Apifera Farm - where art, story, animals & woman merge. Home to artist Katherine Dunn

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Friday, October 09, 2015

Meanwhile, a pig named Cornelia expands her horizons

Cornelia is taming up and now sits for me. She also allows me to plop her on her bum so she is sitting up in my arms while I rub her belly. Day one of that produced much squealing, day two–less, and on day three she started figuring out that all this belly rubbing stuff was pretty nice.

Marcella seems to have an affinity for pigs. Just as she did as a pup, gravitating to the then young piglet Earnest who became her buddy in crime, she seems to enjoy the new piglets too. She came to sit with me the other day while I had a coffee break with the pigs and she sat down with all the piglets about her, sniffing, poking, and climbing on her. She just sat and took it all in like a doting auntie. I caught this image of Cornelia giving her what appears to be a kiss, and it is of sorts, but pig kisses also come with the question,

Is there anything to eat on your lips?

Festive aromatic lovelies

I put up some new lavender stuffed items in the store. I'm smitten by the Sweet Dreams with wings-so simple and perfect for bride, baby or any one walking this life who needs a respite. I won't say the "C" word...okay, Christmas is coming! There are plenty of art cards for all occasions too, including Santa times or peaceful wishes you need to send in the coming months.

Tuesday, October 06, 2015

White Dog will speak, with rabbits I think-the new book begins

"Something told me that if I didn’t break free I would perish."
White Dog. 
The first sentence of my next book.

I have begun my new book. Its been rattling around in my head for many months. I'm not going to say much yet because it is just beginning and evolving. I always get excited to share new projects though. I guess that is true of many artists, especially ones like me who live in the middle of the country and communicate most of the day in a studio with gassy labs and a blind pug, only to be serenaded at lunch by pigs and small statured goats.

So I will share a teeny bit. I know what the book will look like on the outside at this point. I want it to hearken back to my childhood reads, with a linen fabric cover-one color ink drawing on the front. Inside will have mysterious little black/white images, and maybe a center color insert. There will be mystery in this book. Is it non fiction? This is hard to explain. I suppose tot he traditional publishers it would be called fiction. But I prefer to say it will be Apiferian-real stories with eccentricities and possible magic mixed with Nature's spirit.

The physical qualities described above will help begin the initial feel of the writing, and White Dog, aka Benedetto, seems to have the lead voice right now.

But rabbits! Rabbits have entered into me and I have been seeing them all around. So I think they will be pivotal to the story somehow.

This is why writers tend to go mad, I guess. I'm lucky, or maybe cursed, to have to see things in images and words. I sometimes think it must be such a relief to be a writer who never gives images a second thought-in that they know their book will be all text without art to worry about. I thought about making this all text, no art, and who knows...we shall see. Maybe rabbits will do the art for me.

I'm playing with drawing styles as I have time, but must focus on the writing.

Focus? But there is so much glory in the fall air, so many beautiful distractions all around me! I am lucky to be able to have a mid day coffee break amongst so many Misfits, white dogs, wandering pigs and eccentric llamas.

Sunday, October 04, 2015

Sunday Smile Parade with Victor

Victor just smiles, all the time, I can't explain it. But considering his past, it is inspiring that this very crippled goat puts on the best smile voguing show every day for me. I spent time this morning with him, he loves to have my company away from the maddening crowds.

Friday, October 02, 2015

Paco's wings

I don't really feel comfortable explaining what paintings mean-but, I do understand that people like to hear if their is a story behind them. The painting shown here is 'Paco's Dream'.

I have lived with Paco now 9 years and watched and helped him go from misunderstood and non confidant donkey to a little poet. He arrived with a pushy side stemming from lack of handling, and no confidence as he lived in a huge herd of Jacks. Arriving here, he pushed everyone around–me, the animals, the farrier and vets. But I knew there was something yearning to be touched and understood in there. It took a long time, but Paco grew wings. He found his place.

To me, Paco has always been a poet-he writes up in the hidden loft room-The Barrow of Love- of Old Barn that only me, Martyn and two others have been allowed to see. It is wall papered with 1950's pink rose petals.

So his poetry is in this painting  {currently available through RiverSea Gallery.

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Pumpkins! And a pig is named.

There is nothing quite as wonderful as a pumpkin. A glowing orange orb complete with a carrying handle-so impressive. The Pumpkin Patch of Old Souls is ripe with them and I've harvested some for the season's first pumpkin party. Soon we will be celebrating Halloween, and like every year, the largest pumpkin brings out stories and visits from Old man Guinnias and other souls that are buried underneath the pumpkins.

Today the Lower Misfit Village had their party. As you can see from the short video, it was very well attended.

It was Birdie's first pumpkin party in her life-I think she was a bit confused.

Do we roll them around or fight over them? she wondered.

