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...jen o'connor's...Artful Adventures & Daily Inspirations

I Love Art, Adore the Handmade and Treasure the Vintage. I am the Fun Mom, the Silly Friend and the Writer who wants to make more room for beauty in the everyday.

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Tuesday, April 3, 2007

Fate pulls the bunny from the hat

Sometimes.....some, magical times....the planets align and, just at the right moment, you reach for something and it is there...the person you are supposed to meet is looking at you...the "Idea" comes to you straight and true like roadsigns leading you...the art presents itself, as if it were made just and only for you. You feel as if the wheel of time is turning in your favor and someone has joined your parade, marching right there along side of you as a friend. This is fate...can you remember when it, and time, turned for you?

Nicky came to the party as a guest. Tentatively she says to me, "I make things, would you take a look...". See hands me a brown paper lunch bag and, when I find a quiet moment, I steal a look. Reaching in, I pull out this fabulous nugget of felted personality. Wisps of animae, all nostalgia, found objects, textures, merriment, and oh, so tiny, and sooooo blessedly cute....

As most likely you can tell, I am not often speechless...but there I was. I had just pulled a bunny out of the hat and with it, all the magic that Nicole Bowen creates. From her minds eye, to the sketch book, and somehow, through the sweet sorcery of her hands comes a candy brand of creations. These are sweet bon bon characters, decadently tantalizing in form, unrespressably fun, and color drenched with thick waves of texture. Purely irresistible, like the goodies of Easter Basket wonder she calls her creations "Necessary Excess"!

Nicole is petty irresistible too. She is spunky and and sincere... She juggles her juggle with complete comical aplomb, delving into her art work in search of release, good humor and cheer (look at those party hats she's hung in her studio, and how about that appletini in hand alongside her talented Mom, Judy Menard at the Fall Fete). What emerges from her effort is nothing less than all of her festive spirit, her sweet sensibilities, distilled into cupcake-like creations...boxes, necklaces, animals, funny little folk and wee holiday sprites.

Yes, Nicole sure is fun, but her spirit of adventure just may be unparalleled. Who else would be willingly kidnapped by me on her way to Halloween & Vine to take in the sights of San Francisco (check out the view behind us), stomach armed with spicy tacos from The Mission? Who else would wake up at 3am to shuttle Laurie Meseroll to the airport...... and then double-back with nursing-baby and me in the backseat of the rent-a-car to find a flea market at 6am in Pleasanton? We were so cold that morning, that by the time Nicol Sayre and Lori Baker-Corelis found us we had bought coats and polka dotted petticoats (yes, true....) to warm us. Antiquing is of course a very serious business, one cannot be deterred by frozen toes or popsicle-like fingers... Nicky's chartreuse green suede coat circa 1977: $20, memory priceless.

You know, each of us is the mother of 3 kiddies, and when you get us out of the house, put us on a plane and tell us to go to work, you never know what may happen along the way. I am still wondering how I got that mannequin home on the plane!? And I simply cannot wait for our pilgrimage to Halloween & Vine this year!

Nicole is a constant source of friendship and fun for me. I treasure her for this.... and I adore how fate, in an act of raw kindness, allowed us to meet.
It's great for Earth Angels to present Nicky's work, but even better for me to have found a kindred spirit in search of good Mexican food, old stuff and a good time!

When the box of her new spring and Easter goodies arrived this week, I couldn't help but smiling with the memory of the journey...and how she has taught me that I could pull not only a rabbit, but a chick, or any 'ol thing from Her Hat...

xxoo Jen
Earth Angels Toys


Laurie Meseroll said...

Nicky's little guys are some of the first things I "had to have" from Jen--there's something just so weirdly, appealingly CUTE about them. Having Nicky's things in my studio are a constant reminder to me that it's cool to be cute because she does it without being too adorable, precious and perky. (ugh!..."perky"...)

Thank you Nicky!

P.S.I can't believe you guys got up so early to get rid of me!

Theresa said...

I have several of Nicky's creations and each one I adore. Her style is one-of-a-kind just like her... sweet and fabulous.

P.S. I love the little girl chick in the third photo...she's just to cute :)

constance said...

You can tell that Nicky is fun and spunky and soulful by her creations. I am super impressed that she a Mom of three and accomplishes so much like you!

Melissa said...

I love the way Nicole gathers materials and magically creates her little works of art. I love her imaginative vision & artistic voice. Her work always makes me smile, and displaying them in my home is brings me great joy.

Ulla said...

I am really loving all your inspiring posts! I just put a 'sneak peek' of what I'm putting in the mail tomorrow for you - hope you like them!

jill earthgirl said...

I was smitten when I first saw Nicky's work and meeting her only sealed the deal- smart, fun, creative and charming- just like her felted friends!! Nicky's feather topped, sparkeley snowman smiles at me as I slowly type.

I love the blog, it's like a mini visit anytime.

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