Are You An Artist/Hoarder?

Junk Hauler

Most of the artists I know are, to put it politely, “pack-rats.”  If we decide we like a new medium, we buy it in bulk to save money.  God help us if we are collage or fiber artists; no button nor scrap goes unsalvaged.  “Able Removal Service” adverstises that hoarders are their specialty– you can call them if your treasures are becoming your trap.

I find that, before I embark upon a new piece of work, I need to tidy my studio.  Once it got so messy that I even took before and after photos:

 I wish I could say that it’s still that tidy, but at least it’s close, and I can work there efficiently.

I recently visited my artist friend, Harriet Kohn.  She is a wonderful fiber artist, and her studio is a work of art.  I have heard rumors about the Smithsonian-like basement of another fiber artist we know (who shall remain unnamed) which is the laboratory for incredible, exquisite works of art.  I hear that she knows exactly where everything is. 
Rembrandt was a compulsive collector.  For much of his life, he suffered from financial troubles.  Part of his problem was that he spent a lot of money on antiquities and rare objects of natural beauty.  He couldn’t stop himself, even when he couldn’t pay the rent.  In the end, his collection was auctioned off.
Why do we need to hang onto stuff?  What irrational stuff do you, as an artist, hang onto?  Do you flourish better in chaos, or order?

One response to “Are You An Artist/Hoarder?

  1. I’m reminded of the Albert Einstein quote, that goes something like this:
    *Is a messy desk is the sign of a cluttered mind, that what is an empty desk the sign of?*
    Pic of Albert’s desk:


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