Workshop: Expanding Sensual Connections Through Mark-Making, at Anavami Center-Majio
July 31 Saturday 9-12 & 1-4 $150 in studio & $90 on Zoom.
What does sensuality have in common with marking, you may well ask. This is the way I see it. When I talk about sensual, I mean the senses. It is not sexuality, which is a semantic overlay in our culture. In this vein Qabalah says that we live in an erotic universe, a universe that connects and exchanges through the senses. We are sensual beings and explore the edges of our senses as we expand our association and comprehension of ourselves and our universe. We all know the subtlety of hearing and touch that someone who is blind or with hearing loss can develop. Most of us have had experiences of heightened sensitivities from drugs or naturally, that have altered radically what we perceive. And those of you who have ventured into tantric sex know that our bodies can be much more alive with sensitivity than they are. We live in a narrow tunnel of what we are capable of feeling. Let’s open that up!
Our senses are essentially giving us information. As with light and sound the spectrum goes beyond with what we physically and habitually engage. Something that has always interested me is the condition of synesthesia, where the sense impression relating to one sense or part of the body stimulates another sense or part of the body. That is to say, you can smell a song or see colors as you touch someone. 1 in 300 people are said to have some version of this condition. We learned as children to filter out the information that is not experienced by those around us. This workshop is a practice in opening-up our senses, our sensitivity, and thus our perceptions. Mark-making can help us to do this.
Mark-making is a broad description of anything that leaves a residue from pressure or movement. It can be non-perceivable marks like words, a sunset, or any experience. Trauma is a kind of marking, as is delight and awe. When we enter consciously into mark-making it becomes a conduit for feeling sensations, connection, information as we mark. It is really a conversation beyond what most of us have cultivated. This workshop will endeavor to play with extending our sense in relation to marking, not so much for our expression, but more to expand our engagement in collaboration with the life around us and through us.
Whether on Zoom or in the studio, participants will be invited to bring something over-the-top delicious to eat and also something that is repugnant. You will also have handy some surfaces to feel, like fur, silk, something rough, grainy, slick. We will use marking not to duplicate or portray the experience but to connect and explore the sensations. We will mark not as the sole creative agent but in collaboration with all that is around us in a mutual exchange of learning, information and expansion of perspective.
We will be working on printing or watercolor paper, 22” X 30” with tissue paper and water-soluble marking implements. As an aspect of artistic process, we have found with this marking work there is a synchronicity called forward with themes and issues that are personally pertinent. It is similar to dreaming in that the psyche knows how to integrate and nurture us if we are willing to play in a creative and generative way. Contact me if you have any questions.