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Text and sketches by Amy Forsyth

We’re really feeling the end of this amazing residency approaching! This past week, everyone scurried around, trying to finish things. Some of the larger pieces have already been delivered to the gallery. In the midst of it all, I came down with a cold and lost a whole day trying to sleep long enough to get rid of it. I missed some fun events, too, trying to catch up. We’ll have to believe the stories we’ve been told, which I’ll pass along to you.

We started the week with 100 degree weather, and a few storms that did nothing to relieve the humidity. Fortunately, our spaces are air conditioned, recently fixed, so work continued. Per’s forest of squiggles has grown and become three-dimensional.

Per in his forest

On Tuesday, everyone stopped work in the afternoon to visit Michael Hurwitz’ shop. I hope Ellie might add some photos of this, since I missed it. Work continued at night, as has been typical this entire residency. Everyone puts in 12-14 hour days on a regular basis, which shows in the sheer quantity of work that we’ve started delivering to the Center. It’s great stuff, too. It’s true that you get good at the things you do on a daily basis. Speaking of which, here’s the next installation of Josh’s Sculpture-a-Day project. They’d gotten away from me, somehow he’d managed to make a whole bunch of these while I was busy doing other things.

Heide’s experiments are resulting in some truly gorgeous surfaces and objects. This knob really knocked my socks off. She cast crushed eggshells in black pigmented epoxy in a round ice cube tray, then turned it on the lathe, once it was dry to make a polished knob. This sketch doesn’t really do it justice, it’s really gorgeous. She’s got some other similar experiments going that look great, as well. And Ellie is making a chair! No color (actually, she bleached it today) but she carved the back to respond to the traditional Moravian chair design, turning it into something else entirely! It’s lovely.

Heide’s cast eggshell knob, Ellie’s chair back, and a favorite lunch location

Hartmut has lined all the pieces of his Diary in Wood up on oak boards in preparation for taking them to the Center, and it’s a gorgeous and impressive array. Jake’s been turning giant branches on the lathe, after sawing them up with the chainsaw. Most of our work finished, we’ve been taking some time to enjoy being in this area, in the city, with its variety of cuisines and other adventures. On Wednesday night, there was a drag show at Bob and Barbara’s, which apparently has the longest running drag show in the area. A friend of Ellie’s was one of the emcees, so off they went (I was still snuffling, so I went back to the dorm). The next night we realized would be our last chance just for the Fellows to go out by ourselves, since families were starting to arrive for visits and the opening of the show. We went out for Indian food, followed by drinks at El Vey, where, after a tequila or two, we attempted to fit all seven of us into the photo booth for commemorative photos with predictable results.

We’ve become familiar with several of the security guards at our dorm and studio, who are often friendly and enjoy an occasional chat. Kim, pictured below, who is both greeter and guard at Hamilton Hall is always fun to banter with, and plans to come to our opening at the Center.

An account of our last night out, a portrait of Kim.

Many of us are still finishing up our work, but trying to enjoy our remaining time in this part of the world. Per went to the beach, and Jake took Hartmut to a Phillies game, and Josh’s family has arrived. It’s fun to hear little feet in the dorm hallway. Hartmut’s family has landed in New York and today, he’s gone up to get them. So during our last week, we’ll finish up details and deliver the rest of the work to the Center for installation. I still have to finish my frames for my drawings, finish this sketchbook, and bind it.

We’ve had a wonderful time!

Come to our opening this Friday, August 2nd, from 5-9 at the Center! We’re excited to see you all and show you what we’ve been doing!