Monday, October 31, 2011


I haven't been completely idle these past months. I have been hatching a new piece. The inspiration, was to commemorate and celebrate the grand struggle to showdom that Paula and I endured, survived and brought to actual fruition. At show's end Paula presented me with a marvelous piece and the above was my answer "Shiny Things"
We had said more times than I can count the hardest thing about putting something together was focusing.
We were like two crows always after the next shiny thing, which meant an awful lot of extra work finding our way back and then reigniting those works that we were supposed to be preparing for the show.

Here is the most fabulous piece "Decision Points" from Paula.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Summer song

In this season of cicada, shall we
Too, emerge sans our outer skin
to become some other thing? 
Fly and expire 
with a final buzz in the dirt?
What changes us is what we make of the time
Waiting for our wings to dry.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

What's left...

I wasn't sure whether to put a period or a question mark after this blog title. Depending on my mood it could be either. Tomorrow Paula and I are dismantling the show and I think that I am finally over my post partyum depression. I have never given birth to anything that cries but rarely have I created anything that didn't call out to be changed. I have since cleaned up my studio ( a little ) but looking at it right after the big push to get everything ready is a really good visual analogy for my post-show state of mind-
Yup...a mess.

Friday, June 10, 2011

Parallel Lives extended By Popular Demand?

Paula and I would just love to say that.
The truth is somewhat less spectacular, but no less of an honor.
Our gracious hosts, Cooper Young Community Association are letting us keep the show up for another couple of weeks.
So, if you missed it and are feeling guilty or unfulfilled, we'd love to have you take the opportunity to see it before it retires.

So, if you have lost your invitation- scroll back a few posts and you'll find all the pertinent information there.
Go and see-
And speak up-
We'd love to know what you think- even if it's "don't quit your day job"

Pictured : "Of two minds"
Quilting by Paula Kovarik. Figure by Jean Holmgren. 2010

Saying goodbye to the party animal.

Sadly, Wednesday we had to say goodbye to our dog Neville. You may recognize him from his part time modeling job as party animal for our occasional house party invitations.

He was like that old saying, "when he was good, he was very, very good- but when he was bad he was horrid" It was the sweet charming side that sustained us and we loved him anyway warts and all.

He is shown here in his full fall party ensemble, doing his one and only trick, sitting up on his haunches being master of all he surveys.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Gravity Shift

Is this a face or what?

For those who did not know John Slorp, this is a face that just might keep you up nights. For those of us lucky enough to have called him friend or mentor, sometimes we did not sleep so well either. He pushed, wheedled, cajoled, demanded, and sometimes even made nice to make sure that we were the very best artists and people that we could be- and we loved and admired him for it.

His strength, counsel, presence and wicked, wicked humor will be greatly missed. John passed away on May 21, leaving all of us that he touched with a sense of loss and a feeling that gravity had surely shifted.

My very favorite story about him, almost worn smooth in the telling, is the time I was in his office showing him a clay-headed soft sculpture figure (OK, a cat doll) that I had just completed. As we were talking, John spied the spectacularly humorless CFO of Memphis College of Art in route to his office.
"Watch this" he says, as he balanced the cat on his head.
He had an entire financial policy conversation with four striped legs and a very long tail draped over either side of his face and a leering neon head menacingly peering over his own head (which he kept, unflappably- along with a completely straight face and focus) through out the entire conversation. (as did the CFO)

I think if there is one story that defined John for me that was it.
Under all that steel wool, was a passion for silliness that was just as unbelievably well cultivated as every other creative thought, painting or philosophy was serious, important and compelling.

I will miss him.

Marvelous photo of John:
Courtesy of Terrence Coffman

Friday, June 3, 2011

Showing off The Show

I finally recovered from the last giant push for the show sometime last week- but it has taken this long to gather up the wherewithal to say thank you to everyone who helped us, everyone who came and all of our trusted friends, family and cheerleaders.
Here's proof that it was well attended:

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

This is really happening.

After only two years of conversation, constant questioning, sharing ideas, holding each other up, shopping galleries, learning to accept rejection gracefully (sort of) and oh, I almost forgot, making art-
Parallel Lives will go live at:

Cooper Young Community Association offices

2298 Young Avenue, Memphis TN 38104

May 20 – June 11, 2011

Opening reception:

6 – 9pm, Friday, May 20, 2011

Monday, Wednesday, Thursday: Noon – 5pm

Tuesday: 12:30 – 6pm, Closed Friday.


Textures, toys and stories will be on display at the CYCA offices from May to June. Parallel Lives captures the spirit and sense of two Memphis artists. Jean Holmgren and Paula Kovarik work as graphic designers but find art in odd and different directions. The work includes Toys from the Other Side by Jean Holmgren, art quilts by Paula Kovarik and Conversation Piece, an installation revealing their collaborative process.

So, with much humility, fear and trembling and a BIG thanks to our respective spouses, Leigh Ann Dye (our matchmaker muse) and the Craft B'ers for their support- IT IS REALLY HAPPENING and we hope you will come see what all the fuss is about.

Marvelous postcard by Paula Kovarik, wearing her everyday Graphic Designer hat.

Friday, February 4, 2011

My Heart

Every year I am honored to make a heart for the Memphis Child Advocacy Center to be auctioned at their annual fundraising event. (All the hearts will be on display from February 7-11 at the Memphis College of Art)
It is wonderful to contribute in a small way to an organization that takes cares of our smallest and most defenseless citizens and give them a voice and a defense against those that would abuse them. It's hard to even imagine what those kids have had to endure and the work that lies ahead of them in order to heal.