Monday, January 26, 2009

the first artsyville journal

today i unearthed a piece of my past that i thought had been lost. when i was a teenager i made a series of t-shirts that i guess today would be called some form of a visual journal. i made this one in 1988, when i was 17. this shirt is my favorite of the bunch - not because of the drawings themselves, but because it is a snapshot of the curiosity i had at this age. i remember being hungry for culture and the outside world; i wanted to escape my little hoosier town to learn, explore, and travel. this shirt was clearly a fusion of things i saw in books, magazines, language, art, things people said, and my emotions at the time. it was my way of processing and trying to understand what was going on around me.


here is the front of the shirt. i made it with a combination of sharpies (which yellowed over time) and laundry pens (which did not).


this must have been taken from a klimt painting; i don't know which one.


how nice it would be to send a letter today for 25 cents.


i still love ice cream.


fascinated by something egyptian.


groucho marx!


somehow i knew that one day i would become one.


believe it or not i remember the reason for this silly doodle. i switched high schools twice, and one required me to take an extra semester of physical education to make up the credit. i had no choice but to enroll in advanced PE with the football team. the teacher didn't know what to do with us so he made us play euchre and sent us to a bowling alley every day for four months. by the end i was so sick of bowling i didn't ever want to touch another bowling ball. i had also reached my limit of ralph waldo emerson and his transcendentalism.



obviously VERY fed up with emerson.



this one was from the heart. i just wanted people to leave me alone.



full of questions and m&ms.


i think this is the guy from echo & the bunnymen. and the cookie cutter comment? apparently suburban sprawl bothered me even back then.


who knows? ;)


crayons still make me happy.


1988? makes me feel like a relic.


nothing but a TP tube for cover.


a little caged bird, wanting to fly.


and the back of the shirt.

now, back to reality. something really IS lost; artsygirl's glasses have mysteriously vanished. the first of many times, i'm sure!

61 comments:

cindy : quaint said...

oh my word, aimee! it is so fantastic and you are very luck to have found such a treasure. the story about pe is too funny. you were definitely one who thought quite deeply at 17. i suppose that can be said of most fine artists.

Ces said...

Oh my gosh! I love you!!!!!

jess gonacha said...

oh my GOODNESS. what a fantastic piece of your history to have!!! this is *so wonderful*. and i totally remember when stamps were 25 cents. geez!

soulbrush said...

this is absolutely incredible and must be kept for your kids, also write all the explanations down and fold it in with the shirt, and do make another one, for 2009 then they can compare them. wow is all i wanna add. wow!

Cynthia said...

What a facinating T-shirt. Amazing, Aimee. You were/are such a symbolic thinker. Thank you for sharing your transition-tee. My first vist...I enjoyed my corner view of artsyville!

Ricë said...

omigosh, this is FABULOUS! i'm going to post a link to it for my altered artwear group. yowza!

Bella Sinclair said...

Oh...my...I...I...holy freakin'...WOW! I am completely speechless! This is an INCREDIBLE treasure. I am absolutely floored. Someone call a medic. I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE your doodles. Please do more! How long did it take you to finish this? Did you do this in stages? Did you ever wear it? Did you wear it at various stages of completion? Did your art teacher kiss your feet? I knew a guy that would draw all over his CheePee folders, but this just blows that away.

Stunned, stunned, stunned.

Linda Teddlie Minton said...

I came here through Rice's blog ... WOW! Sooo wonderful. (Thanks Rice!) (Wish I could make those little double dots above your "e"!)

My Brain on Quilts said...

This is stunning! Thanks for sharing it with us.

Christy said...

WOW. You have been amazing during your whole life so far, haven't you? I'm floored.

P.S. hope you find the glasses!

~Barb~ said...

I am in total and complete awe! Aren't you glad you still have the piece of your past? It really is amazing.
Peace & Love,
~Barb~

Christy said...

mavelous... a relic? I graduated in 86 so I'm like what? dead? LOL
I do know I am totally jealous of this t-shirt. I wonder how many 17 year old today could look at that shirt and totally get it. Probably quite a few.

Kathy said...

I am speechless....this is museum worthy! :-) Wonderful piece of artwork!

Dawn said...

Incredible! Definitely a keeper...

e.beck.artist said...

WOW! ... that shirt blows my mind ... it is extraordinarily well done .... and certainly an interesting glimpse at the old you that would become artsy you .... way cool ....

peggy said...

Fantastic!! Oh I just love this..the whole of it and all the pieces.

peggy gatto said...

I LOVE THIS T SHIRT!
It would be a great cover for "altered couture"!!!!

Milkberry said...

Wow. That is amazing Aimee! Maybe you should do one again (if you have the time) and see how far you've come and what changed and what didn't. That'd be awesome.

Poutalicious said...

This is like a time capsule shirt. This is one of the best posts I've ever seen. For real!

Miss Aimee said...

how amazing that you still hung on to that amazing piece of art. What a great shirt! I love it. I love it. i just love it...

:) cheers

heather smith jones said...

That shirt is AWESOME and I wonder if you wear it from time to time? It should be in a museum, all the time you put into it!

Oh gosh, she lost her glasses already? They'll turn up :)

painted fish studio said...

um, wow. wow. wowowowow. 17? it is so awesome, and not as embarrassing as the doodling i did at that age. i am so glad you saved the shirt, and honored that you shared it with us! you are a rock star. if i had known you in high school, life would have been a bit easier.

painted fish studio said...

oooo, not that you should be embarrased by the shirt in anyway... i re-read my comment and I am embarrassed by my doodles from that age and would rather burn them than share them. i didn't mean you should be embarrassed. oh man, i should just quit while i'm ahead...

ambika said...

