welcome!

Whether you've reached this blog willingly or by force I'm happy to have you here.
ersi marina's workroom is always open to the public, even when I am not in. Sometimes I need to sleep.
And to paint.
And to play with my four cats.
My name is Ersi Marina and I live in Spain though I was born and grew up in Athens, Greece. I kept it all very Mediterranean.
This blog is a means to share my work and snippets of my life, as well as to be in contact with you all. I hope you'll enjoy your visit.

Monday, 20 January 2014

days like a piano -out of tune

Here I am again, 20 days into January, the new year. The new beginning. These are the right words for it, I think, though they are not entirely comforting. I am starting out on a path with lots of rear view mirrors and very poor visibility ahead. There is only one trail to follow but no map of it. As Spanish poet Antonio Machado wrote: 'Wanderer, there is no road, you open the road by walking.' So I'm walking.

I wrote in my previous entry that I want to dedicate my time and efforts to my art, and that 2014 will be a happy year. What I left out is that this brave, hopeful resolution is also my only realistic road ahead. Finding a regular job in Spain is next to impossible nowadays and thousands of people battle through 8- and even 12-hour workdays for little more than 400 euros a month. I don't want to go there.


So I am spending lots of time trying to promote ATTIC PAPERS, my online shop. I am learning as I go. Learning about respectful marketing, interesting sites and resources, free or affordable publicity, etc. The balsa box above was sold this morning, it's already packaged and tomorrow I am taking it to the post office. A happy spot on the road.

Another happy spot is a few days ahead, on Sunday 2 February. Some other members of our group 'Roots' and I will be meeting a gallerist, who will visit this area and take a tour of our studios and workplaces, dispersed as they are in different villages of the territory. I am a bit nervous and a lot more content. I've been sorting through older works and also making some new ones for the occasion. A few collages and some larger watercolours -larger than my usual size. They are too large to scan and the dark, rainy weather does not allow for natural-light photography. Since I hate using the flash, I'll take pictures when the weather permits it.


This is the only rather decent shot I was able to take on Saturday, when we had a few hours of grinning sun. Collage and ink on paper. Apparently, I am still 'under the influence' of my paper homes though something is shifting. Slowly, timidly, barely aware of where it's going. A bit like me. Fittingly, it's untitled.

Going through this entry again I realised that it's hardly clear why my days are like a piano out of tune. Well, there is definitely some kind of music in the air, distant and distorted but there. It sounds a bit like a soundtrack from one of Fellini's films though played on a piano that needs to be tuned. It's sweet and jesting but I can't make out the score. 2014 is a year for tuning-up.

16 comments:

  1. Seems to me that you are a piano being tuned ..... and the music is starting to flow. I adore the quote by Antonio Machado: 'Wanderer, there is no road, you open the road by walking.' I think I may have to borrow that and hold onto it until I find my own quote ...... hope you don't mind. Like you I am trying to make something serious of my artistic life, taking on some new projects and trying to make sure that will leave me time for the creative work I want to do on my own accord. Have decided to make a book or two for 'Personal Histories" as well. You may just have to visit us here when the exhibition opens in October.

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    1. Susan, I'll start from the end: I would LOVE to visit when the exhibition opens, it would be so exciting to see you again and to view the 'Personal Histories' books together. If it's up to me, my wandering feet will open a road to Australia this summer -oops, winter!

      You can hold onto Machado's quote indefinitely. He was a wonderful poet, so sensitive and insightful. You would probably enjoy reading his poetry, it has been translated to English.

      As for your projects, I would be surprised if anything you take on doesn't turn out successfully. I wish you best of luck with them anyway, and lots of time for your own creative work.

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  2. I agree with Susan--that quote is perfect. You have been on quite a sojourn in the last few months. We still feel fairly insulated from the economic woes elsewhere but I fear our turn is coming. Best wishes with the gallerist. I think your pieces are quite nice!

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    1. Thank you, Cindi! I'll blog about the meeting with the gallerist, it represents one of the most promising prospects for 2014 at this point. As for the economic woes, I sincerely hope they'll never reach you. This kind of roller coaster seems to have only downward slopes.

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  3. I sincerely hope that your economic doldrums resolve themselves Ersi, so you don't have to depend entirely on your wonderful artwork and I hope that your contact with the gallerist proves fruitful. All the best with your shop.

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    1. Hello Jack and thanks so much. I hope the gallerist agrees with you about my work :) The shop is a long term investment of effort and hopes, I am doing my best to promote it.

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  4. I hope that 2014 will see the economic situation in Spain improve for you ersi, and that your endeavours with the shop and the gallery are very successful for you. I too really like the quote and will see if I can find the works of Antonio Machado in English.

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    1. I do thank you, Helen. Hope is also a bit out of tune but definitely around. The works of Machado have been translated to English, at least the most relevant. Here's a link to a Wikipedia article on him: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Antonio_Machado

      My very best wishes for 2014 to you too.

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  5. Hi ersi - I can't really imagine how tough the times are in Spain - we have been mostly insulated form major economic downturn or done-times here; altho folk are struggling; it is nothing like you are experiencing. Art can hopefully light the path that lies ahead of you; as the fog lifts and the way becomes clearer. Machado now has many fans in Australia it seems! That is such a lyrical and poetic quote, I might have to borrow it form Susan occasionally! Go well...

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    1. Hello Fiona. I couldn't begin to explain how tough things are in Spain, there are so many desperate situations, so many unjust and probably illegal political measures taken, so much corruption that it has reached the royal family. I'd leave if I had an alternative in another country.

      I appreciate your good wishes, thank you. As for Machado, he deserves all the fans he can get. His poetry is really exceptional and I think you and Susan would really appreciate it. It could even inspire some work?

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  6. It sounds like you've had a tough time of late, Ersi. I am happy to hear that there's a note of hope on the horizon though (& may the planning/preparing for the meeting with the gallerist keep you going/your spirits up until then). I had another look at your shop, & must say it's looking really good...you have made a beautiful collection of pieces. I think it just takes time for the word to spread. Here's wishing that, as 2014 unfolds, the tune you hear becomes ever more harmonious & melodious...

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    1. Hey, Lisa, thanks so much for your wishes and your lovely words on my shop. I know promoting it takes time and the reactions I've had up till now are very positive. I'm optimistic about that. Times are tough for the great majority of people in Spain and the sense of precariousness is overwhelming. The only alternative is to keep fighting, so I do. It's a life-changing experience.

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  7. Hi Ersi. Just want to wish you good luck with your artistic work, and that your financial situation improves. Our austerity in the U.K. is created through the actions of our government, and bankers. Sometimes we just have to keep making art to remain sane in the face of tough times. Best wishes for 2014.

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    1. Thank you Jan, same to you! The Spanish crisis was created by the same people, the government changed the laws -and even the Constitution- so that the society would have to pay the humongous debt of the private banks. I hope things are better in the U.K. and certainly for you.

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  8. Hi Ersi, I do hope that economic roller-coaster takes a turn for the better soon. My best wishes for your shop and your studio. Exciting to meet the gallerist, even if a bit stressful. Your work is so beautiful, so gentle, it surely will find an appreciative audience.

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    1. I love reading your comments, Carol, thank you for visiting my blog and for your good wishes. Some bolder marks have been appearing in my work recently, probably the result of my strong feelings. It's a turning point in my life, no guarantees. I try to remain true to myself.

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