Thursday, January 31, 2008

Chattin' In The Kitsch- en

Our kitchen goddesses are busy lining up and readying themselves for the March exhibit, but had just enough time away from ironing their going-out gloves to chat with us about what it takes to be fabulous. Martha Mauricia and Zita Barbara reflect for us.
Me: If I followed you around in the grocery store, what would I see you putting in your cart?

ZB: I like gummy bears. I get a small bag almost every time I go to the store. I have certain requirements. My boyfriend knows, and he stays at the store sifting through bags to see which one has the least green bears.

MM: I’m a very down to earth eater. You’d see me putting in goldfish crackers, fruits, steaks, and feta cheese. Every once and a while I put in ice cream or cake.

mmmm, cake.

Me: What is the strongest point of your studies? (both are currently finishing degrees)

MM: I’m a math person. That’s why I studied finance. It’s really a math degree in disguise.

ZB: Writing, art, music, marketing… in general I’m a creative person. I innovate and create wherever I go. To innovate something, a person needs to have a background in a number of things, not just one area in order to think differently and provide a different response to a problem that is normally answered the same way. So, to answer the question, I try to soak it all up when I’m in school, much like a kitchen sponge...

mmmm, kitchen sponges.

Now, while you're sitting on your couch with a bag of chips, these girls are cracking their knuckles and getting ready to whip us all into shape, both mentally and physically.

Me: If you held an influential public office, what is the first thing you would do or change?

MM: I would like to influence the fitness level in cities like San Antonio. I would also do more for the arts. In very intellectual cultures, art plays a big role in society. In American culture, art takes a back seat unless it attracts a mass audience and advertisers can make money off it. Therefore, most of the art we are exposed to is very manufactured to hit a certain crowd or demographic which means a lot of smaller artists aren’t heard.

Me: And Zita Barbara? What are your plans for the rest of this year?

ZB: I’m going to finish up with my second degree this year and look into different graduate programs. I of course, hope to finish my CD this year. I would like to make a music video just because that sounds like a lot of fun.

Me: If you were to challenge a member of the opposite sex to a competition, knowing you could win, what competition would you choose?

MM: arm wrestling. There’s nothing more humiliating than to hear the buddy of a boy say, “You lost to her at arm wresting…

Be forewarned fellas! Be warned!

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

5 Weeks Left!

I had a very productive week last week, despite the flu running its course through my home. My fridgie is up in its almost-full glory (pics soon, i promise!), I got in a decent photo shoot with two of my stunning kitchen goddesses, completed a table, and completed a slew of smaller items. Today I sent off for my new postcards, with the image shown above.

Friday, January 25, 2008

These Shoes Were Made For Preening...

While the rest of the country is locked in a cold cold embrace, here in the southern reaches of the hill country, its a little chilly, a little drizzly, but honestly, NOT BAD. While I miss the health food stores and the easy access to good thai food that I enjoyed in Colorado; warm weather, cheap avocados at the grocery store and long summers make up for it.

I was pleased to get a lot of work done last evening on pieces for the show. I made my 6 foot tall green satin fridgie purty, started on the retro dinner table, made some grocery items and got some accessories (see above) ready for my Kitchen Goddesses. While the exhibit is about the presentation -- its always about the presentation - -- the illusion that everything 'housewifey' is easy, a no-brainer, effortless --- it is also about the women that inhabit the kitchen that really drives the point home.

Women of the 1950s were given rule of the kitchen, and as artillery, given appliances, tv dinners and gadgets intended to make their life 'easier'. At the same time, the expectation was that they would still need to look beautiful, maintain a well-run house and look no further for fulfillment outside of that kitchen.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

"I Run Like The Wind In High Heels"

Spoken like a true lady, our Goddesses are both tough, savvy and sophisticated. They know their way around a kitchen for sure, but can teach you a thing or two about making it in today's dog-eat-dog world. Take Zita Barbara, for instance. In one of our interviews, she tells us how it is.

Me: What plans do you have academically after you graduate from school?

ZB: Going for a PhD. During my graduation ceremony, the lady next to me turned to me and said, “Keep going, don’t stop until you have a PhD… you have the face for it.” Apparently facial features have a lot to do with the ability to reason at higher levels. I don’t mean to brag, but I apply cream to my face everyday to prevent wrinkles and loss of I.Q.

