Monday, December 05, 2005

my visit to gramma's house

When i was in High School, i moved from a town in New Jersey, just outside of New York City, to a small town in the southwest corner of Virginia, just outside of nothing. i moved there because my grandparents retired to this town, and my mother figured, "what the hell?".

It was a gigantic culture shock as i knew NOTHING of the South that didn't come from the Dukes of Hazard and the Andy Griffith Show . I miserably spent my days in High School, then happily returned after College.

Happily, because i had learned to appreciate the south, and rurals areas. I went to college in Kentucky and took up hiking, camping, rock climbing and mountain biking. My town in Southwestern Virginia offered this in plenty. Also, i took work in the local theatre, the second oldest theatre in the nation. i soon grew tired and drained from the small town dullness.

i moved to dc 8 years ago almost to the day, and hadn't been to my old town in three years, since my grandfather died.

There are times when i thought that i might return to live there. i could have a huge studio and access to many resources. my overhead would be a fraction of the cost that it is here in DC. But i know for certain that i could never again call that town home.
For one, i never really felt that i belonged there. while i was very creatively charged there, it was always a formless and restlesss energy. I produced so much art work in the years i lived there, my experiences of life seemed very concentrated. But still, my work, and i, lacked direction.

secondly, i like diversity. i like hearing different languages durring my day, to have the opportunity to eat different foods, and to see peoples of vastly different lineages.

thirdly, too few museums.
and fourthly, i'd want to change it.

still, i know that i'll continue to daydream about converting an old tobacco warehouse into the coolest studio ever.

1 comment:

Stef said...

Did you see an article in the NYT recently about an artist couple that left NYC and moved to Staten Island in order to create a HUGE studio/gallery space? It's not quite the same as rural Virginia, but it sounds like they went through some of the same decisions that you're talking about. I can't remember their names, but the husband does huge works that really were best housed in a giant old loft/warehouse that they were able to get for cheap on Staten Island. Interesting article, probably still accessible in the arts section.