“Legacy” has been extended for another week. If you haven’t been out to the Gallery, there is still time! Check my website for details…. The response has been wonderful and I look forward to sharing old pictures of some of the places that I painted for this exhibition in the upcoming book on the series. Much thanks to generous family members. Stay tuned!
A conversation I had with a friend during a chance meeting at the grocery store left me thinking about mortality, divinity and our place as creators in the Universe. The term ‘inspiration’ is a good place to start to look at human beings and our ability to create something from nothing, like mirrors of the Consciousness from which we are created.
Can we really take ownership of those flashes of insight – the drive to create something or follow in its process?
I do not think that I am driven like some artists to paint for painting’s sake. Painting is a form of communication for me. I am compelled to tell a visual story of the meeting of my own inner landscape and the landscape of the place I have experienced.
So where does it all come from? The ideas, the decision to drive this way instead of that, arriving at just the right time of day. Are we alone responsible for the creativity that comes through us? Or is that the wrong question entirely? As I have gone older, I have become increasingly aware of how short life is and how we do ourselves a disservice not to allow into us whatever it is we have the opportunity to do – to create.
The work for the series “Echoes” is drawing to a close. There are only a few paintings remaining to be completed and preparation for the book is in its final phase. It is and has been a privilege to be given a window into the lives of those who lived in the places in the series and it is something that I hope I can continue. Their generosity has allowed me to contribute something and actually learn a lot about myself. However, the question of how this will evolve has been on my mind for some time. When my health kept me out of the studio last winter, I began to wonder where to go next and if I was doing the right thing. The old buildings fascinate me and reach into deep, dark places. The history is there, and I became a part of that history, but, what does it mean?
It seems I like to make decisions more than let things happen. As soon as I began to let go and realized that there are some things I cannot control, I let my houses whisper to me again, and everything changed. The biggest thing was returning to the Livingstone/Stephens house and accepting the challenge that became “Waiting“. I thought it was beyond me to take this on, but, once I sat in the house, it was no longer up to me. Doing it was all I could think about.
Turning off that connection with who and what we really are is damaging. Doing what you think you are supposed to do rather than following your heart is a dangerous game. Life is too short. Perhaps we are merely expressions of Something unknowable or Nothing that is beyond our comprehension. (Read that carefully!)
In any case, the Divine is always around us, in us, and the gift of life is about the kinds of experiences that we as human beings can have. For some, it is to experience the World as deeply and as richly as possible, for others it is to engage with it or be a parent, co-creating with Nature. For me, it is the ability to create form, to make something that wasn’t in the World before.
I love that a Gothic Church reminds me of tall and ancient trees. I love to see the architecture of these places, order in the chaos. The structures I have spent the last two years with are mirrors of a mirror. I am inspired by interiors, rooms – the rooms within ourselves. The places where we keep our secrets and what we long for. Shelter. Sanctuary.
This post was supposed to be a little less personal, more of a commentary. Instead, it ended up asking more questions than it answers. I am not sure those questions can be answered, but, in the pursuit, I find purpose. I allow myself to recognize in it many Paths. In it, I am seeing the evolution I seek and I am reminded of the gift it is to experience form and have the ability to create it.
I hope for my reader, perhaps it will inspire you to seek out your own questions.