August 24, 2012 at 11:40 AM

Recycling on Home Turf

“Nancy Judd’s fashion plate is full…”

By Tom Maguire

Culture Vulture

Tom Maguire is a musician, arts supporter and a guy who travels the Southwest in a 13’ Scamp trailer, because he couldn’t figure out how the tent poles went together.

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Nancy Judd, our local recycled art artist, is usually so busy on the international environmental and art scenes that we don’t see enough of her at home. This fall will be a little different, as she has had lots to talk about in a recent press release.

In her release, artist Judd expressed her feeling of “pleasure to be spending so much time in my beautiful community.” Well, we are pleased also—actually thrilled. I have always been excited to see the national exposure and recognition Judd has had for the recycled art she produces, but it is also important to recognize her locally.

Here is a quick summary of recent and upcoming “Judd sightings”:

In August the New Mexico Committee of the National Museum of Women in the Arts honored Judd at their Women and Creativity luncheon. The audience was full of museum directors and curators, gallery owners, artists and people that support the arts in various ways.

One of Judd’s works, “Eco-Flamenco,” is in an exhibition at the New Mexico Museum of Art through September 7. For this un-traditional/traditional bata de cola, Judd transformed cereal boxes painted with recycled paint into cascades of ruffles for the train that contains more than 5,000 eco-pledges—commitments of actions that people will take to help the environment. The ruffles cover a dress made from parachute scraps. This dramatic dress took Judd 650 hours to create and was completed in 2011. It is part of the Museum’s Alcove Shows that can be traced back to the 1917 founding of the Art Gallery of the Museum of New Mexico.

As part of the Next Big Idea Festival in Los Alamos, Judd will be producing a Trash Fashion Contest on September 15. The Next Big Idea Festival is an event designed to inspire, illuminate and educate through science, technology and the arts.  And, on August 25, Judd will be giving two trash fashion workshops for both beginning and advanced students/artists. For information about the workshops contact Tom Nagawiecki at 505-662-8383.

On September 23, Judd will be giving workshops all day on transforming T-shirts into new styles and accessories at the first ever ABQ Mini Maker Faire. If you are not familiar with Maker Faires, they are the World’s Largest Show (and Tell) festivals—a family-friendly showcase of invention, creativity and resourcefulness, and a celebration of the Maker movement. It’s a place where people show what they are making, and share what they are learning. Makers range from tech enthusiasts to crafters, educators, tinkerers, hobbyists, engineers, artists, science clubs, students, authors and commercial exhibitors. Also, this event will be part of another, very cool event called the International Symposium on Electronic Art, ISEA2012 Albuquerque: Machine Wilderness which explores art, technology and nature.

Judd is also a part of TEDxAcequiaMadre at the University of Art & Design on November 3, which I covered in an earlier blog. Her talk is called: “Undressing the crime scene—addressing how to slow climate change”. In this talk the artist has said she will “describe how a dress can be an agent of change and will undress “Crime Scene,” which she describes as her “most provocative garment to-date.”

And, lastly (at least for now), Judd has announced a new project under a fellowship from Toyota and the Audubon Society called TogetherGreen. Over the next year she will create and institute an energy efficiency curriculum for 6th grade students in Santa Fe. The project will culminate in a new Recycle Runway garment that documents the amount of CO2 avoided by the students during their assignment.

I am really looking forward to these “Judd sightings” this fall and hope for many more in the future. Nancy: Santa Fe needs your talent and passion as much as anyplace.

Random thoughts

Having used “fashion plate” in the subtitle to this blog, I decided to find the origins of this often-used term, as I have a fascination with the usage of words and terms in our language (“You’ll have the Devil to pay?). This from Wikipedia: Fashion plate – an illustration (a plate) demonstrating the highlights of fashionable styles of clothing. Fashion plates are not depictions of specific people, but are instead generalized portraits, meant only to dictate the style of clothes that a tailor, dressmaker, or store could make or sell, or to show how different materials could be made up into clothes. Used figuratively, as is most often the case, the term is a reference to a person whose dress conforms to the latest fashions.

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