>News

Manifesto February 14 2017, 0 Comments

This (now very altered) Manifesto was originally written and then read aloud by Marina Abramovic' in front of an audience at the Smithsonian.  It was conceived of as a performance piece which would be recited by odd numbers of people all dressed in Lab coats.  She has invited anyone, anywhere to perform this piece.  I like her generosity very much and so have copied her Manifesto here.  In order to make it better reflect my own ideas, I've made many changes throughout (not highlighted) and added a couple of paragraphs.  As time goes on, I will continue to alter it as I get more in touch with what I mean to say.  I'm grateful to Marina for laying a foundation for this thought provoking process. 

For me, there's a discomfiting aspect to this Manifesto as Marina has written it.  It has to do with her use of the word "should".  While I understand this is the nature of a manifesto, I feel it's important to begin by stating... 

The Artist's relation to "should"
An Artist should examine what ought to be.
"Should" is a subjective experience and should be arrived at after deep personal reflection.

An Artist's code of conduct
An Artist should avoid lying to herself or others.
An Artist should not steal ideas from another Artist (that is no way to be truly creative).
An Artist should not compromise himself with regards to
the Art market (that is also no way to be truly creative).
An Artist should not kill another human being.
An Artist should not make himself into an idol.
An Artist should not make himself into an idol.
An Artist should not make himself into an idol.

An Artist's relation to her love life
An Artist should avoid falling in love with another artist.
An Artist should avoid falling in love with another artist.

An Artist's relation to the erotic
An Artist should take pleasure in the physical aspects of life.
An Artist should develop an erotic point of view on the world.
An Artist should be erotic.

An Artist's relation to suffering
An Artist suffers.
Suffering brings transformation.
Through suffering an Artist is urged to transcend the mundane.
Through suffering an Artist is urged to transcend the mundane.

An Artist's relation to depression
An Artist should not remain in depression.
Depression is a dis-ease and care must be taken to cure it.
An appeal to intuition must be made to find the path out of its paralyzing effects.
Depression is not productive for an artist.
Depression is not productive for an artist.

An Artist's relation to suicide
Suicide comes in many forms.
An Artist should not commit suicide.

An Artist's relation to inspiration
An Artist should look deep inside himself for inspiration.

The deeper she looks inside herself the more universal she becomes
The Artist is Universe.
The Artist is Universe.
The Artist is Universe.

An Artist's relation to self control
The Artist should not have total self control about her life.
The Artist should have total self control about her work.
The Artist should not have total self control about her life.
The Artist should have total self control about her work.

An Artist's relation to the intellect
The Artist should remember that the intellect treats everything mechanically.
The intellect relies on immobility to form a clear idea.
Instinct, on the other hand, proceeds organically within movement.

An Artist's relation to transparency
The Artist gives and receives at the same time.
Transparency means to be receptive.
Transparency means to give.
Transparency means to receive.

An Artist's relation to symbols
An Artist creates his own symbols.
Symbols are an Artist's language.
The language must be translated.
Sometimes it's difficult to find the key.
Sometimes it's difficult to find the key.
Sometimes it's difficult to find the key.

An Artist's relation to silence
An Artist has to understand silence.
An Artist has to create a space for silence to enter her work.
Silence is like an iceberg in the middle of a turbulent ocean.
Silence is like an iceberg in the middle of a turbulent ocean.

An Artist's relation to solitude
An Artist must make time for long periods of solitude.
Solitude is extremely important.
Away from home.
Away from studio.
Away from family.
Away from friends.
An Artist should stay for long periods of time at the waterfalls.
An Artist should stay for long periods of time listening to the sounds of nature.
An Artist should stay for long periods of time looking at the fast running rivers.
An Artist should stay for long periods of time at looking at the horizon
where the ocean and the sky meet.
An Artist should stay for long periods of time looking at the night sky.
An Artist has many ways of becoming inspired.
An Artist has many ways of showing up for work.

An Artist's relation to work
An Artist should avoid going to the studio every day.
It is counter-productive to treat his schedule as a bank employee does.
An Artist works best when an idea comes to him in a dream or
during the day as a vision that arrives as a surprise.
An Artist should not over produce.
An Artist should avoid her own art pollution.
An Artist should avoid her own art pollution.
An Artist should avoid her own art pollution.