Me: Can you run in high heels?

ZB: I run like the wind in high heels. Let me tell you, there is nothing more painful to a woman than running a mile in heels, besides childbirth.

And there you have it! Our first questions, answered by Zita Barbara. More to come in the very near future!

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Goddesses Unite!

Please welcome the first of two of our lovely Kitchen Goddesses. 22 year old professional model and actress Martha Mauricia Sanders is excited to play the part of a kitchen goddess in the local San Antonio art exhibit!
Background information: Taken by her straight teeth and charm, Martha Mauricia was “discovered” in a dentist chair during a regular teeth cleaning. The dentist working on her teeth noticed her exceptional good looks and outgoing personality. Martha was immediately asked to be a part of a feature in a dental magazine which would be distributed all over the world. Since then she has been invited to participate in a Donald Trump Fashion Show as well as shows for Texan designers. Martha Mauricia started early; at twelve years old she modeled for Sears and starred in a commercial for Kerns Nectar where she discovered a passion for performing. She is currently a senior at St. Mary’s University majoring in Finance and Risk Management.
Future Plans: Martha Mauricia plans to go on to grad school in order to continue her higher education. She looks forward to continuing modeling and acting in order to finance her academic endeavors.
Martha Mauricia's Contact Website:

We are also very lucky to have her sister, Zita Barbara Sanders, an aspiring art student and musician! Talented artist Zita Barbara Sanders is currently working on a C.D. project as a way to explore music and art. She plans to attend grad school after graduating from St. Mary's this spring. She is a double major in marketing and management. For moreinformation about her art, look on her webpage:

Monday, January 21, 2008

Working It....

Over the weekend, I found a trove of great fabrics and steals at a local thrift store. One extra-large sized pink velour robe, a little on the worn side to ever be worn, found a new dignified role as one of my pieces. Witness: The Ironing Board. (I'll think up a clever name soon)

Sexy pink velour, racy leopard print racing stripes and sultry black velvet legs. If I actually ironed anything, this would be the perfect board for me.
I'm gathering my fabrics and supplies to get ready for working on the first of the kitchen goddess dresses. I have details about 2 of my goddesses, which I will post here tomorrow!

Friday, January 18, 2008

Dressing The Goddesses....

Today I met with two prospective Kitchen Goddesses, Mauricia and Zita. Both beautiful and smart girls living and working in San Antonio, they will wear the shoes and walk the path of our beloved 50's Kitchen Goddess. I am starting work in the next couple of days on Zita's beautiful dress, which I can't wait to create! I've got my vintage 50s patterns that I snagged this weekend at the fabric shop. (click on the image above to get a close-up) They all look so festive! The only thing missing from this is a platter of salami rolls!
I will be posting much more on our first two goddesses here shortly!
For your enjoyment, check out some of the 'spoken word' our girls will be sharing with you. This is based off a real article, printed in a 1954 home ec textbook, of which many of us have previously heard of, if, for no other reason than to laugh hysterically.
How To Be A Good Wife (quick excerpt--- you'll want to attend the opening to hear it all, spoken with gusto!)
Have dinner ready. Plan ahead, even the night before, to have a delicious meal, on time. This is a way of letting him know that you have been thinking about him and are concerned about his needs. Most men are hungry when they come home and the prospect of a good meal are part of the warm welcome needed....

Monday, January 14, 2008

Going Grocery Shopping!

While my husband is off in the wilds of Florida doing a wilderness survival course with Tom Brown, I'm busy navigating the jungle of the fabric store ... tables heaped up with out-of-season prints, polyester from my childhood (still ugly) and reams and reams of cutesy kid-targeted flannel (and those moms also wearing the Winne-The-Pooh sweatshirts). I'm working through my grocery list, one processed food item at a time!
Mmmmmm! Mystery meat! Could it be rolled up pastrami on a bed of iceberg lettuce? Or maybe something sitting a little too far back in my retro fridge since Thanksgiving... And this? Sushi? A bite of ham? Maybe some tuna? Or canned salmon, maybe....
Just wait until I get to the fun stuff! I have a ham to 'bake', my fabulous problematic cake, devilled eggs, pickes-on-a-stick....
I photographed the gallery space I'll be using for this installation, and I spent part of the weekend doing measurements and planning for my other pieces that I will build for the exhibit. While my 5 foot tall green satin fridge looks a little box-like to me, i think once I give it some softness and depth, I will like it better. For now though, its sitting on a piano-dolly, scaring the dogs.