I have been watching one of the black and white spotted gilts [a gilt is a female pig that has not been bred], and I have decided to keep her as a possible therapy pig to join us on the Magical Misfit Mobile. She knows how to sit now [an easy task with pigs] and seems to be the most personable of the group. Eleanor is sweet but very different than Earnest and never really lays for belly rubs-she's a doer, busy, not a relaxer like Earnest. Earnest would be great on the Misfit Mobile but I'm afraid he's just a bit big for it, where as the gilts will stay smaller.

I met a woman artist online and I am in love with her work. Her name is Cornelia O'Donovan and she is British. I told her I might have to name this pig Cornelia and she was very pleased! In my family, having an animal named after you is an honor, but you never know. I tread lightly, especially when I'm telling a person,

"I want to name a pig after you."

Today I spoke to the pig and called her Cornelia O'Donovan, and it seemed to fit. I am not sure how Cornelia O'Donovan the woman will feel about her last name being used, I will ask. But it just has such a British flair, and I even suspect this particular pig has a bit of an accent. I know I did when I spoke to her.

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

The Magical Mobile is getting wings!

I've been busy thanking everyone in the past 24 hours. We reached our Kickstarter goal yesterday, and I am relieved! And thankful. Now the fun really begins. Although there is still 24 hours to support with a pledge if you are interested.

We have a lot of work to do! But I think we are all going to have fun watching this project be birthed, evolve, and see how it expands. I have big plans, and an open heart. Anyone who pledged at a reward level will se those rewards sometime in late October.

I am setting the deadline to have the Magical Misfit {Healing} Book Mobile completed for a June 19th, 2016 launch. We will have a celebration here at Apifera and everyone is invited. There will be Misfits to meet, and the Mobile will be open for people to sit and read to a Misfit.

Stay tuned as details emerge.

For now, I'm kind of relaxing for a day, at least mentally. But I have much to do, including writing that new book!

Monday, September 28, 2015

The Moon....is Hughie's eyeball

I'm sure many of you witnessed the beautiful eclipse last night, The Blood Moon. But here at Apifera, I held Hughie the One Eyed Blind Pug up to the window and said,

"There it is, there is your eyeball."

It is something that many of you probably don't know-the story of The Giant One. While I have shared it here before, through the voice of the former One Eyed Pug, I will share it again in honor of the momentous occasion last night. So here it is, as told by our former pug, who lives on each full moon.

The Giant One
In which The One Eyed Pug I shares a secret of his breed, knowing the audience of this blog is open to the many mysteries of the universe, or at least is not judgmental.

As a young pup I knew my daily life was unique, as I could see much more like a fly. While I was often ridiculed by even the best of friends, I just got used to the stupid comments. People are much worse than the creatures with what they think are humorous pokes at my facial look. "Did you run into a wall?", they'd asked, in that baby talk voice they use on their own fledglings. I got so tired of it. At some point, I just couldn't stand it, and I took to passing gas, silently of course, if they told a joke about my face.

I lived just fine for many years with my over weight eyeballs, until one day, while living in the presence of the chocolate lab named after a pie, I was partaking in a good game of 'run around the tree really fast". As usual, I was slower, but since I am much smaller, was able to trip the big chocolate fellow up. This unfortunately caused him to fall, and I don't know if it was his toe, or a stick, or grass, that grazed my bald eyeball. But whatever it was, my eyeball fell ill, and did not improve. The Two Footers squeezed cool liquids and medicines into my aching orb, but one day later, my eyeball felt so heavy and so strange like it was swirling outside my head. When blood squirted out after one medicine was applied, the Two Footer rushed me into the Medicine Keeper in town.

They shot giant streams of light into my aching eyeball. I knew already what this meant. Our breed is forewarned even before we are born, in dreams and embryonic classes, on what life is often like with our bulging eyeballs. We know that there are many obstacles to our eyes. And we are raised to appreciate every day with out having something run into our eyeballs.

So by the tones of the Two Footer, and all the kisses I was getting, I knew my eyeball was moving onto the Great Place to live amongst stars and other magnificent orbs. This did not worry me. I knew my eyeball would be returning to where it originated, to The Giant One in the night sky. The Two Footers call it a moon, and they say it orchestrates tides of the ocean. The Giant One sends off little eyeballs to all the earthly mother pugs precisely at the time she gives birth.

We pugs don't bother to tell the Two Footers that our eyeballs are born from their moon, because we know most would scoff at it. But I am sharing it here with you, in case you live with a pug, so you can be more respectful of 'full moon' nights. We pugs call it "Giant One Calling" night. For once a month, on the full moon, all pugs instinctively gravitate to the garden, or window seat, and sit amongst the loving shinings of the moon.

And for those pugs who have lost an eye, or are blind, they turn their heads towards the sky, feeling the orbs hitting their heads, and in pride and comfort they know their eyeball is now with the Giant One. It will be nourished by starlight, and in time, it will return to another mother pug, and placed in a young pup to once again see earthly delights.