It is getting harder and harder to find things to write about now that critiques and classroom visits are over. I know that the hell week most call "finals week" is meant to be both the best and worst time to be alive because as a student you're so close to freedom you can taste it but also you have a thousand papers, assignments, and tests to study for...which is causing a total melt down in your mind. But for a grad student the end of the semester doesn't actually mean anything. I will continue working, continue reading random articles, continue doing the same old stuff like I normally do. It's just slowing down lately is all. There isn't as much of a demand to be on top of my game since all I have to do for the "end of the semester" is submit a 6 page paper and take a non comprehensive exam. Don't get me wrong, I am not complaining by any means but I have slacked in my studio because of this slowing down.
It's brought up questions in my mind however. I've already started planning on new projects for the fall and trying to get a timeline organized for my summer since I'll be gone a majority of it to Ireland. It'll be weird to leave for 6 weeks and come back to a whole new group of students, both graduate and undergraduate. Most of my friends I have made outside my graduate team will be moving on to bigger and better things since they walk the stage on May 7th and graduate. I'll have an entire new class of freshman in ceramics, new or returning students in the advanced classes, and who knows what in the main arts building. I make my way around the department pretty well, with observing classes, attending events, and working for both the art history and studio departments as my assistantship.
Next year I also may be teaching a 2-2 load, which is completely up in the air for who knows how long. It could go one of two ways, maybe even a third unexpected way that I haven't thought about yet (and which seems to be the general flow of my life here at Southern in the art department...there's always a curve ball that throws me off my game). Basically though I could (1) get the new TA2 assistantship and be responsible for teaching two introductory classes, either 2-D, 3-D, or Drawing 1. In which case I would be dying on all accounts mentally and emotionally, probably grading papers over a beer, and staying up late reading student work while trying not the hate the world. (Ok thats a bit of an overstatement, but it could happen, you never know). (2) I could not get the TA2 assistantship, and I would remain a weird split party slave to various departments working abnormal assistantship hours and just doing what I've been doing. Or (3) the entire thing goes up in a blind blazing fury and all hell breaks loose. That's the most radical option. What would cause it, who knows.
So yea, it's looking a bit fishy for next semester. There will be 8 new graduates joining the team. Of those 8, how many actually show up is a gamble so I've been told. I may be getting a studio mate who I will have to squish into a corner of the ceramics room somewhere. Just a few things to think about for the upcoming fall semester. I intend to keep applying to conferences, shows, and anything I can get my hands on while we are out of school. I want to land a residency somewhere, but when and how I would do it I've got no clue. I'm semi excited about one thing I applied to and I've yet to hear back about and thats the Vermont Studio Residency. A fellow grad of mine received a rejection letter early last week, but I haven't received anything yet. That could be good or it could be bad. I double checked my application just to make sure all the information was correct on it and all is in order. (I'm keeping my hopes up is all I am saying.)
I also took new photos of my most recent art work, edited them, and uploaded them to my website. Now everything is online, except for one work that I need to make a jig for so I can photograph it standing upright in the photo booth. I always feel awesome after uploading new works because they finally feel official and complete. I give them a new life when they are online and free to be viewed by the masses.
Speaking of the masses, later next fall I will be hosting with the help of two of my fellow grads an exhibition of student work as the Fall 2016 opening show...maybe. Originally the two woman team, myself and Jessamy had a harebrained idea to put together and exhibition outside the school (like any good young artist should). And that has now turned into a full scale operation more or less. We've met with the Downtown Statesboro Development Authority board committee and have been approved to hold pop up shows around the city free of charge. And we are learning along the way, the very bumpy way, how to curate and create call for entires, and run things. I can see it being a really great gig if the two of us can keep the harpies (the other grads) at bay long enough to get the bone structure of the idea in place. I want to involve the entire graduate team, but lets face it-we all know that the world is made up of different types of people. Some want all the glory for themselves, some want to have nothing to do with anything, some are leaders and team players, and others just want to ride along and get credit. I'd say most of the graduate group just wants the credit without the work. Which is way they were left out of the original Go Team in the first place. All of this though...the planning, the emails, discussion with professors, and learning how to communicate without excluding, offending, or over-committing has been eye opening for myself, and I'm sure for my friend Jessamy too.
I just need to learn that most people are not like me. It drives me nuts when applications roll by and no one applies, but then they are offended when they don't win. I think it is kind of obvious that I'm an overachiever, I know that. I stand by it. It doesn't bother me one bit when I get told to slow down, take it easy, or don't rush things. That's why I am going places, getting things done, and making things happen. Here in school is the perfect time for this type of attitude. I know that "no one likes an overachiever" but until I get to the point where I don't have to beat my competition I'll probably stay this way. It's just who I am at this point in time.
Sorry for the long blog post-but that's whats been happening. I haven't done much other than prepare for the end...metaphorically that is. I've still got plans to get up to Atlanta and gallery hop. There's a lot of great shows happening at the beginning of June that can't wait to see. I'll keep everyone informed over the summer too with continued blogs about life, school, and most importantly Ireland. This may be my last MFA Assignment Blog post of the semester. I'm not sure yet. Next week will tell I suppose!