Monday, February 25, 2008

Elephant painting

The link below is to Komar and Melamid's work with elephants. A friend has an original painting from them. I love it. Click below:
Komar and Melamid's work with elephants and painting

South African Elephants

This article makes me sad.
South Africa has overturned the ban on killing its elephant population. Since 1995 the elephant population in Southern Africa has grown to over 20,000 since the country banned elephant killing. Now it seems that number is too high, and the ban has been reversed.

I'm not sure what's wrong with this world, but it seems like a lot these days. See the link below:


Friday, February 22, 2008


Somehow this makes me think of Duchamp. I want to use that red phone to call him. Maybe he'll call me.

William Kentridge

Donald Judd

Donald Judd's house in SoHo.
Opening to the public soon

Edith Piaf

meaning cleaning blog

Our blog is born


Monday, February 18, 2008

MeaningCleaning Thursday

Hello again,

Hayley and I are going to be collaborating on another MeaningCleaning performance this Thursday February 21 and would like to have it documented by way of photographs and/or video.

We want to concentrate on cleaning, but know it's important to have visual documentation of the work.

If you are able, and interested in participating, by taking photos or shooting a video as a curious"passerby", please let me know before Thursday.

Location TBD, either 51st street station of the 6 train (underpass to E train), or Fulton Street station of A train in Manhattan.

Thank you,
Angela Rose


Looks like someone needs to go to the Office of Blame and Accountability.

How insulting. I think I just started my boycott of Gristedes


On Sunday I woke up and was open to whatever the day was going to bring me. I left the apartment with no plan of activities in my head at all. I walked by the job site, and the tree was still alive, and our cornice had been installed and it looked absolutely amazing. I was happy.

I took the bus to studio and realized the show WACK must have opened at PS1 so I decided to go. I didn't realize it was the opening day, and that I was one of the first 100 people in the museum. How exciting! The show blew me away. I felt like I was at a family reunion, re-visiting aunties, older ancestors, cousins, and mothers. It was very well curated...I hope the curators learned from the felt like they did in terms of gathering artists together, leading the viewer from area to area.

I was interviewed for a Documentary by PS1 about the show. That was interesting. There were hours of video I have to go back to see, many pieces of work I have to re-visit and many others I have to learn about and then re-look at.

It was such an inspiring and totally unexpected day for me! My heart felt so full. The only thing I didn't like was that one could not take photographs of the work. Why the hell not? I thought. I wish I could post some images here. But Tereza if you are here when the show is here, you must go. It's amazing.

Rauchenberg's last day

Saturday started off with my getting a massage from a very dear colleague. It was one of the best treatments I've ever received from her. After that I was going to see the Kentridge show again, but then ran out of time...I had a wake to attend for a friend's father who had unexpectedly died the week before.

I grew up with this family, and it was hard to be at another funeral for another one of them: my friend died a few years ago, and now her father died. The wake or service was thankfully full of life, as there were many many new babies, lots of family and friends from the neighborhood in attendance.

But my mother and I were very very sad.

After the funeral home, I decided to see Rauchenberg's "runts" show in Chelsea. After all, the funeral home was only 10 blocks away, and Alex Mennella was the kind of person to deal with his feelings, but then move on into something artistic, positive, and real. I think he would have gone to see Rauchenberg too. So, with him in mind, I walked up to 25th street. I'm so glad I did.

I was so glad to see new Rauchenberg work! It took me a little while to absorb his energy. But the way he makes his works resonates even now. I'm so glad he's still making his work.

After Rauchenberg I also stopped in to say hi to another gallery, and ended with Shirin Nashat at Gladstone. Her work also blew me away in a much different way. We are so brutal to each other as human beings; her work has such a human quality, very intimate. Also very sad.

On the way home I broke down publicly, unable to contain my emotion. Thankfully the sun had already set, and I was alone on the streets walking back to the apartment. But dealing with death again doesn't get easier, even if it is because of natural causes (finally).

When I got home I started embroidery again on the pillow case, thinking about the last things one thinks about before going to sleep. Channeling Lisa Brice's work in a less violent way. The people we live with came home and we had a nice dinner together. I didn't realize my mascara was all over my face from crying on the way home. They were polite enough not to mention it.

