Thursday, 23 February 2017

The Box Project...

...is done, and ready for the show happening the first weekend in March here in Creston, BC, Canada.


'Valley Fortune' will join a host of other pieces, in disciplines ranging from drama, music, poetry and more.  I've included a description of the evolution of Valley Fortune  at the bottom of this post, so you can perhaps understand how and why this particular format came into being.  You can find the parameters for the 'Call' at the end of my previous post in case you're just coming in on this story.

Here are the boxes I've prepared for the show in no particular order:

Berrylicious, exterior approx. 4" square x 1 1/2" deep, created in a disused wooden box

Berrylicious, interior and contents

Grape Dance exterior, approx 3" x 4" x 2' deep, created in a Gelli-printed paper box

Grape Dance, interior and contents

Heritage Tomatoes exterior, approximately 6 1/2" x 7" x 2 1/2" deep, created in a cigar box 

Heritage Tomatoes, interior and contents

Man and Machine, exterior, approximately 6" x 3 1/2" x 3" deep, created in a disused wooden box

Man and Machine, interior and contents

Nuts to You, exterior, about 2" cubed, created in a painted paper box

Nuts to You, interior and contents

Orchard exterior, approximately 3" x 4" x 2" deep, created in a Gelli-printed paper box

Orchard interior and contents

Red Delicious exterior, approximately 7" x 2" x 2 1/2" deep, created in a cigar box

Red Delicious interior and contents

Red Hot Pepper exterior, approximately 3 1/4" x 4 3/4" x 2" deep, created in a disused wooden box

Red Hot Pepper interior and contents

Valley Fortune carrying case for all eight boxes


Valley Fortune

Designed for Call & Response 2017 - ‘The Box Project’
February, 2017
Medium:  Mixed Media/Acrylic

The ‘Call’ to this particular project had me at the sight of the guitar pick, fashioned from a credit card that secured my secret note, along with the delightful fortune cookie.  They took me immediately to the concept of abundance, an ongoing mind-meandering of mine for the last five decades or so. 

We are geared to consider abundance in the form of money and possessions, and I’ve been considering other forms particularly around family, moral values, surroundings, community, and our daily bread.  How fortunate, then, that we were asked to consider whether we could incorporate the Canada 150 theme of the local ‘Full Plate’ committee.  The raw potato in my box was yet another catalyst.

We live in a community that is bound to the fertile land and moderate climate which makes the growing of fruit, vegetables and other foods such a strong focus. For the last ten years, I’ve been reveling in the local bounty of fresh fruit, dairy products, nuts, berries, and vegetables, and couldn’t wait to work on a project that incorporated some of these in a visual way.  Each of the eight boxes (Berrylicious, Nuts to You, Man & Machine, Red Delicious, In the Orchard, Heritage Tomatoes, Grape Dance and Red Hot Peppers) in the Valley Fortune box includes the following:


-  A photograph or two (most taken by myself, with a contribution in Man & Machine by husband John, and       an outright steal from the net when I couldn’t find a source for the Red Delicious apple photo I coveted)
·         -  A recipe related to the subject
·         -  A poem (Could it really be twenty five years since I’ve attempted poetry writing?  Yes it could.)
·         -  A coin (gifted by world travelers, and relating both to the abundance factor of money earned and spent, as    well as to the fact that much of what is produced in the valley goes out into the world)
·         -  A three-dimensional piece, either a found object or crafted from paper mache 
·        -   A ‘fortune cookie’ fortune

One of the concepts I like to incorporate in my work is that of the 4 R’s – reduce, reuse, recycle and repurpose.  You’ll find a wide range of these items in this project; from a cardboard box, dryer sheets used to mop up paint, left-over painted papers, reclaimed buttons, credit card guitar picks, wine and beer bottle caps I’ve reused to the maximum.  Many of these items have been found in Gleaners, another area of abundance in this wonderful valley.  The repurposing that is done through Gleaners is a massive boon to the locals and we are indeed lucky to have such a large number of volunteers involved.

26 comments:

  1. Your boxes are super Win and fit the Full Plate theme so well. It sounds like this Call and Response has been a very interesting challenge.

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    1. Many thanks, Val - I'm really excited to see/hear/experience the rest of the entries...imagine the variety!

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  2. These are yummy inside out and there are so many of them!

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    1. Thanks, Zsuzsa - I'm pleased with the array of boxes I was able to compile in such a short timespan. Were I to do it again, I'd be working with crates to signify the crates of produce that go out into the world from this lush and bountiful area.

