“A poem should not mean, but be,” is the famous closing line of Archibald MacLeish’s poem, “Ars Poetica.” That’s the way Baton Rouge artist Billie Bourgeois approaches her work. “There’s no heavy symbolism here. What you see is what you get,” she says of her paintings and prints.
What you get is pure bright pigment in Bourgeois’ encaustic monoprints that feel as sunny and hopeful as the New Year. Bourgeois draws with melting squares of pure color trapped in beeswax and resin on a heated aluminum plate. As the color flows, she creates an abstract drawing which she captures by laying a sheet of Japanese paper over it, sealing a single, original print. Bourgeois loves the hot wax process. “Making the monoprints is really spontaneous and playful,” she says. “It’s fast. It’s a creative workout when you do it. It gets the blood pumping.”
Her latest series is titled Mark Making. A lot of the work is inspired by nature, particularly the Barataria Preserve below New Orleans, part of the Jean Lafitte National Park System. She is moved by the natural world, but not in making representational art. “I look for patterns, gestures in tree forms, and then when I draw, it’s like a dialogue between my eye and hand. I’m not interested in making a duplicate of what I see, more a responsive mark to my conversation with nature.”
Mark Making opens Saturday, Jan. 10, at 5:30 p.m., in conjunction with ArtWalk, at Galerie Eclaireuse, 535.5 Jefferson St. To see more of Bourgeois’ work, go to her Web site at www.billiebourgeois.com. Lafayette artist Mary Perrin will also be exhibiting her altered books at the opening. For more information, call the gallery at 234-5492.
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NOV 26 Zach Kopplin, who we came to know and love when he was a Louisiana high school student lobbying for the continued inclusion of science stuff in science class, pens this post in The Atlantic about a "textbook" available for social studies instruction in Texas that discusses how Moses contributed to the Constitution. (Oy! Texas rednecks love Jews. Who knew?)
NOV 26 Finally, mad people on the interwebz is a good thing! World wide webby outrage has caused the village of Moreauville to reverse its plan to confiscate pit bulls and Rottweillers and euthanize them simply because of their breed, WAFB reports here. The plan? They're going to enforce the leash law. Well, that would have been a good place to start.
NOV 26 Jim Brown, like many of us Louisiana voters, seems fed up with out of town know-it-alls trying to tell us what to do. Bill Cassidy can't make it through the day without flying someone in to "tell us political retards" how to vote, he says.
NOV 26 Blogger Tom Aswell is writing about the behavior of the two finalists in the 6th Congressional District race: Edwin Edwards and Garret Graves. Edwards has come out swinging, but Graves' campaign seems bent on snatching defeat from the jaws of victory, Tom says.
NOV 26 Unless you're in Virigina, you shouldn't count on seeing our Governor on Election Day. Mark Ballard writes in the Advocate's political blog that Bobby will be appearing at a GOP love fest of some kind there, instead of spending the day here.
NOV 26 This post on The Lens takes a look at the ongoing dispute in New Orleans over the banners about the upcoming tax election for the school system. The banners are hanging on schools, and some feel they are promotional, which is not allowed, instead of educational - which is allowed.
NOV 26 Not all college students are focused on football games and parties at this time of year. This post on DIG Baton Rouge recounts an LSU student group that tries to make sure that those who are hungry and homeless are not forgotten by those of us who aren't.
NOV 25 Edwin Edwards took off the gloves on Monday, this post on WAFB tells us. At a Press Club appearance, he wondered how his 6th Congressional District opponent, Garret Graves, could be an expert in all the areas in which he claims to be - when he has no college degree in anything. (Five years - FIVE YEARS - in college, but no degree. Huh?)
NOV 25 Blogger Mike Deshotels offers this primer on predatory charter schools and how they operate, specifically in Louisiana. They're not just profiting from our tax dollars, they're using children and shortchanging them to do so, Deshotels says.
NOV 25 Here's a link to the petition that has been created to save Zeus, a family dog who is targeted for death by the learned fathers of the Avoyelles Parish village of Moreauville. They passed an ordinance based on nothing that outlaws pit bulls and Rotweillers. As of Tuesday morning, the petition had more than 230,000 signatures - a number that's a wee bit higher than the village population of 929.
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