Spring Art Tour coming soon!

8ft chicken, Market Weight Studios, woodcuts, Great Pyrenees

Come see the 8ft chicken! The 8ft pulltoy pig! And lots more (including that Skip Johnson patriotic chicken in the foreground). Here are a few students from a visiting art class in front of Market Weight Press Studios

Now in it’s 7th year, the Spring Art Tour features 20 artists who will open their studios to the public June 7, 8, 9 (Friday, Saturday, Sunday), 10-5 daily.

**NOTE: Sue will be in studio daily 10-5, EXCEPT Saturday absent 3:30-5p

S.V. Medaris’ studio will have printing demos, prints (unframed and framed), cards, pillows, t-shirts and more for sale. She is currently carving the first in a new series of Alphonse Mucha poster-inspired prints, as well as a 4ft hog woodcut, a flying (sort of) chicken linocut, and block-printing pillow covers, t-shirts and ? Lots of fun stuff.

Maps, artist profiles and more at the Mount Horeb Spring Art Tour site.

This Saturday night: Farm to Fork (to Fabulous!)

Opening reception Saturday, March 16, 7-10pm.

Showing with my friend and fellow artist Alicia Rheal in our From Farm to Fork (to Fabulous!) exhibit. The opening reception is a gala celebration and benefit for the Walls of Wittenberg. More info, and the poster, below. Highlight? Why Nueske’s Applewood Smoked Meats of course.

Poster for 'Farm to Fork (to Fabulous)' show, featuring artwork of S.V. Medaris and Alicia Rheal

This is going to be a really fun (and delicious) opening reception! (Click on poster to enlarge) And, if you drive up early, you can visit Nueske’s Company Store in Wittenberg (Sat. hours: 8-4).

The WowSpace is located at 114 Vinal St – Wittenberg, WI. Easy to find…Just look for the 8ft hanging hog carcasses and the giant pull-toy pig (cuts) in the front windows along the main street of downtown Wittenberg!

And here’s more info about the Walls of Wittenberg ongoing mural project.

One section of the wall installed for now….

Installing…. That’s an 18ft long Hampshire stud boar on right (the model, Pioneer is owned by Monson Show Pigs in Richland Center). And that’s an 8ft pull-toy pig in front window.

The Tunnel of Mortality

The Tunnel of Mortality, a life-size tunnel-book installation at Artisan Gallery, has been extended to September 9th, 2012! The next reception is Friday, July 27, 2012, 5-9pm at Artisan Gallery.

Here’s some shots (click any image to enlarge):

Door's entrance to old cheese cooler with show title: S.V. Medaris, The Tunnel of Mortality, inside reveals dark, wallpapered room.

“Come in.” said the spider to the fly….

Once you step in the door, you are in a floor-to-ceiling, darkly wallpapered, little anteroom, about 8ft x 8ft.

fancy-framed portraits on dark wallpapered walls

Back wall and right corner of anteroom

ornate wallpaper, fancy-framed portraits

Chairs are upholstered in the same, matching, printed fabric as the walls.

The richly detailed wallpaper is actually a 10in x 10in linocut pattern printed black onto burgundy duckcloth. About 480 times. If you look closely at one of the “tiles” you will see the underlying theme of the show:
plucked chicken, intestines, bones, axes, chicken foot...

If you look behind you to your right, the outside light looks blinding compared to the dramatic low lighting surrounding you.

taxidermied chicken on low table next to portrait hung on densely patterned wallpapered wall

Taxidermy chicken NOT for sale.

As you step through the door, into the anteroom, The Tunnel of Mortality is that big framed piece on the right-hand wall. It looks like any other of the framed woodcuts, except as you walk towards or by it, it changes (since it’s a 3-dimensional space, not a flat piece). If you’re not paying attention though, it doesn’t “read” as an interior space, but rather a mirror…or something. A number of visitors were looking behind and above them to figure out where the projector was. Most think it’s a mirror, but can’t figure out how come they don’t see their reflection.

Fancy framed portraits on dark wallpapered walls, and low table covered in matching tablecloth

Matching tablecloth and upholstery! This is really the only time I’ve gotten into “interior decorating” (in our real house, nothing matches. I mean, who has time when it takes this long to make pretend rooms?).

Walk into the center of the room, turn to your right, and there’s the tunnel.

fancy frame contains busy collage of farm animals and farm life

The Tunnel of Mortality, framed.

I’m not going to try to explain how this looks in real life, since you really have to go experience it to get it. Suffice it to say, that it’s confusing at first since you can’t quite tell what you’re looking at. Some have said it feels like a mirror.

And here’s a cropped panorama of the center section:

scene filled with relief-printed farm animals, carcasses and scenes of farm life

All woodcut or linocut prints on fabric or Tyvek.