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  3. Amazing boxes ! What a fantastic project! I am thrilled about that!

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    1. Thanks, Susi - it was very much a labour of love for all the bounty in this valley.

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  4. It never ceases to amaze me the projects that you create and or are involved in. I have declared you Art Super Woman you are my hands on art inspiration.
    Also as a fellow fan of Downton Abbey and all things Nineteenth century, I too frequently find myself thinking of the downstairs crew and the poor coach driver sitting for hours in the rain & snow. I often wonder how so many people could and can be so thoughtless and uncaring, myself included. And just how much more, more do I need. Your artwork is another reminder that where much is given much is expected...thanks.

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    1. What a lovely thing to say, Deann, given that I consider you MY Art Super Woman with your always-lush and inspirational blog posts. I love knowing, too, that you're a Downton fan (I doubt I'll ever recover from the end of the series!), with an awareness of the massive gap from the haves and have nots. It makes me glad to be living in a time and place where we are so fortunate, and gives me much empathy for those who have so much less.

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  5. Great collection of boxes Win, love them. Great to see how you've reused things too. Happy crafty weekend, Angela xXx

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    1. Thanks, Angela - it was definitely a fun project, and the mixture of box types really reminds me of the wide range of local foodstuffs. xo

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  6. What an abundance of creativity, Win! Just love those boxes, each with its own character, and each representing a gift. And the sharing of recipes - another gift and abundance we should tap into more. With all these riches just from one artist, I'm sure the project will be amazing.

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    1. Thanks, Tracy - I'm very excited to see where the Muse will take all the other artists. Last year's presentation and show was a knockout!

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  7. What a sensational collection of boxes. You've done a ton of work on this project. The recipes are a wonderful idea. In orchard I learned how make pear butter - not that I'm planning to!
    Grateful to you for the frozen produce you gifted us with. In order to have them last I've been stingy with the portions so we can savour it all for longer. I've just thawed the last of of your cherries

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    1. It's hard for me to disconnect the orchards from the fruit they bring, and the testing of new recipes is a constant here. I can't imagine having tried to make fruit sherbet while living in a city! I'm delighted to hear you're enjoying the fruits of the vine and shrub...they brighten our winters immensely! xo

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  8. These are so cool, and they're all so different too. Blessings!

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    1. Thanks, Arnoldo. The Call & Response is such a great concept that it presses one to do something different!

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  9. Wow what an amazing project, the box covers are gorgeous and the contacts are so creative. You sound very busy, enjoy! Shirleyxx

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    1. Thanks, Shirley - it was definitely fun to conceptualize, never mind do, and always so much fun in the studio! xo

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  10. What a great selection of boxes !
    Corrie x

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    1. Thanks, Corrie - it a playtime time, choosing all those contents! xo

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  11. Win! I can't believe you made all 8 gorgeous boxes in such a short period of time! Well done you! I tried hard not to pick a fav ,because they are all splendid, but i must say, Heirloom Tomatoes is at the top of my list! These are all extraordinary! Best wishes on the show! xoxo

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    1. It was definitely a squish for time, Jackie, with the craziness of working some pieces in paper mache and then pushing the seldom-used poetry part of my brain. I like to Heritage Tomato box as well, although I think the Red Delicious one is my favourite (in this moment, at least! :D ). xo

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  12. Win these boxes are brilliant! Each one is intricate and so carefully thought out. You have put so much into these and it shows! Well done! I can't wait to see them in person.

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    1. Thanks, Laura - that was the fastest 'labour of love' from start to finish I've done - since last year's Call & Response challenge, anyway! :D

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  13. Oh my, oh my, oh my... I am just speechless Win. Dear me... these are absolutely INCREDIBLE. I have been back over your post four times now. I was trying to figure out which one was my favorite - but I gave up now because... any one of them is just FABULOUS. If I was there choosing just one - it would probably be man and machine since it's "ranchy"!! YOU ARE BEYOND WONDERFUL when you create. LOVE LOVE LOVE these. Xj.

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    1. Many thanks, Joi - it's funny; had I chosen one that's most 'you', I certainly would have chosen the Man and Machine box, and for the same reason you did. Your ranching 'genes' come to the fore! :D Glad you enjoyed these; they certainly have spurred some creative juices in this house!

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Thanks for your comments - I value every one!

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