An Artist's possessions
A Buddhist Monk advised that it's best to have nine possessions in life--
One robe for the summer
One robe for the winter
One pair of shoes
One begging bowl for food
One mosquito net
One prayer book
One umbrella
One mat to sleep on and,
One pair of glasses if needed
An Artist should decide for himself what are the minimum personal possession 
that she should have.
An Artist should have more and more of less and less.
An Artist should have more and more of less and less.
An Artist should have more and more of less and less.

The list of Artist's friends
An Artist should have friends that take pleasure in spiritual travel.
An Artist should have friends that take pleasure in spiritual travel.  

The list of Artist's enemies
Enemies are very important.
The Dali Lama said, "It is easy to have compassion with friends but 
much more difficult to have compassion with enemies.
An Artist must learn to forgive.
An Artist must learn to forgive.
An Artist must learn to forgive.

Different death scenarios
An Artist has to be aware of his own mortality.
For an Artist it is not only important how he lives his life but also how he dies.
An Artist should look at the symbols of her work for the sign of different death scenarios.
An Artist should die consciously without fear.
An Artist should die consciously without fear.
An Artist should die consciously without fear.

Different funeral scenarios
An Artist should give instructions before the funeral so that
everything is done the way she wants it.
The funeral is the Artist's last art piece before leaving.
The funeral is the Artist's last art piece before leaving.
The funeral is the Artist's last art piece before leaving.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Booth For Sale at the NY Renaissance Festival November 02 2016, 0 Comments

After many wonderful years attending the NY Renaissance Festival the time has come for me to sell my booth and move on to other venues.  Below are images of the booth I built, maintained and have improved upon over the past two decades.  

Two years ago new wooden siding was installed on the outside of the building as well as folding front doors (which double as display space during festival hours).  These front doors close onto a permanent installation Fortune Teller booth that is situated at the front entrance of the booth.  The Fortune Teller dispenses business sized cards one at a time when fed one quarter.

This booth, located at #29 Lakeside Market, is centrally located on the fairgrounds and opens to an active field (Greenfield Commons) where people gather to eat as well as watch impromptu performances throughout the day. It's a great location along a wide, paved path that will keep you busy selling your wares throughout the day. 

For additional information and sale price I can be reached by email or phone.

  • email: wendydrolma@gmail.com  or,
  • phone: 845.943.0444

Below is a list of features:

  • Deck Footprint:  15' x 15' (not including ramp)
  • Steep pitch cedar shingle roof (5 years old)
  • Pressure treated decking on floor
  • All entrances (entrance, back door and window) are securely lockable for easy end of day closing.
  • In booth storage closet with shelving
  • Private, shaded back yard is open to a large lake.
  • Unfinished sleeping loft (accessible using permanent ladder in back of booth)
  • Wheelchair accessible
  • Bench seating at entrance for customer comfort
  • New wood siding.
  • Permanent installation Fortune Teller Booth (great hawker)
  • Wooden counter top (live edge)
  • Gentle breeze rolling in from lake throughout the day
  • No direct sunlight inside front of booth.  
  • Well loved and in excellent condition
  • Friendly neighbors

  • Front doors are hinged and close onto Fortune Teller booth

 

  • Booth fully open.  Hinged doors become additional selling space.

 

Doors bolted to floor provide additional display space.

 

Standing in front of booth.  Right side of Fortune Teller.

 

  • Entering booth to the left side of Fortune Teller.  Showing mirrored door to storage closet

  • Window and back door open to let in light and a cool breeze from the lake.


  • View from behind sales counter.  Closet door painted red.  

 

Back door open to back yard.  

 

Moving around booth.  Edge of closet showing on left side of photo.

 

  • Looking right to left inside booth.  Live edge wood sales counter on right.

  • Looking up toward unfinished sleeping loft area.  

  • Standing in loft looking out back side of booth onto lake.  #29 Lakeside Market

 

  • Backyard.  Collapsible plywood table attached to back of building
  • Backyard is private.  Completely blocked on right side of booth.
  • Entrance on left side is gated.

