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Saturday, October 24, 2015

Mamie Gregory - Madame Butterfly.

The Results Of A Museum Visit.

Blank canvas just waiting for inspiration to hit.

Inspiration, inspiration, inspiration.  Just one word to describe what happens when you visit a museum. Remember my last post about getting yourself to a museum?  For an artist, there is overwhelming inspiration to be had.  And I am inspired.

Basket from the Nevada State Museum collection.

It was the visit to the Nevada Museum of Art which led to visiting the Nevada State Museum, a subsequent visit to the Palm Springs Art Museum and now another scheduled visit to the Agua Caliente Cultural Museum, all to research basket makers, that has me inspired.  So it's into the studio, new big canvas on the easel, and the resolution of how I want to present Guadalupe Arenas who was a member of the Agaua Caliente band of Cahuilla Indians and an extraordinary basket weaver.  I also have a friend who believes she owns two of her baskets and just talking about Arenas and her work has encouraged me to paint this woman.  HOWEVER, I cannot find images of her...arrrgggg. Next week I visit the archives of the Agua Caliente Cultural Museum where I am sure to find what I want, but in the mean time, all that inspiration is bubbling up and over leading me to work with Mamie Gregory.  

Mamie Gregory aka Madam Butterfly.

Also known as Madame Butterfly, Mamie Gregory was another extraordinary basket weaver, a Panamint Shoshone living from 1880's to 1951.  She fits right into the outline for : my Indian Women Portraits, the time period, basket weaver, lived in the area where I live....  and with an alias of Madame Butterfly she is just too delicious to ignore.  This moniker derives from her recurring designs of butterflies, butterflies, butterflies with a few lizards, squirrels and what is described as a whirlwind.  I stumbled across her when visiting the Agua Caliente Cultural Museum a couple years ago and she has floated in and out of my creative conscious since, so here we go.  Inspiration from museum visits moving me into the studio to work on a new creation.

Beginning of new portrait painting.

Check back to see how this painting progresses.

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