Sunday, February 24, 2008

Transition Exhibition

                                 work in freefall

                                 she jumps, and your heart 
                                 floats like a lost tri-leaf,
                                 shuddering on fall winds
                                 valkyrie cries slash icy air,
                                 flap of wings unfolding,
                                 flames fill burnt heavens
                                 cliff face glows iridescent
                                 black white droplets burst
                                 radiant splatters of blood.

This is a piece I have worked on for months and months.  This is the first time I have integrated the poetry of Jim Larwill into a painting.  You can't see the words in this photo but they move down the silver-blue line and up the red flame.  I like how the words invite the viewer to come closer and move into the work's movement of vertical heights and depths.

It is most appropriate that this is the piece that I am including in our group exhibition entitled "Transition".   As I learn to get out of my own way and paint more from intuition and heart, strange and sublime archetypal energies are released.  I don't want to scrutinize this piece too much cause it says what it needs to say in image, colour, movement, texture and poetry.  I can tell you that my own cancer and the cancer scouring our planet is a big part of this piece, as is the so called healing through burning and radiation.  

As the beat poet John Giorno says, "You gotta burn to shine".  

One of the definitions of Transition is:
Physics - a change of an atom, nucleus, electron, etc., from one quantum state to another, with emission or absorption of radiation.

CHANGE, passage, move, transformation, conversion, metamorphosis, alteration, handover, changeover, segue, shift, switch, jump, leap, progression; progress, development, evolution, flux.

Late Night Thoughts

I started this blog as a way to reveal some of my journey and process as an artist.  I am never really sure who reads this but am always pleasantly surprised when I learn that someone has.
I have met new friends who were inspired by things I have written and reconnected with old friends who have been able to follow the thread of an evolving story from these brief, sporadic entries.
I feel an artist has an obligation to reveal inner visions and struggles to the rest of humanity as a way of evolving and liberating our collective consciousness.  This is not always easy and often feels like walking around naked in public.  Sometimes I want to
write of events and people that affect me deeply but don't feel it is honest to disclose other people's heart matters in a public forum.  The world of Art seems to entwine itself powerfully with the entire life of the one making the art.  Both are affected by every nuance and shift within the artist's psyche and all is recorded in the work, some of which is seen by the public and some of which is not.  There are times when certain works are too raw and close to be exposed immediately and there are times when one
joyfully shares what has danced onto the canvas in an explosion of colours and shapes.

Saturday, February 23, 2008


It was over a year ago now that I started the struggle to form this group of artists.  It was a difficult beginning with many disappointments and what I considered to be "failures" along the way.  As it turned out, those "failures" actually turned out to be small blessings that redirected my path and realigned me with my true intentions as an aritist.  I am now proud to be part of this dynamic group of artists whom continue to grow and evolve as a group and as individuals with unique talents and qualities that we share with each other.  Our upcoming exhibition "Transition" couldn't be more appropriately titled as all of us have undergone our own life challenges this past year and in my own case, Art has been my saving grace.  I feel blessed to have this family of friends and artists to share in the struggles and joys of creation.  We have all decided to put one piece in the show that is "in progress" to allow the viewers a glimpse into the world of the artist's process. This "process" is something rarely seen by the viewer of a finished piece of art.  The sweat and tears that go into making art is extraordinary and I think it is important for people to know how much of an artist's soul goes into his/her work.  Making art changes the way you see things and constantly challenges one's own assumptions and perceptions of the world.

"The instinctive need to transform experience into image is a mysterious phenomenom.  Discussion of it must take place in the realm of philosophy or poetry for it serves no objective function.  Forces are manifested in poems and paintings that do not pass through the circuits of knowledge.  These forces, vital and inexplicable, pass through the circuits of the soul.  They are responsible for the joyful sense of recognition, interior resonance and blissful confirmation that attends the sight of certain paintings."
-Roxanna Robinson


Today my heart is full to bursting and I feel like crying all the time.  In the past two years I have learned to not push this sadness away but to allow myself to feel it fully and it will take me to where my soul needs to be.  So often we judge sadness as "bad" and happiness as "good" when really they are just emotions passing through the body and asking us to notice them and follow where they may lead.  Strong emotions are our soul's way of getting our attention.  I often get so busy in my head; organizing, working, coordinating events, playing out my many roles, that I forget to listen to my heart.  I am learning to listen to my heart more though and it rewards me with profound truths that reveal themselves to me through intuition, emotions and dreams. The language of the internal world is rich with images and sensations that I have always felt a need to transform into images for the outer world.  I am closest to this inner world when I am still, when I am in nature or in the presence of great art or other souls who are in touch with their own inner worlds.  The journey of the artist is one of discovering truth and I am discovering  truth can only be revealed incrementally and only when we have prepared ourselves and are ready for it's blinding light.  For me, Beauty has always served as a compass for truth.  When I can feel Beauty enter my body I know I am in the presence of Truth.

"Beauty is truth, truth beauty, that is all
   Ye know on earth, and all ye need to know."
-John Keats

Wednesday, February 20, 2008


"Longing, felt fully, carries us to belonging. The more times we traverse this path-feeling the loneliness or craving, and inhabiting its immensity-the more the longing for love becomes a gateway into love itself. Our longings don't disappear, nor does the need for others. But by opening into the well of desire-again and again-we come to trust the boundless love that is its source."

"In your light I learn how to love.
In your beauty how to make poems.
You dance inside my chest
where no one sees you,
But sometimes I do,
and that sight becomes this art."

13th centruy Persian mystic and poet

Sunday, February 3, 2008

Fire Portage and Snow Vision

Fire Portage

Snow Vision

These two pieces are still wet and drying in my studio but they are finally finished. I have worked on Snow Vision for almost a year - constantly changing and playing with the light, the brushstrokes, the energy of the piece. I gave up several times and considered the painting a dud, one that just wasn't going to make it to the finished state. Then after setting it aside for months I added a few grays and the painting came to life and said exactly what it needed to say. Same thing with Fire Portage, after struggling for months with the orange, taking it out, putting it back in...I finally added some complementary grays and voila, the orange fire colour was suddenly able to speak it's firey message when surrounded by the solid neutrality of gray. I think I have fallen in love with gray, it's versatility, it's subtle beauty, it's ability to reflect and/or receive warmth and coolness. The winter sky is full of gorgeous grays that now speak of fantastic visions to paint. Isn't it remarkable how long it takes to remove our eyeglasses of assumptions and see what is directly in front of our eyes?

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