American R*evolution

Friday night saw the opening of American R*evolution at the Junto Gallery in Brooklyn, NY. I was fortunate enough to have been invited to show. I decided to go into more depth with the Airing Dirty Laundry piece, making the slips of paper a bit more refined and working with the implications of the piece in a bit more detail.

And since it's an election year, the choice to use the symbol of a ballot box was an easy one (considering the title of the show as well)

The participatory aspect of Airing Dirty Laundry made its NYC debut. Many people cast their ballots in the ballot box. As far as I could tell, everyone loved the prize aspect of keeping the "Do No Harm" pencils. Some ballots could be read, some could not. I feel it was a success. I overcame my initial stage fright and actually felt at home at the opening. I felt myself again. This is indeed what I should be doing.

Installation view, kindly created by the show's curator, Hayato. He chose the best place for it, and made it very accessible for the viewer to become a participant.

I was actually pleasantly surprised that some of the people I invited did make it out to the opening. To be honest I've not been in practice with this sort of thing, but the feelings quickly came back.

I received a lot of interesting ideas from participants and colleagues. This week can be a follow up week...exciting how art continues art continues art. yay

A New Hope

As it turns out, Keyspan probably didn't kill my street tree, as per two nurseries I consulted.

And the landscaper they hired to repave the sidewalk is going to landscape the tree pit to make up for the cobblestone loss.

But this remains to be seen, as neither Keyspan or the landscaping company was on site today.

And the tree is still alive, stakes in the ground. I hope it makes it.

Thursday, February 14, 2008

A letter to KeySpan

Below, a letter to KeySpan, edited (not originally intended for public view).
This is part of what I got to do today, someone else's job!!
I just love doing everyone else's work. It makes me feel productive.





To Whom It May Concern:

Today, Keyspan began digging sidewalk trenches on my property and destroyed the street tree, I had recently planted there. The work being done by Keyspan also damaged the tree pit itself, cobblestones, stakes and soil.

The property is a vacant lot and I do not have a Keyspan account.

The street tree’s inspection by the NYC Parks Department was scheduled for next week (w/o February 18, 2008) and now has to be re-scheduled to allow for repurchasing of all materials including a new tree, and replanting the tree.

This letter officially requests reimbursement for all monetary losses related to street tree damaged caused by trench digging by Keyspan.

I have already faxed your office photo documentation of damage to the tree pit, stakes, cobblestones, and tree itself.

I request a reimbursement for the following:
the cost of the tree
organic soil
the cost of cutting the tree pit itself
In total, the amount =

Please remit payment to the following address:

Angela Illgen

If your office has any questions or comments regarding the above claim, please do not hesitate to contact me at the number listed above.

Thank you,

Angela Illgen

More tree news

KeySpan's communication about ripping a 30' trench in my sidewalk was not as good as it could be. Basically, I got no warning; I just arrived on site today and found this work being done. I love being responsible for paying taxes for the sidewalk, and KeySpan gets to rip it up whenever it wants! I feel so bad for my little street tree. It's so small, but thankfully dormant, and will maybe live. The folks at the Chelsea Garden Center were very helpful and encouraging. I guess I know what I'm doing tomorrow!

What a lovely trench. I just looove that it borders the interior border of my tree pit, allowing all the organic soil to just blend in with the rest of the toxic dirt of Williamsburg. Lovely.

In addition to documenting my work and confronting 10 years of process, seeing my work through a very different lens, I arrive to say good morning to my street tree today and KeySpan is trenching the sidewalk and basically killing my tree. Observe:

The most courteous of street trenchers, this kindly gentlemen assured me the tree would not be harmed further, that he "would do what he could" to save the tree. Ahh, the chivalry

The street tree, street view, with bulldozer. Doesn't "bulldozer" and "street tree" go really well together?

Another glorious view that greeted me this morning, just one week before Parks Department inspection! Yay!


Some images from work I've had around and have finally documented. Series taken from the book "The Status Seekers"...all titles of pieces are titles from that book. Insipid book from the 50's. Great fodder for work.

