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the garden is haunted

Wednesday, May 19th, 2010

These last couple of weeks have been chock full of art making and art shows…so much so that I missed the last two updates and for that I’m sorry. The Frank Strunk III show where I had 4 collaborative pieces went awesome. Three sold and one of them had to come off the wall as it was a birthday gift. I don’t even have a photo for you. We ended up making another piece to take it’s place which is where this week’s comic derives. I loved the haiku and concept so much and knew very few of my readers would see the actual art piece so I decided to make you a comic. Here are some photos of the original piece:

The Garden is Haunted
Calan Ree | Frank Strunk III


close up of the flowers i made with paperclay and twigs:


ghost cat


the haiku is on a distressed page from a medical dictionary. it has fish poisoning among the definitions. 😉


Here’s some photos of the other pieces we did.

I am frustrated that I don’t have a decent shot of this post-apocalyptic dancer piece. In person, it’s really moving. She was the star of the opening for sure. The title of the piece is a haiku (of course).

amid the debris
no audience can be found
the show must go on

Calan Ree | Frank Strunk III


It’s a pretty large piece and hard to see in a little photo. Here’s some close-ups of the dancer. I made her out of pods, paperclay and skeleton keys. Remember not long ago when I didn’t ‘get’ paperclay? I totally love it now!



Frank used wood, metal and fire and I used paperclay and paint. Together we made this bad ass music box which plays ‘the hills are alive…with the sound of music’. The hills are definitely not alive in her environment which made it the perfect choice!


‘This Shit is Bananas’
Calan Ree | Frank Strunk III


Calan Ree | Frank Strunk III


It’s hard to read the haiku in this blurry photo. It reads:

red bloom on cold stone
an act of acknowledgment
bones shiver and sigh

The other piece…well it’s gone and I didn’t get a photo. I think it might be going in to a local business though so perhaps I’ll get one at some point. If you are in the Tampa Bay area between now and the 29th of May, you can see the collaborative works along with Frank Strunk III’s solo works which combine metal and photography over at Kahwa Cafe South – 2nd Avenue S and 2nd Street, downtown St. Pete.

In addition, to the Strunk show I also participated in Art Rock in West Palm Beach. I made this new art doll for the show. Her name was Helga and our time together was brief. She went home with a nice lady who insisted on buying her. I was debating keeping her for myself because I really loved her expressive face. I can see that art dolls are going to be hard for me to part with. It’s not the same as a painting or cool illustrated jewelry piece. These little creatures really feel like a part of me and it’s weird to hand them off to someone else and never see them again. The zombie finger puppets are gone too. Once again, I’m really grateful for the support and interest in my work, but yeah, it was hard to say good bye to those two.

Here’s Helga. Her hair smelled like cloves.



So that’s what I’ve been up to. Two art shows plus the jewelry making, graphic design stuff I do regularly wiped me out. Things will settle down now a bit. I have one more small art fair this weekend and then I’m going to relax…maybe. I do have this project in mind….

This Sunday, you’ll find me selling stuff and fanning myself on the porch here:


<3 Calan

11 Responses to “the garden is haunted”

  1. Amanda Says:

    the dolls are so lovely. the hours you’ve put into them make them more like little art children than the jewelry. When i made my sock dolls i couldn’t part with them i still have them even though most of them are in storage.

  2. calan Says:

    thanks Amanda. your sock dolls sound interesting. i saw this book recently on how to make all sorts of dolls out of socks – other than sock monkeys – and they had so much personality and can be so wonky and adorable i thought about making some myself. i don’t sew though…not for about a zillion years. i’m going to have to re-learn that skill i think before i get into anything plush. even for my clay dolls it would be nice. presently i sort of fold and glue in to place if i want fabric on them.

  3. Jim Says:

    Chasing ghost field mice
    From little bunny foo foo
    Makes ghost cat happy

    You ROCK Calan!

  4. calan Says:


  5. Heinrich Says:

    “shit is bananas”
    sounds like a lot of my life
    i like the cat too.

  6. Seraphine Says:

    dancer thrusts her arm
    onto the stage like a key
    turning the applause

    the curtain rises
    nervous laughter ripples through
    as house lights turn low

    shadow follows her
    as she turns the cylinder
    and begins to dance

    dance dance she dances
    to an odd-tinny music
    on legs made of wire

    clicks across the floor
    pirouette à la seconde
    as graceful as rust

  7. Seraphine Says:

    helga is beautiful i know it was difficult for you to let her go
    she would have been difficult to live with you see
    i know her type an opinion on everything as if having
    skinny legs was a right rather than accident of birth and
    eyes that would bore through you if you dared to stare
    the constricted throat mistaken for a symptom of love
    she was glad to go stick figure hearts have no room to breathe
    you see she was demanding and difficult, if not beautiful

  8. calan Says:

    you know what else is beautiful Sera? your writing.

  9. Seraphine Says:

    i’m a real fan of your dolls (can you tell?) you are getting better and better at them, they are true works of art.

  10. calan Says:

    thank you. i feel like these creations have been trying to surface for ages and clay is the perfect outlet. i’m feeling my way around some different types of clay, etc. but i’m certain this direction is exactly what i have to do…it’s kind of wonderful and satisfying and exciting and stuff. 😀

  11. coraline Says:

    thts really kool how do you make those things? really, id like to see some of your peices of art in the museum 🙂

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