We packed it up on Sunday night. My first show. I cut the twine and nylon that hung my poems and paintings on the walls. I heard a satisfying snap with each break. I felt it, too.
My poetry and paintings hung the course of two weekends on the walls of Scarsdale, a lovely laid back space tucked away in the S&R compound on the busy Shaw Boulevard, boasting artisan doughnuts and croughnuts.
The exhibit was called “If the Ground Moves: Villanelles in Mixed Media.” This was my first independent body of work created as a full show. The work was not only all my own, but also extremely personal. It was not just a chip off of my creative bark, but a walk through a grove of trees whispering my story. In the days leading to the event, I felt my spirit shrink back in unease, but increase too with anticipation.
The work is made up of 13 poems and 3 painting compositions (made up of 12 individual pieces). All but one of the poems were written in California coffee shops and train rides. The odd one out, and the collection’s keystone, was written in my favorite local Legazpi coffee shop. The paintings were made on wood and canvas, a mix of acrylic, ink, graphite and charcoal.
I could not be any happier about my very first solo show.
If you’d like to know more about the details of the work, please check out my website: www.nathaniaaritao.com.
I have also made a facebook page and instagram account dedicated to my art. Please follow and keep me accountable. I hope to make more art and share more art this year.
On Saturday night, I opened my first solo art show entitled If the Ground Moves: Villanelles in Mixed Media.
In the morning, we filled the room with poetry and paintings, installing my work into the space. In the evening, the room filled and flowed until no seats were left and friends had to stand. There was conversation. There was music. There were my paintings looking out at everyone, singing their own song. And then there was me at the microphone, reading precious words to those who had gathered.
For right now, after so many words and brushstrokes – it seems I can’t say much. I am ridiculously happy with how it’s all come together, but I cannot pull a clear thought together about how I feel, where I stand, or what in the world is going on in my head.
In the meantime, my poetry and my paintings will hopefully keep talking for me. They are still up at Scarsdale on Shaw Boulevard until February 1st.
If you were one of the friends present at the show, talk to me.
But seriously, call me, send me a message, drop me a line at email@example.com or visit my new page here.
Give me violent reactions. Send me drawings. Make up diagrams. Talk back!
I swing back and forth. Mostly I am tickled with delight or excitedly nervous, but between this and that thought, I freeze momentarily in terror.
I am putting up my first solo show of poetry and paintings.
This is a dream come true. And hopefully the first show of a lifetime of sharing art.
It is also an exercise in vulnerability. My paintings and drawings will be on the walls, as will my words, carefully pieced together. On the opening night, I will pick up a mic and read to whoever has gathered.
Last year I vowed I would make more time for my art – between the adventures of running operations for a social business, teaching classes at the barre and telling stories to Filipino children affected by the destructive typhoons.
While traveling in September, after a caffeinated wave of inspiration, I decided I would go for it.
This is me going for it.
Friends tell me I am brave for doing this. And though that strengthens my heart, it is also when I hear those words that I remember to be scared.