Art Making & Nursing Competence Post Makes Top 100 List has included a post from this blog, Art Making and Nursing Competence, on its list of 100 Blog Posts You Should Read Before Starting Nursing School. The post is listed at #65.

   Art Making and Nursing Competence was posted August 4, 2009. It references the making of  The Darlings’ Nursery, which was exhibited at The Manor of Art, at Milepost 5 in Portland.

Room 360 at The Manor of Art Opens Tonight

     Starting at 6 pm this evening, the Manor of Art will open for 10 days of art, music and performance. Stop by room 360 on the 3rd floor to see The Darling’s Nursery, my latest installation of paintings.

Hope to see you there!

The Manor of Art Opens This Friday: J.Paradisi in Room 360

White Gloves (2007) part of the installation in room 360's closet. artist: JParadisi

White Gloves (2007) part of the installation in room 360's closet. artist: JParadisi

     It’s a little after 10pm and David and I just returned home from the installation of The Darling’s Nursery, the exhibition I’m contributing in room 360 of The Manor of Art. We weren’t the last to leave, either.

   The Manor used to be a retirement home, and the hallways and rooms still have characteristics of a care facility, such as medication lockboxes in the rooms, and red call lights above the doors of each room. The hallways are painted a strange turquoise green. It’s more than a little creepy, perfect for my installation, which alludes to the dark side of the story of Peter Pan, told by a former PICU nurse, not the Walt Disney version.

   David worked out an ingenious way to light the room beyond the ghastly flourescent ceiling light. We’ll return tomorrow, so he can rig lighting for the installation piece I’ve placed in room 360’s closet.

Art Making and Nursing Competence

The other day at work, my colleague, who was charge nurse, hung up the phone, smiling. She had negotiated a situation with another department, and was pleased with the outcome. Turning to me, she said, “You know, one of the things I really love about nursing is how it’s taught me how to problem-solve. I feel competent handling different things that come up.”
I was thinking about this yesterday afternoon, while working on an art piece for The Darlings’ Nursery, the installation I’m making for The Manor of Art. I was sitting in a chair at my work table, applying gold metal leaf to objects. I’ve never worked with metal leaf before. If you haven’t either, you should know that it’s about a tenth the thickness of  a transparent bio-occlusive,  self-adhesive dressing, and it does not have the easy -to -handle paper edges that many of them have. Read this to mean, it is almost impossible to handle, and tears if you breathe on it. I consider myself to have excellent fine motor control, yet I found it challenging to work with. Because I like a challenge, and because it was above 90°F in my studio, I had a rotating fan running, and had to time the placement of the leaf with the blowing of the fan. I wasn’t concerned at all that there is no time available to scrape the leaf off and redo the project in time for the show, but I was glad that I wasn’t using real gold leaf (it’s expensive). I’m brave, but not stupid.

Between cursing and placing the metal leaf , I mused over how relaxed I actually was about the whole project. After transporting sick children in helicopters, knowing that I can manage an airway until a patient can be intubated, defibrillating a child in pulseless V-Tach (in nursing school, they said I’d never see it), and safely administering chemotherapy, I realize that trying new things doesn’t really scare me. I learned how to set-up my stereo system and first computer years ago, because I realized it isn’t anymore difficult than managing arterial lines, CVP’s, ICP monitors, and ventilators in the PICU.

Nursing is complex, challenging, and stressful. I credit it with providing me with a large range of skills, and the confidence to expand my world.

A Very Good Week

A painting by Anna S. King

A painting by Anna S. King/courtesy Anka Gallery

   It’s Sunday, the end of a very busy week for me.

   On Tuesday, I presented The Acorn Contains the Tree before a panel at PNCA for critique. I’m happy to say, they were very kind, and the event marks the completion of a Certificate in Fine Arts…TaDa! I think I may have broken the record for the longest time taken to complete the certificate. No matter, heh, heh, heh, it’s mine.

   I’ve been working on the installation for The Manor of Art at Milepost 5. Besides making a new installation piece specifically for the show, I’ve been writing the artist statement, my bio, and making jpegs for the event’s website.

   Then, there’s the dual interviews for pdxArtscene of artist/curator Anna S. King and artist/curator John Graeter. I finished the drafts last night, and they’re ready for release online. They should be posted sometime before First Thursday, August 6th.  Be sure to visit their show of individual and collaborative work at Anka Gallery this month.

   Then there’s the big news. I received a phone call from New York a couple of days ago. One of my paintings has been accepted (through peer review) by The American Journal of Nursing, and AJN will publish it on the cover of the October 2009 issue.

   It’s been a very good week.

It’s Toooooo Hot (!), but the Art Goes On

Room 360 at The Manor of Art

Room 360 at The Manor of Art

    It’s 105°F in the shade on my balcony as I write this. OMG, if you live in Oregon, you know how unprepared for this kind of heat Portlanders are.  Nevertheless, I kept my promise from the last post, and drove out to The Manor at Milepost 5, to take a couple photos of room 360.

   It was worth the visit: I had the opportunity to see some of John Graeter’s art work. He’s the Artist Coordinator, and Co- Director (along with Chris Haberman) of Portland City Art, the  organization behind The Manor of Art. I was able to view some of John’s collaborative work, made with fellow artist Anna S. King.  Both artists have rooms in The Manor, but the collaborative pieces are for their joint show at Anka Gallery in August. I’m interviewing each of them for pdxArtscene. More on that later.

   Then, upstairs, I took these photographs of empty 360, and measured the walls too, to get an idea how many and which paintings I’ll hang. Sorry, but it was just too hot in the courtyard to do any shots of the exterior building today.

Artists at The Manor of Art: The Energy Collects, Like Thunder Clouds

     David and I were out at Milepost 5 yesterday, preparing room 360 in the old Baptist Retirement Manor for my installation.  Already, artists are moving in materials and tools, and I could almost palpate the energy as it collected in the musty old hallways.  The cool thing about positive energy is how contagious it is. Everyone’s creativity is enhanced by it.

   We’re going back out this afternoon, and today I’ll remember to take a photograph or two for this blog.

The Manor of Art: Julianna Paradisi in Room 360

   My summer hiatus after installing two gallery exhibitions last month proved to be short-lived. I am now planning a new installation that goes up next week (watch me pull a rabbit out of my hat).  I am one of “100 artists and exhbitions” participating in The Manor of Art at Milepost 5,  900 NE 81st Ave., Portland, Oregon 97213, August 14-23.

   I have room 360 on the creepy third floor(which is perfect for my installation) of  The Manor,  formerly The Baptist Manor Retirement Home,  established in 1915. The 10 day festival of exhibits, live music and performance is housed on three floors of the soon to be renovated building.  The renovation of the building into artist studios signifies phase 2 of the Milepost 5 art campus/community.

   Follow this link:

for the complete schedule and information about The Manor of Art.