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Calling All Kitchen Goddesses....

If you are a kitchen goddess at heart, or have a love for the nostalgia of the 50s or life before the microwave … and would like to volunteer to participate in a very cool art exhibit in March, please call me! I am creating a multi-media exhibit that will also feature living, breathing Kitchen Goddesses, that roam the exhibit in character, offering conversations to viewers on what it would be like to be a retro housewife of the 50s.
Breathe life into a character you create, and become a Kitchen Goddess!

The exhibit dates that I need Goddesses for are:
March 6 -9th and March 15th, at Fiber Artspace, in the Blue Star Art Complex.

Please contact me at:
Suchil Coffman
210.807.0645 or

Wednesday, January 9, 2008

Kitchen Goddess Steps Back In Time.....

‘The Kitchen Goddess Goes To Work’, multi-media installation
Contact: Suchil Coffman-Guerra,

November 30, 2007 – Walking into a Kitchen Goddess installation is a lot like stepping back in time, that is, if nostalgia is covered in leopard spots and Technicolor fur. Created entirely out of textiles in uncommon arrangements, the Kitchen Goddess exhibit will come to life again during Women’s History Month, in a 2nd-floor gallery at Blue Star Art Complex called Fiber ArtSpace. Up for the first week of March 2008, entering the Kitchen Goddess exhibit will be a trip back to the 1950s, when women had perfected the art of homemaking. This is a visual representation of that world, complete with living Kitchen Goddesses to narrate you through a day in their lives, as you walk through their household, and come out the other side, into the cool, color-coordinated multi-tasking kitchen that belongs to the modern-day working woman that has it all.
Originated in 2005, the Kitchen Goddess concept is a visual project that local artist Suchil Coffman-Guerra leapt upon when asked to curate a nationally juried show in Denver, Colorado. It grew into a project that had dozens of Colorado artists involved in; creating textile pieces, walls, and an entire life-sized kitchen goddess environment to make a subtle statement about women’s roles during the 50s. The current exhibit in San Antonio, Texas, will expand upon the original idea and begin the exploration of women’s path from the kitchen to the workplace, and how, in some cases, they are the same.
The use of textiles in this exhibit, once commonly regarded as a craft medium, or ‘women’s work’, is used as a jab at convention, using the materials in unconventional ways to make a statement both about how textile arts have been regarded as crafts rather than an art form, and also how women have been able to elevate the mundane into an art form.
Suchil Coffman-Guerra has shown her work across the US, including the Denver Museum of Contemporary Art, the Fort Collins Museum of Contemporary Art and the Texas Artist’s Museum. She has curated exhibitions in Colorado and facilitated artist career development workshops for local artist organizations.
‘The Kitchen Goddess Goes To Work’ will be on display at Fiber ArtSpace, at the Blue Star Art Complex, in Building D, #202. The exhibit will run March 6- 11, 2008. For more information, contact: or 210.807.0645.

Tuesday, January 8, 2008

Cake, Anyone?

So, I'm working with the cake. Trying to make it behave. I originally imagined that it would be a lemon chiffon cake, but kept finding yards of lilac and pink fabric at every turn. With a sigh, I abandon my original goals, and start trying to dress the cake. Its like trying to stuff an unruly and nap-deprived 2-year-old into dress clothes though, and tights that don't fit. Maybe you've seen the unfortunate foundation that was fondly dubbed 'The Melting Cake' --- but this is one beast that may have won. I set it down for today, even though I'm way behind schedule. Nothing good ever came though, from forcing a cake before its done baking! I am having better luck with the Toasta, and with my Bad Eggs. Check out the 'Busy In The Kitchen' photo album to see some of the things I've been working on!

If this blog is new to you, then I'll explain. I am creating an installation where all the pieces are created using fabrics, furs, and all manners of textiles. 'The Kitchen Goddess Goes To Work' is an exhibit about the evolution of the 1950s housewife as she gradually leaves her post by the mixing stand and ventures out into the workworld. It is intended to be a tounge-in-cheek look at women's roles in the kitchen and how it's all changed.