Thursday, February 25, 2016

Time to Run Away WIth the Circus!

 It's Time to Run Away with the Circus:  Encaustics and Beeswax Collages featuring vintage circus images by Melissa Hronkin

Heroes, artists, entertainers, outsiders.  I am intrigued by these people and animals from the circus-past.  The virtual, digital world leaves me nostalgic for the anachronistic, turn of the century age where trains chugged, gears turned, and science involved a lot of alchemy.  Alchemy, magic, and mystery were embodied in the circus, and entertained the masses.  

“The most beautiful thing we can experience is the mysterious. It is the source of all true art and science"-Albert Einstein.  

By creating compositions and encasing these memories in beeswax, I am creating memorials to a time gone by. I am honoring these heroes.  As an artist, teacher, performer, and searcher, these stories inspire me when it seems the magic might be lost.

 I have been gathering vintage circus images and material.  I am intrigued with the idea of "running away with the circus"...especially when school was starting in September!  I have been thinking about an epic journey of a girl or woman who is running away to join the circus.  Along the way she meets many characters:  a talking crow, a swarm of bees and a bee charmer, and murmurations of starlings.  I am thinking about doing some writing to accompany these images.  Maybe by the end of our journey the girl will find her place in the circus or wherever the journey will lead her.  

In the winter of 2015 I composed many of the pieces, but didn't return to them until winter 2016 when I realized that K. C. Bonkers might be a great place to display the works, fitting in with their theme of circus, whimsy, and magic.  This summer I will take a trip to the Circus Museum in Baraboo, WI.  In the meantime I am mastering the art of playing the accordion, washboard, and other tricks and talents.
Some of the pieces include a tribute to Maud Wagner, the first American female tattoo artist.  Another entitled "dangerous hobbies" includes a man wearing a bee beard and a woman tiger tamer.   

Sunday, October 11, 2015

Hexagons for Hope and Healing

Hexagons for Healing and Hope

Honeycomb is made up of a tessellation of hexagons formed by beeswax.  It is not only mathematically elegant and efficient, but representative of the interconnectedness of all life.  Honeybees are a super organism and one bee cannot survive on its own without the rest of the colony. 

Hexagons for Healing and Hope is my effort to try and repair, restore, and provide a way for people to help the bees.  There is a honeybee crisis world-wide, and we are farmers felt it very personally this season.  The simple, repeated form of the hexagon is my meditation and prayer for the bees.  

I have created a series of encaustic artworks and acrylic paintings called "hexagons for healing and hope". We have had several rough years in our bee yard, and this year we will not be taking honey off of our few living colonies.  This also means we will not be offering honey at our holiday sales.  This is a sad conversation we have had with our returning customers.  We usually use revenue from honey sales to purchase more bees in the Spring.  How can we re-populate our bee yard if we have no honey to sell?

Your purchase of a hexagon painting (or other artwork/products) will help the bees directly and hopefully we can re-establish our apiary for next year.  We continue to try and educate ourselves to become smarter, more sustainable beekeepers, and diversify our honeybee inspired products such as encaustics and mead.  

The honeybees are at the heart of our business and all of our creative projects at Algomah Acres and Meadery originate from the beehive.  We realize that we need to heal slowly and at the source along with expanding and diversifying our products.  It is, however, a precarious dance with nature, and we are not always aware of the choreography in this partnership--it reveals itself as we go.  

A collaborative community project with hexagons is in our future....and we will keep you posted.  Thank you again for caring for the bees and all of your creative and supportive efforts.  

Saturday, May 2, 2015

Encaustics and Beeswax Collage Class at the Honey House

Fee:  30$ per person—all supplies provided/included!

Sundays 2-5 PM:

Sundays 2-5 PM:  June 12th, July 10th, Aug 14th, and Sept. 11th

Come and discover the sweetness and luminosity of working with the ancient and contemporary art of encaustics (pigmented beeswax) and beeswax collage.    Participants will learn about the history of the medium and honeybees that support it. We will create several pieces in experimental encaustics using Xerox transfer and mixed-media collage.   No experience required - just a sense of adventure.   Check out the blog  for Melissa's work and links to encaustic information. 

june 12th

July 10th

August 14th

Sept. 11th

Monday, January 26, 2015

Dangerous hobbies and naming the characters...

Along with working on pieces, I have a sketchbook or sorts to keep notes and ideas.  I am working on names for the people in the images:  Cecil the beekeeper, Irene with the Zebra and Ruby the lion tamer.  If I build characters perhaps the story will emerge.  I also plan to take a writing class at the CCCAC in March.  

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

other projects and studio views

January has begun and so has deep winter.  Snow days have allowed me some extra time to work on projects.

Circles and and Snow and some New Ladies

"The whole of Le Cirque de Reves if formed by a series of circles.  Perhaps it is a tribute to the origin of hte word "circus," deriving from the Greek kirkos meaning circle, or ring."--Friedrick Thiessen, 1892...from "The Night Circus" by Erin Morgenstern.

I am reading this book at the suggestion of a friend....I am also seeing circles emerge in the recent artworks: