Last month Tyler reached out to me through Instagram and asked if I was interested in collaborating. Life has a sweet way of opening up fun opportunities if one takes the time to reach out and grab them. I knew people who knew Tyler and thought, “Yeah, that would be cool! I wonder what a collaboration with poet and photographer Tyler Knott Gregson would look like?”
The next day I was giving Tyler a tour of our building and found out he had been familiar with my work for years. We shared stories about being artists, kids, making art, the internet, and the building. Standing in the doorway of Nathan Haney’s studio we were talking, sharing and coming up with ideas for this tile collaboration. Tyler was so taken by our building and our plans for an art center that he graciously offered to have this collaboration be a perk for our current fundraiser.
Over the next few weeks I spoke with friends and artists about the various tools I could use to press Tyler’s typewriter font poems into clay. We wanted the texture and feel of hand-typed font, but exaggerated with clay. I found myself stretching beyond my comfort zone. That stretch, that push outside of what is easy and comfortable, is important for artists to do. And probably good for all individuals to do.
Tyler sent me two beautiful poems about art, making, living, and much, much more. I do not know how many versions Tyler wrote before the final ones were sent my way. And it doesn’t seem necessary to tell the world how many versions and sizes of these tiles I attempted before being happy with my piece of the collaboration. But I know that the process and the exploration making a piece of art with Tyler’s poems was a great experience. And I am excited to share it with you!
These poem tiles are one of a kind. The clay version of Tyler’s poems will last a lifetime and are offered at a limited edition of 250 each. Each tile will be decorated differently by me, numbered and signed. And I can’t wait! Our building is making collaborations like this possible. And when we reach our final fundraising goal and keep working and making in the space, more collaborations will take place. Enjoy the poems! Enjoy the tiles! And thank you for supporting art and artists!