Exhibition of a Rhinoceros in Venice October 28 2016, 0 Comments

Exhibition of a Rhinoceros in Venice

by Wendy Drolma

 

After a fitful night of sleep she wakes feeling oddly refreshed. It’s not often she’s able to decipher her dreams, but this morning she is, and this small victory feels like a gift, a mysterious assurance that what she is seeking, is seeking her. Removing one sheet of white paper from her desk, she pauses and reminds herself that she’s no longer trying to organize the mess of ideas that fill her mind. She appreciates this clear, clean sheet of paper, choosing to see it as a place to fade away from the usual troubles of life. Carefully she lifts one side of the page and overlapping it to the other, forms a tri-fold, pressing each side to a crease before inserting it into an envelope. On the surface of the envelope she writes,“The Masque Speaks” and closing her eyes she whispers “Speak to me,” before placing it inside her backpack and walking the short distance from her home to the railway station.
 
A mask, once acquired, can be stubborn and difficult to let go of. Also, like all things of the mind, its perception is limited. Often one mask doesn't know when it's safe to speak, or what's expected. Masks must coexist with one another. To avoid being paraded around, or not showing up when most needed, each works tirelessly.
 
Have no fear, daily your mask transforms you from worrier to warrior.
 
The painting she’s on her way to see, Exhibition of a Rhinoceros in Venice, is waiting patiently for her arrival. Completed in the mid-18th century by Pietro Longhi, it is her favorite of his works. At the center of the painting, an animal tamer stands behind a low wooden partition. To his left stand costumed spectators, one woman surrounded by three men, all wearing capes and Venetian masks. Raising a whip and the horn of an animal in one hand, the showman points with his other to a rhinoceros eating hay in the foreground. When she first saw this painting over ten years before, it was the masked courtesan in the background, attended by a woman on either side, who captured her imagination. Laced securely in powder blue corset and white gown, the courtesan appears demur, held upright, stoic and on display as she waits to be noticed. Draped across her left forearm hangs a basket containing a single white dove.
 
The Goose Girl dresses like a Countess and everyone is stunned by her grace and charm.
 
Framing her direct gaze, a black, oval mask covers the courtesan’s face. Its macabre appearance is jarring in contrast to the heightened femininity of her dress. This particular mask, traditionally called a Moretta, draws attention to her, but it also renders her mute. It is held onto the face by gripping the teeth around a wooden button that is fastened securely underneath. In order to speak she must remove the mask. This feature is thought by some to create an aura of mystery, endowing a woman with a greater degree of independence by allowing her to decline conversation with any man she chooses. Others do not share this view of the Moretta. To them, the mask is a pretense in which the courtesan is forced to hide herself in order to survive. The modern woman looking at this painting clearly recognizes this dilemma.
 
Your mask is not obsolete technology.  It is poetry with a gritty sense of revolution.
 
Hypnotized by the tree line as it undulates outside the train car window, she massages an ache that's developed in her left shoulder. This pain is one of many mysterious symptoms she’s been experiencing. She believes it is her body saying no to something and the threat of not knowing what, makes her feel anxious. She wonders what words would best describe the way she feels. With any luck, she could capture and hold them to the page like wild animals. After rummaging through her backpack and finding nothing to write with, she feels disappointed and chastises herself for traveling unprepared. Sometimes, mild frustration builds into rage, silent and gnawing, and from there into a loneliness that is more than just fleeting. It feels punishing, a kind of banishment and exile. Most people don't recognize this in her.
 
Choosing a mask requires precision and a reckless yearning. 
 
Arriving at the museum station, she stands disoriented for a moment as she watches the train pull away. Then she looks around for signs and makes her way up the staircase at the far end of the platform. She remembers that someone once told her she had x-ray vision. The memory gives her a vague sense of confidence. Though flattered, she’s never been sure of what to say about the things she sees through.
 
If the mask is not your servant, it will gladly be your master.
 
