Early in June I attended the 17th International Surface Design Association Conference in San Antonio, Texas. I heard about the conference months earlier and was interested but not sure if it would be worthwhile for me. Then at an SDA meeting held in Calgary I sat next to fellow member, Wendy (Please note that I am making reference to the Surface Design Association and not Seventh-day Adventists, speed demos archive or small dead animals, as found on a Google search.) Wendy told me that she had attended a couple of SDA conferences and would not even consider missing one. That was enough of an endorsement for me. I went home and registered that evening, and then over the next couple of days convinced my good friend, Pamela, to come along. Best decision we could have made.
We arrived on a Tuesday evening, with plans to meet some Austin friends for dinner. We were expecting to start our SDA experience with a pre-conference tour on Wednesday. I checked the online schedule and discovered a lecture that we could attend, and heaven forbid that we should miss anything! After bumping our dinner reservations back, we headed off in search of the Southwest School of Art, Navarro Campus. It was only a few blocks from our hotel but we found ourselves on the main campus instead. Imagine our delight in finding this art installation, called “Interloper” by Trish Ramsay:
There were hundreds of these yellow felt balls on wire stems installed throughout numerous garden beds on the school grounds. They were playful and awe-inspiring at the same time. I decided to make my own tiny version at home. I used real flower head from an arrangement that had otherwise given up the ghost. Note loss of the wow factor – I had 6 flowers to work with.
As and addendum to these photos, I’m adding one from my trip to Vienna, where I spotted this window display:
Pamela and I found the correct building for the lecture given by Naomi Wanjiku Gakunga, titled “Unconventional Materials / African Heritage”. Naomi is not only a tremendously talented artist, she is a fabulous story-teller. We were completely wired/inspired by the time we heard about Naomi’s background and experiences that have influenced her work. What a fantastic way for us to start the conference! Naomi had a show in the same building. Here are a couple of images of Naomi and her incredible work.