“The things you think about determine the quality of your mind” -Marcus Aurelius

It seems like such a simple prospect, the things we fill our minds with determine the quality of our lives. But for many of us, our days are punctuated by cluttered minds and scattered thoughts. We are constantly inundated with imagery and input, so much so that it sometimes feels impossible to take control of our own minds. We have the power to restructure our own thinking. We can choose to tame our thoughts, step onto a path of mindful thinking, and quiet our chaotic minds.

Michelle Segre is a Brooklyn-based artist and teacher. Segre is primarily a sculptor who works with yarn, papier mache, and has recently begun incorporating dried organic materials. She currently has a solo show at Derek Eller Gallery where she has been exhibiting since 2004. For her first show for the gallery she created a series of drawings which she describes as “intricate networks of marks.” In the ensuing years, her sculptures have begun to mimic this style in their intricacy of lines. Segre formerly sculpted large objects out of beeswax. She says she is always on the lookout for sculptural materials including natural items and found objects. Of her work, Segre says the dissection of space plays a role. “I’m imagining space as interacting planes,” she says, going on to describe the organic inclusions as indicative of time and a “past DNA.”

Eva Grubinger is a sculptor who works with everyday objects, altering and rescaling them to attract notice. Seafaring has played a large role in her work, the juxtaposition of the desire to seek adventure and to seek safety. This contradiction informs her sculptures. Recently, light has begun to factor into her work. Grubinger uses quinine to create fluorescence in her sculptures. In one piece, Schnapps bottles containing scorpions fluoresce because the scorpions themselves contain a natural quinine which glows under blacklight. One of Grubinger’s works, known as Hedgehog rests high up in the Austrian Alps in an area where fascists took up residence during World War II. In order to break down the difficult history of the area, Grubinger and others created a public space where Hedgehog now resides.

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Interviews are available on iTunes as podcasts, and for Android please click here. All weekly essay pieces in a sharable format are here. The full archive of interviews here.

Books to Read

What are you reading? Add your titles to our reading list here. User Susan Ashley has been involved in The Voices Within: the History and Science of how We Talk to Ourselves by Charles Fernyhough and Jane E. Miller recommends Restoration and Merivel by Rose Tremain

Opportunities / Open Calls

Blooom Award invites artists around the world who are 18 years of age or older to apply for their year-long mentorship and arts prize. Winners are actively supported in their careers including mentorship under one of the jury members. Artists are also sent to Art Basel in Miami or Hong Kong and given a generous spending stipend. At the culmination of the year-long journey, all ten finalists are eligible to exhibit at the BLOOOM art show in Germany. Deadline for submissions is July 31.

A Few Words to Keep in your Pocket

Each of us chooses the contents of our own heads to some extent. While there may be pieces outside our control, we can strive toward mindful thinking and, in so doing alter the quality of our mind.

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Additional Reading / Resources below.

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Deadlines for Artist Opportunities

Weekly Edited Grant and Residency Deadlines - review the list here.

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More Resources - For Artists Only - (weekly articles)

Name Your Idols -- Read more here

Popular Writings -

Non-profit spaces to know -

London, UK Non-Profit Spaces - read about some of the best.

Los Angeles, CA Non-Profit Spaces- read about some of the best.

New York City Non-Profit Spaces - read about some of the best.

Self Illumination -

Conquering Fear - read about methods and Pema Chodron.

The Trap of Self-Esteem and How to Break Free- read more here.

F*ck the Art World, F*ck Consumerism! - read more here.

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