Lynda Schlosberg

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Where the Process Creates the Answers
 


The Life of an Artist’s Studio

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There is a fascination with the artist’s studio—the sacred space where it all happens. But it isn’t always so mysterious and glamorous. At least for me it hasn’t been.

I’ve had five studios in five years. Each move brutally disrupted my creative process and impacted the resulting work, yet strengthened my resolve as a painter.

 

SPACIOUS BEGINNINGS

My first studio in Somerville, MA (2007).

 

I started with 600 square feet in a building with five other artists. I thought, “this is how it’s supposed to be!” But after ten months we lost the space. Our faulty landlord never turned the heat on. After a pipe burst and the Fire Department was called in, they shut the building down for a series of code violations. We were never let back in.

I was in the middle of graduate school and needed space immediately. So I moved into a storage unit I had in the basement of my home. It was an 85 square foot closet.

 

THE CLOSET

My second “closet” studio in the basement (2008).

 

Having my studio at home I could work more hours. What was lost in physical space was gained in more time.

It was in this compact space where my propensity for compressed mark making began. I produced a lot of work and after six months I was busting at the seams and going stir crazy.

 

DOUBLE WIDE

My third "expanded" studio in the basement (2008-2010).

 

After negotiating with my tenants, I knocked a wall down between our storage units and expanded my work area into 225 square feet. It wasn’t huge, but it was enough to spread out—as did my paintings; I finished my thesis work: three large 55 x 110-inch acrylic paintings on paper. (Matrix 3, Matrix 4, and Matrix 5.)

 

MOVIN’ ON UP

Into the light! My fourth studio in the upstairs apartment (2010-2011).

 

Over a year later my tenants moved out and I staked a claim in myself as an artist by not re-renting. I moved my studio into the upstairs unit with nearly 670 square feet spread over three rooms—and a big bay window with lots of natural light!

During my year in that space, I got ready for my first two solo shows. (Formlessness and Synthesisions.)

 

RE-COMPRESSION

My fourth studio compressed… (2011-2012).

 

After about a year money got tight; I needed rental income again but couldn’t force myself back into the basement—back into the dark. So I squeezed everything into the four rooms of my apartment.

It wreaked havoc on my art making. I quickly learned that my studio space requires physical separation from my day-to-day living.

 

MOVING OUT

My new fifth studio at Porter Mill (2012+).

 

I put my name on a waiting list for a studio. I got space within four months. Now I’m in 360 square feet in a building with 48 other artists and a two-year lease!

It’s taken a few months to get settled and serious work will begin this June. I am interested to see how this space will impact the work—stay tuned to find out!

 

Written by Lynda Schlosberg

May 21st, 2012 at 9:28 pm

Posted in Studio

3 Responses to 'The Life of an Artist’s Studio'

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  1. Lynda,

    I loved following along on your studio journey. Your newest one looks great–I’m a bit envious. I’m currently working in a converted dining room in the middle of my house. Lots of commotion and distractions!

    Kristina

    Kristina Wentzell

    31 May 12 at 7:49 am

  2. As they say, thanks for sharing. I am trying to get the courage to go down to the basement where 45% of what we moved from Texas to NH is still in boxes. But I have GOT to carve out a space for painting and encaustic… and, perhaps, just to be “alone.” I love my husband (and my cat).. but sometimes I only want to hear my own thoughts w/o TV, his music, or whatever. I already know I need a small space heater, fan and full spectrum light.

    Dana Whitney

    3 Nov 12 at 3:18 pm

  3. Good luck Dana! Since my studio is out of my house again (finally) I find that my work sessions are much more productive. No distractions, and more clear and concentrated focus. Every time I walk in the door it’s like a breath of fresh air! But I think, even carving a space out in your house separate from everything else is a huge help. The simple act of walking down some stairs and closing a door can be enough.

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