Reception is this Friday, 5-9pm at Artisan Gallery (directions).
And the show is up through September 9th.

So, come check it out!
Experience the tunnel!
Sign the camouflaged guestbook!
Read some of the entries in the guestbook here.

cloth-covered book matches pattern of tablecloth

Tunnel of Mortality (and much more) Friday night!

Install, day 3 at Artisan Gallery
(Day 3 of the install)

Artisan Gallery 25th Anniversary Exhibition
June 8th – July 22nd, 2012
Opening Reception Friday June 8th 5-9p.m.

Group Show: 25th anniversary — We are excited to celebrate our 25th year in Paoli, the anniversary show will feature favorite work from many of our gallery artists.

In the Cooler: S.V. Medaris “The Tunnel of Mortality” — Printmaking from birth to slaughter and everything in-between. One season of life on the farm (in life-size tunnel book form), as told by S.V. Medaris of Market Weight Press.

Nick Wroblewski: Color Reduction Woodcuts — Wroblewski’s woodcuts entice the viewer through the use of vivid colors and hold their attention through his variety of distinct mark making. This exhibit will have many prints which showcase his unique style of reduction woodcuts.

More info at Artisan’s Facebook page and
Artisan Gallery website

Defrosting a frozen turkey

I get asked every year about how long to defrost a turkey. Not because I’m a noted cook, but because I raise turkeys for meat (so, I’m not an expert). When it’s a food safety issue, the first place I look is the USDA. So, here’s the answer straight from the USDA–you should find everything you’re looking for (and more) at this link:

USDA Seasonal Food Safety (Countdown to Thanksgiving…)

I’ve copied/pasted some of the basics from that above link here:

Most importantly for those of you who don’t cook much:
Never defrost your turkey at room temperature.

NOTE: I’ve often defrosted with both the refrigerator and the “cold water” method (at the end of defrosting period) for those monstrously huge turkeys. Anyway, here’s the basics (from the USDA):

Place frozen bird in original wrapper in the refrigerator (40 °F or below). Allow approximately 24 hours per 4 to 5 pounds of turkey. A thawed turkey can remain in the refrigerator for 1-2 days.
Thawing Time in the Refrigerator
Size of Turkey: Number of Days
4 to 12 pounds: 1 to 3 days
12 to 16 pounds: 3 to 4 days
16 to 20 pounds: 4 to 5 days
20 to 24 pounds: 5 to 6 days

If you forget to thaw the turkey or don’t have room in the refrigerator for thawing, don’t panic. You can submerge the turkey in cold water and change the water every 30 minutes. Allow about 30 minutes defrosting time per pound of turkey. The following times are suggested for thawing turkey in water. Cook immediately after thawing.
Thawing Time in Cold Water
Size of Turkey: Hours to Defrost
4 to 12 poundS: 2 to 6 hours
12 to 16 pounds: 6 to 8 hours
16 to 20 pounds: 8 to 10 hours
20 to 24 pounds: 10 to 12 hours

Read more:USDA Seasonal Food Safety (Countdown to Thanksgiving…)

Hope this helps Mom! ;-)

And now they are meat…

Took in the last of the season’s harvest this morn (turkeys and broiler chickens). This year (as in years past) we drove them to Twin Cities Pack in Clinton, WI (near Janesville). We left about 4:30am and got there at 6am. I pick the (frozen) birds up tomorrow! I did save behind 3 of these “super chicks” from the batch of broilers. They are from a shipment of chicks that were sent in June and arrived with many dead. Amid the sad bunch of dead babies were these 3 super chicks that acted like nothing was wrong–peeping loudly demanding water and food. I figure after that, they are meant for something else–maybe they’ll be good breeding stock for more meat birds?

hanging carcasses made from woodcuts adhered to polysterene

Carcasses from 'The Meat Locker' (click to enlarge)

At any rate, they earned it. Let’s hope they are fertile and can lay some eggs. If not, oh well, they are a good addition to the bunch–calm, big, personable girls. And they’re not pecky. Instead, if they don’t want somebody near, they stand up tall, poof out their chest and neck feathers making themselves huge, and the wee little pesky polish (crested) turn tail and run.

Also picking up meat–pork– from Avon Locker Plant over in Darlington, tomorrow. I love this place–best meat processor around (and yes, we tried the others nearby). Incidentally, these are the guys that let me take photos of my hogs when they (as carcasses) were hanging in the freezer. And from which I made some 8ft woodcut of the carcasses. And who (the woodcut carcasses) then made it into a NYC show! Still can’t believe it. Awesome hogs (from feeder pigs I bought from Monson Show Pigs). Awesome carcasses courtesy of Avon Locker Plant.