! This book came as a surprise gift to us in the mail. Is there anything better than getting surprise books in the mail? The answer is no. There is actually nothing better. After melting with joy, we did a little investigation and figured out that our pal Coral Short was part of how this book found it's way to our shelf. Thanks Coral!!!
the dirt palace is a feminist art collective located in the olneyville neighborhood of providence, rhode island. visit http://dirtpalace.org for more info! also: subscribe to our mailing list (only 1-2 mailings per month) also: buy zines and comics et cetera from our ETSY STORE!!!!!!!