I visited the American Visionary Art Museum in Baltimore last weekend. For one thing it gave me a new appreciation of Visionary (AKA “Outsider”) art. The museum describes itself as the “official national museum for self-taught, intuitive artistry.  Since opening in 1995, the museum has sought to promote the recognition of intuitive, self-reliant, creative contribution. . . [the museum houses] wonders created by farmers, housewives, mechanics, retired folk, the disabled, the homeless, as well as the occasional neurosurgeon — all inspired by the fire within!”

I loved looking at the art, especially the fabric pieces, and art made from found objects.  There was a lot of that!

I bought a book in the shop called “Who’s your Dada — Redefining the the doll through mixed media,” by Linda and Opie O’Brien. It gave me some much needed insight into how to attach found objects, and spurred me to think about trying out something different with my stash. So far I’ve been using found objects as texture and interest in a piece, not trying to construct an object with them.

Here is my first piece, a fun one inspired by my friend who hangs her wash out to dry.

I’ll also include some other pictures from the museum.

Martha Ressler, Barb Hangs Out the Wash, fabric and found objects. 12 x 12", framed.

Martha Ressler, Barb Hangs Out the Wash, fabric and found objects. 12 x 12″, framed.

We actually got to meet Bob Benson, as he was at the museum. This is a small piece, about 12 x 12 inches.

We actually got to meet Bob Benson, as he was at the museum. This is a small piece, about 12 x 12 inches.

Part of the outdoor public art portion of the museum.

Part of the outdoor public art portion of the museum.

Gallery-A-Go-Go bus by Nancy Josephson

A charmingly obsessive bus, completely covered.  It is right outside the door of the museum.

A charmingly obsessive bus, completely covered. It is right outside the door of the museum.

Detail of Stegosaurus, by Leo Sewell, b. 1945.

Detail of Stegosaurus, by Leo Sewell, b. 1945.

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