This past weekend was beautiful, whether you celebrated Mother’s Day or not. I talk a lot about the not so nice parts of living in New York, but a nice part is there are always surprises, no matter how long I’ve lived here.
Art Child’s Saturday art class was invited to a small, private gallery in the afternoon. The gallery is in an old, nondescript building on a street I’ve walked down many times, never knew it was there. Surprise! 5 flights of stairs to climb. Bigger, better surprise, there was an elevator. The space itself was interesting to look at, bright, lots of windows, and enough bars and police locks to make me nostalgic for my first couple of apartments.
The show included recent sculptures by Tyrone Mitchell and a variety of traditional African art and artifacts. I forgot to ask if it was ok for me to post photos of Mr. Mitchell’s work, so I won’t, but I will recommend going to see an exhibition if you have the opportunity. Very thought provoking, using found, everyday objects for social commentary. I’m not an artist, don’t know the right words, but there was a piece I didn’t want to leave. On a wooden scaffolding, a pot set into the top, a woven, painted basket decorated with painted money cowrie shells (I have three money cowrie snails eating algae in my tank as I type) coming out of the top of the pot, and coming out of the top of the basket, a mask, a woman’s face. I can’t say why, but something about the whole moved me, and I had a highly inappropriate urge to climb the scaffolding and pick up that basket. No worries, I didn’t touch.
Then I saw a link on Twitter to an article in the New Yorker about the monetization of mommy blogs. For some reason I can’t link it now, sorry. Anyway, my first thought was, really? I haven’t made a dime. Then I remembered, I don’t do anything to try and make money from Mrs Fringe. Second, and more importantly, this isn’t a mommy blog. Sure, I’m the mama, most of that role is fantastic, and I sometimes talk about mama-ing, but that isn’t what Mrs Fringe is about.
I wondered if I should regret this fact. Would it have been smarter, more practical? Maybe, but I don’t regret it. Most of my life is about mama-ing, has been for a long time. I like having this one area for myself as a whole and empty pocketed-person. And I’m guessing the odds of actually making money from a mommy blog are almost as astronomical as any other form of profit from creative writing.
If this were a mommy blog, I would talk about the exhibition in terms of Art Child, the beautiful heartbreak of watching and listening to her experience this show; the opportunity for her to see and touch the artifacts, to speak to the curator, and the joy of seeing her get it in ways that I can’t. She has challenges navigating the everyday world, and by the artist came to speak she was wilting and we needed to leave, but in front of these sculptures she understood their power.
But this is my this-and-that, unfocused eclectic whole person blog. So I talk about the surprise of the gallery itself, hidden in the midst of stores selling rhinestones and questionable perfumes.