“Sketching Life”


Friday, October 4, 2013

How many people exhibited objects?


How many people came but did not bring objects?



Posted by Pop Up Museum Intern Lauren Benetua

What was it about?

Held in collaboration with local artists Cynthia Armstrong and her urban crawl sketch art class, this pop up museum on Sketching Life invited all to explore our environment through artful observation and notation. This group of  ‘sketch crawlers’ meets periodically to draw and write  shared experiences, in whatever environment they find themselves in.

How did it go?

As Cynthia remarked, “more than a method to hone artistic abilities, sketching allows us to really see and experience place and time….life,” this First Friday Pop Up Museum in Abbott Square gave us an alternative way of keeping memories.  With all of our modern devices today, camera-phones, snap chats, instagrammers and the like, we often fall into fast exchanges and instant gratitude.  Having the sketchers' journals on display impressed a very intimate mode of being, seeing and thinking upon all of our visitors.

It wasn't just that the journals that were self-exhibited were beautiful.  They reminded us that our technological gadgets have really changed the way we connect with our surroundings, whether people, objects, the scenery...the possibilities are endless.  By  taking the time to sketch from life, not only do you take in the fine details of that subject, but you open the rest of your senses and take note: what you hear, what you smell, what you feel.  When sketching in a little bistro on a vacation down the coast you might remember the crunch of freshly baked bread and how the toasted grains permeated the room when brought from the oven, or how the lazy breeze toyed with the strength of the sun, or how the laughter of a friend stretched a smile across your face.

The journals on display included 'sketch-a-day' challenges, encouraging sketchers to keep a visual journal.  One woman, Karen Cole, shared her experience with sketching:

I have albums and photos, and I can't remember or I'm always trying to figure out where we are or what is in the picture.  But with my sketchbook, I know exactly what I did.  Every single day!  It's because i have to sit down and take my time with it, and I can add my own notes in, too.

After being inspired by the break from life in the fast lane, perhaps we will all grow more conscious of our surroundings.  The wealth of knowledge and wisdom in practicing mindfulness can be taught in very creative ways, and to the Sketch Crawlers, we tip our hats!


You can view more about Cynthia Armstrong and her sketchers here, and be sure to check out our Pop Up Museum Pinterest and Flickr for more photos.