What a fantastic snapshot--even better than a yearbook. & just so cool in & of itself.

Ces said...

I think we are all in awe! BELLA! Are you okay? :)

arlene said...

You should have a show!!! This should be in a museum!! Amazing! My world is rocked.
arlene

Anairam said...

What an fantastic T-shirt - it is lovely! I think you should make one every ten years to track your life - it would be amazing to look at them all when your are 80 years old.

joanne said...

um...WOW!!!!!

this is just unbelievably amazing...what can i possibly say to this...i am just awestruck by your talent, your imagination, your expressiveness...oh how i wish i could have let myself be so expressive as a teenager...

this is absolutely priceless...and makes me think some aimee doodles need to go on a line of t-shirts that her adoring fans can also wear!!!!

stunning....

aka: eye-poppers said...

My mouth is hanging open. This T-shirt is past amazing. By the way, years ago I was a cross country truck driver and was amazed by the prejudiced against women on the road. I must tell you, that changed in Lawrence, Kansas. I was treated with warmth and respect there. At that time, I really needed the uplifting. Thanks for sharing your wonderful art.
Laura

annie said...

Wow Aimee! I love that shirt!
Annie - the Netherlands

L'Atelier said...

I am speachless about the t- its fantastic!
So great you still have it, must keep it not matter what, its a treasure.
Hope by now you found the glasses...

sidhebean said...

Wow, Aimee,that's really a historical piece. I agree with other commenters that you are lucky to have such a reminder of your youthful interests, and also it's brilliant to look at!

Asja said...

wow! this is fantastic!

Bella Sinclair said...

I keep coming back to see this! You should start charging admission.


by the way, two more awards for you.....

angela c said...

Wow! What a great job! So glad I followed the link that brought me here. Wouldn't have wanted to miss it. Thanks for sharing it with us.

daisy janie : scoutie girl said...

wow wow wow wow - this full-on expression of yourself is incredible - the end result is so blended and seamless! you are one amazing lady. at this age, i was drawing david bowie images on my wall....

Laurie said...

I don't even know what to say. It is wonderful beyond words.

Laurie
slowlysheturned.net

~Valentina~ said...

Holly Cannoli! That t-shirt is the best piece of art ever! Fantastic…

Krissy said...

um yeah! THAT IS SO AWESOME :)

Casey said...

Wow, that is an amazing piece - I can't believe you did that at 17! The shading you were able to achieve drawing on knit is incredible!

please sir said...

Talent at a young age! I've been going through old stuff and it's so interesting and fun. Lovely piece and a must to hold on to!

Kelly C. said...

AMAZING, aimee!!! i love this! i hope you frame it.
*)

lynda said...

wow that is neat.

Esti said...

aimee, I'm very impressed by your talent. This piece is stunning and so meaningful. So glad you keep it.

aimee said...

wow, thank you all!! :) welcome to the altered artwear readers from rice's group and to all the new commenters. i haven't worn this shirt because i didn't want to wash it - back then there weren't too many fabric safe markers. it still turned into a ratty mess - it's just a cheapie old hanes t-shirt and i'm surprised it hasn't disintegrated yet!

steve said...

Ooooh wow!! This is plain awesome! Seriously, you were ahead of your time here Aimee. Nice!

Kelly said...

wow! aimee, this is truly incredible! what a great thing to stumble back across.

stephanie levy said...

Hi Aimee - your shirt is incredible. What a wonderful art object from your past :) Just proves that you were always bursting with talent!

You know what occured to me tonight?? Your artwork would look so great printed as book covers. Have you ever done book cover illustration before?

Also - have you heard about the Design for Mankind competition - transforming text into art? There was a post about it on Poppytalk - be sure to check it out if you haven't already, because your "doodles" would be just perfect.

Okay, late night, must go to bed now :)
Thanks as always for your encouragement!!

Katrina said...

oh my goodness! what a treasure. and what an amazing amount of work. wow.

●• Tiny Red said...

your best piece, in my opinion! really great!!!
you should frame it. ::::::
T

Alexandra Hedberg said...

I must say I'm impressed.

Are you considering starting to make them again? or maybe pass the tradition over to your oldest daughter?

Alexandra Hedberg said...

..hm I sounded reluctant to admit I was impressed. But you know what I mean?

I'll link to you!

So n So's Mom said...

Superb! I just love everything about it. The medium. The quirkiness of it. The time travel aspect. The story through symbols. I will be back often to see what else you and your amazing talent come up with. In addition, I agree with several of your posters who say you should do a 2009 shirt. Definitely for yourself but quite possibly as a business. It's not blogging but you'd be fantastically successful.

Veja cecilia said...

wow! Inpressive work...

Sharon said...

OMG!! Black and White!! I love love this beautful work of art. Wow!! Sharon

Megan Coyle said...

Oh wow, this is wonderful. It must have taken you such a long time to make--what a work of art.

Nina Crittenden said...

Completely fabulous! 1988 does seem so long ago! Holy cow! Thank you for sharing this treasure with us- you are a gifted, wonderful artist!

Tim Budden said...

Like the movie of the tattooed man whose whole life was painted over his body. There's something really deep and meaningful about these T-shirts. Treasure them forever!!

yoon see said...

Beautiful! You are so talented:)

FruensWerk2 said...

OHHHH:WOOOOOOOOOOOW:::
I`M TOTALLY:::what do U say? My mouth is open wide...THIS IS TOO COOL...I did t-shirts my self years ago...but this is AWESOME :D
happy for U to find it again...And kind of go back in time...

Suana said...

Waw, Aimee, this is just absolutely priceless! Yes, like so many wows! I add another WOW!!
Thank you for sharing this beautiful piece of your history, I am sure it brings back many memories...