Once inside the museum she takes the white envelope from her bag, leaves the bag at the coat check, and makes her way to Room 39 on Level 2 next to Central Hall. She feels as one might, sneaking up on a long lost relative--unsure if she will be welcomed or shunned. The exhibition rooms are situated along a broad corridor. Between each room and the next, heavy double doors on opposite ends open to reveal vaulted ceilings with ornate moldings. The rich Damask wallpaper is as Baroque as the artworks displayed upon it. Entering Room 39, she catches sight of the painting by Longhi but, to savor her approach, she decides to look at the other paintings first. When she finally stands in front of Exhibition of a Rhinoceros in Venice her eyes move slowly across three centuries and settle on the long-awaiting courtesan, who unflinchingly returns her stare.
 
You have come like an arrow to the target, flying towards your unmasking.
 
Her breathing slows and her vision blurs. Shape and color begin to merge. No longer able to identify the features of the mask, she continues to stare, thinking no thoughts, just reaching into the mask as if into infinity. Taking it into her hands, she turns it over, feeling its weight and the fine grain of the leather. She smells its musky odor.  She caresses its underside and strokes the wooden button, burnished from wear. Then, as if outside of time, she lifts it to her face and takes the button between her teeth. She is, at once, the courtesan and the one standing before her. Subject and object are one: a presence that has no name and is not limited in any way.
 
The white dove coos. Perching on the edge of its basket, it takes the envelope in its beak and as if tethered to a fine thread flies gracefully around the room, fluttering its wings, looping up and around, weaving a message in the air. Then it gently returns the envelope to her open palm, before settling back in its basket.
 
Slowly she takes the mask from her face, and holding it in front of her, looks deep into its eyes. She silently thanks both mask and courtesan, and becomes herself again. Opening the envelope, she pulls out the blank page with trembling hands, unfolds it, and reads:
 
Shame on you for thinking I’m a Psychic.

 

© Wendy Drolma 2016

 

 


The Strange Recital - An Exciting New Podcast September 21 2016, 0 Comments

Coming in mid October!  

"Exhibition of a Rhinoceros in Venice" is a short story about masks written and read by mask artist Wendy Drolma.  Just in time for Halloween, it will be featured in an upcoming episode of The Strange Recital.  In the meantime, please use the link to enjoy the other fine stories available there.  Subscribe and you'll receive notification when 

 


Savannah - new headdress March 18 2016, 0 Comments

The best thing about returning home after being in sunny, warm(ish) New Orleans is finally having the time again to create new work.  I was prompted to make this headdress as someone requested it (and it struck me as an excellent idea).  Beginning pattern making for this piece, I could see it wasn't going to be easy.  Each horn is 12" tall and during the wet shaping process leather becomes very pliable and does not easily submit to my will nor hold it's shape.  I didn't think things would end well but, little by little, Savannah was born.  I'm still mesmerized by the power of this process.  I've included Savannah as part of my online collection titled "Headdresses" for those who wish to run wild with it.         

 

 


The Grand Illusion November 14 2014, 0 Comments

New Collection of Surrealist inspired masks.  Just click on "Collections" above to view "The Grand Illusion"

 


Corvus II October 24 2014, 0 Comments

Halloween is almost here and I have another version of Corvus available for purchase...$250

 


Corvus - The Raven October 10 2014, 0 Comments

Your mask is changing you already, it's a fireball hurtling through the sky to where you are now. You can choose not to look up but it's a blazing ball throwing sparks onto your face.

 This mask is new and is one of a kind.  Email me at wendydrolma@gmail.com if you'd like to make it yours this Halloween.  Leather, velvet, black feathers.  $300 USD


Fortune Teller Booth July 28 2014, 0 Comments

I've been having a lot of fun creating a fortune teller booth inside my booth at the NY Renaissance Festival and have made a Pinterest board documenting its progress.  Click on the image below to have a look.  You can "follow" me there for updates.  Show is located in Tuxedo, NY and is open all weekends in August and September.  Hope to see you there.  Enjoy!  

 


Jester: Chewing the Scenery April 03 2014, 0 Comments

Leave it to Mother Nature to offer the brilliant oranges, bright yellows. golds and flaming reds that add just the right punch and pizzazz most leaf-peepers love,  The peak color intensity of a little mischief making Jester and this photographer's eye lasted throughout the fall season, proving that stepping out with a camera and a mask can be just as fun as donning one.  On good days, Jester will do most anything for a laugh--even rest comfortably on the train tracks awaiting the next train! Next stop, Greenwich Village!