Kaethe Kauffman

What do you wish for?

Lorna Simpson, III (Three Wishbones in a Wood Box), and Gary Simmons’, Can’t See Straight, works are dissimilar in appearance. But they unite in concept. Both tap into a human yearning: to believe a wish could be fulfilled. Simpson’s presentation is potent, but aloof. An orderly arrangement of seven wishbones in three vertical rows, invites …

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The Ancient and the Modern: Archipenko and Roman Beasts

Alexander Archipenko’s Standing Figure of a Woman, created in 1930, is sleek and polished. She seems to stand in elegant repose, but, look closely and notice she’s in a contrapposto stance, off balance, one leg in front of the other, as if she’s ready to stride or spring. The sleek, yet organic contours of Archipenko’s …

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Foraging

Foraging is in my blood, as if ancient Hunter and Gatherer genes can’t be denied. At the beach, I compulsively gather interesting rocks and shells. Their designs enchant me, and I rub my fingers over the textures, satisfying something deep within. Four to six inch-diameter stones from my father’s favorite salmon fishing beach, La Push …

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Pandemic Itch

Until the pandemic mandate to avoid touching our faces, I thought I rarely laid a finger on that piece of anatomy other than to apply my daily vitamin E cream.  In accord with a universal truism, the minute something became forbidden, I had to do it. My head seemed to erupt in hundreds of itches …

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Introvert Heaven

Aside from the threat of imminent, hideous death by asphyxiation, I have never felt so supremely happy as during the pandemic. As an introvert, I’d always suffered as an invisible minority, a person who craved quiet in a noisy world. Cities assumed everyone wanted a stadium or a convention center. With successful bond-raising efforts and, …

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People Watching

Mom taught me well. She loved “people watching,” as she called it. During my childhood, when we were in a downtown crowd or sitting in a restaurant, she’d poke me and giggle, “Look at that man’s nose. It has a drop on the end. Oh, my God, it’s about to drip.” As we chuckled, we …

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Odd Confidences: Posers

In an unconscious way, I seemed to encourage people to confide in me. I’d always delighted in asking folks questions. Could I help it if they answered me? Recently, I’ve heard three doozies. See links below for all 3. These three unsolicited revelations shocked me and caught me delightfully unaware each time. But, upon reflection, …

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My Inner Caricature

Some old friends, Gladys and Kevin, who lived five hundred miles away, offered to drive six of my over-sized art pieces across the state at the close of a recent exhibit. Intrepid travelers, they routinely manipulated an unwieldy Recreational Vehicle, the kind I hated being stuck behind on the road, all around North American highways, …

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