Who Can Be A Friend?

An Upsetting Era

The Sociology of Sex Appeal

Pecking Order

time, trouble, and worry

How is it that two perfectly creative, inspired women like ourselves contain so much anxiety, worry, fear, and self - doubt within us?

At the moment, my personal storm has passed, and I think it's important to discuss this panic, this fear, this uncertainty. It's troublesome.

I can't give any advise about your situation with your daughter because I'm not a mother...but I do think we choose our parents before we are born, and are ultimately independent of anything and anyone else in the world. It's a lonely existence. We are meant to let go.

But then doesn't that mean that what we let go of will eventually come back to one?

Many things are becoming clear to me. I've filed my work from the past ten years into a nice and neat flat filing cabinet. Am making my studio my own. I think I grew up in the last two weeks. Actually had a dream about running into a younger self and watching me/her walk right on by, clunky purple sandals and short lavender dress and all. I literally walked away from myself in my dream. I don't think one has to read too much into that dream...

And since then I've felt lighter, more responsible. Not exactly happier, but I realize there are no more escapisms for me. The world is plain. I am awake.

Here is a working statement

At various times of my life I have internalized the marginal positions that women have occupied in society as well as in art, and work with these inequities: body image double standards, female roles in society, and depictions of women in western art. I hope to challenge notions of “conventional wisdom” as they relate to gender stereotypes, and at the same time transform personal trauma by making it a more central aspect in my work.

Using a vocabulary of repetition, iconic female imagery, and text, I question the way the viewer relates to these images, to work in a way that subverts the male gaze. My aim is to be outside the hierarchical structure of “either/or” but rather give myself the choice of the more inclusive: “both/and”.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Dream, Work

Moments of Our Birth



Red Turban

I Stand By

Dear Lady, I'm trying to not only listen to the image but more so my feeling and respond from the painting itself paying attention each step of the way. So there is the conscious product of what I want but more importantly there is what is happening as it is happening (I'm trying to pay more attention to this.
I need to learn to sit still and listen at greater depth. (Off to Boston at the end of the week, will be thinking of you New Yorkers.)

Monday, February 11, 2008

Four Panic Attacks, Sleeping 5 hour or less and Terrified of Dying

I'm having a very hard time- too...

Realizing I am incredibly Attached to my daughter, of course that is how I initially wanted to parent, now things are changing and I am lagging desperately behind...

I am terrified of having to leave her- (or her leaving me)

Angela- you know what you want, go and do it- once you get there there is no there however. I am afraid (but I don't want to live in this fear- seeing a therapist this week on the subject.)

I have "finished" my current work- will post images soon. Angela, please send me your address- I have a couple of books for you.

I am processing everyday just like you- haging on to every moment, afraid of it all slipping away- (funny, I have erased myself from a painting the other day)

My love to you, hang in there- I will too

Friday, February 8, 2008

passing clouds

This probably doesn't help either I'm having a very hard time today.

I feel jealous
I feel defeated
I feel like I'm not a real artist
I feel like I still have so much opposition in my heart and in my head
I feel like I've missed my window
I feel like I give up on myself too easily
I never follow through on anything
I don't feel I'm living the life I want
I feel like an amateur
I feel like I don't know what I'm working with, what concepts I'm working on
I feel like I haven't found my thread yet that connects me with my work with my life

Thursday, February 7, 2008


Tereza what do you do when you imagine your work to be one way, but then in reality it is a different way?


more later,

Monday, February 4, 2008

Breathe, Meditate, Create Space

Saturday, February 2, 2008

Don't hyperventilate
Don't be so anxious
Don't overthink everything
Don't be so hard on yourself
Don't withdraw
Don't let the laundry pile up
Don't let the bills get out of hand
Don't let yourself "go"
Don't care so much what other people think
Don't leave the house without mascara
Don't forget to brush your teeth
Don't forget to work out
Don't forget to clean the studio
Don't forget to check everything off your list
Don't forget to call parents
Don't forget to make dinner
Don't let your guard down
Don't forget the breath mints