Haystack Mountain School of Crafts clings to the slopes at the base of Deer Ilse, Maine, a series of interconnected wooden pathways, cabins, studios and shared spaces. It was here I spent the past four days with a group of 60 fellow artists as part of a session called New Works. We all won the lottery, putting our names into the pot of former instructors who wanted to return and spend time working on fresh ideas or pushing existing work further. And the weather cooperated by handing us blue skies and great weather for the entire time.
I arrived to find I was rooming with Georgia Deal, also from DC and the Corcoran School of Art. Soon after that, metalsmith Claire Sanford walked by–we’d met at Arrowmont. The rest of the day was filled with similar meetings: new acquaintances, book arts colleagues, past Haystack attendees. Wanting to try a different media, I set up my space in the metals studio since this session encourages artists to try new things. I was ready to begin.
The next morning began with a writing workshop conducted by Marianne Boruch. I was excited to attend, since I’m working on a new book of landscape images and wanted some fresh ideas for how to develop the text. Marianne made her workshops fun and very un-intimidating, and the resulting writing done by everyone in the group was inspiring.
I worked in metals for most of the time, making a bezel for a carneline stone I’d brought with me. Studio assistant Molly Vogel gave excellent instructions on how to proceed.
The time went too quickly, but it’s always a wonder how much work
gets done in a short but dedicated time period spent in such a sublime setting. Thank you to all who made this year’s New Works possible.