Following (and Reconciling) Different Artistic Currents with Catherine Coan
How is the residency going? Is it as you expected? Does the location inspire your progress?
Although your work as Writer-in-Residence here at the Beach House is solely focused on poetry and the art of writing, you’re also a noted visual artist. It might not be an unusual combination, to be both a poet and to work in another discipline, but the form that your artmaking takes is quite unusual.
When you look back at Oppenheim's famous teacup, in some way it seems like a progenitor to this genre. That piece seems to biomorphically evoke a whole animal in some way beyond what simply covering an object in fur “should” manage to do. Would you consider this to be hybrid taxidermy?
Your recent public event, "Cross-" gathered artists who juggle multiple disciplines - any insights stick with you?
The event brought together artists who I know go across genres to talk about how multiple directions feed their work - Mathieu writes poetry, prose, and children’s books; Cindy Rinne is a textile artist and poet; Sheree Winslow writes both memoir and flash fiction; Leslie Wood-Brown is an oil painter, printmaker and poet. I loved Mathieu’s idea (from David Bowie) about wading into the ocean past one’s comfort zone, where one can’t quite touch the sand below. That’s where the good stuff happens! How when you work in multiple disciplines you’re always working with impostor syndrome in some fashion, and being confronted with that provides an opportunity to improve. And I loved Leslie’s thoughts about mentorship, in particular for women... though regardless of gender, so often it’s just one word of affirmation… it’s all it takes for us as artists and writers to have the confidence to move forward.
Catherine has been working as the fall 2018 Writer-in-Residence at the Annenberg Community Beach House since October 17 and finishes up her tenure on December 19, 2018. She has been creating a new collection of poems, tentatively titled Mistakes Have Been Made. Her final weekly office hours are Mondays 12/3, 12/10 and 12/17 from 11am-2pm, and she presents one more public event on Tuesday, December 11 at 6:30pm – featuring a reading of new poems, live painting from Bert and music by Stephen Rowe and the Lonely Loners.