Art+Culture Merida

Inside the Artist Studio

2015-12-12 20.51.15The world of an artist is unfettered by convention. Rules are self-imposed, boundaries non-existent, and time is simply a concept. The artist studio is both lover and nemesis—where nothing is judged; where all thought and action is challenged.

In describing the sacrifices an artist makes in order to create a work of art, Carl Jung said, “Every creative person is a duality or a synthesis of contradictory aptitudes. On the one side he is a human being with a personal life, while on the other side he is an impersonal, creative process…The artist is not a person endowed with free will who seeks his own ends, but one who allows art to realize its purposes through him.”

2015-12-06 13.06.17Within this world, it is the studio that becomes the sanctuary, where imagination and experimentation commune with silence and contemplation. Sometimes the communion is combative. At other times, the process of creation is like water in a river that has breached its banks and has nowhere to go but ‘out’.

“95% of the relationship I have to my work is through process” – artist David Altmejd

The studio can be humble, impermanent, wild. It can be monumental. It can also be ‘home’. A sketch on the wall, a collection of found objects on a shelf, a pile of precious junk in the corner—all are cues to a language only the artist speaks. Yet it’s a language we long to understand. We want to share something beyond what we see; a story, inspiration, the anguish and failure. We want to step inside the mind of the artist, if just for a moment, so that we may see into his or her world. And perhaps come away with something we never had before.2015-12-06 13.07.30

Once again, the Merida English Library will host a one day open studio tour of over 25 national and international artists with studios in Merida. This self-guided Artist Studio Tour is a unique opportunity to meet and talk to the artists, and takes place on Saturday, February 20th, 2016.

For participating artists and information on tickets, go to The images featured here are from the studio of Joseph Kurhajec.


In October 2012, I drove 6,800 kms with my artist husband, Ric Kokotovich (, and my dog Iggy, to spend 6 months in our adopted city of Merida. Leaving the fast paced world of Calgary behind, I packed my books, art and entrepreneurial spirit, and set off to explore what lay beyond the borders that had become my life. In October 2013 we hit the road south again, hoping to find out what ‘living the dream’ really means. This is my adventure.

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