walls

Wall to Wall: A Meditation (Part 1)

Greetings! It’s time for filling you in on what’s happening in the studio! Never enough hours in the day, as they say, but more and more I am finding small bits of time to be down there working. When I am not making daily drawings or small collage pieces, I am working on a couple of much larger pieces….about walls.

Work in Progress (Wall Series no. 1)

Work in Progress (Wall Series no. 1)

Work in Progress (Wall Series no. 1 detail)

Work in Progress (Wall Series no. 1 detail)

I recently started thinking about walls and the ideas that lead to creating walls….and because one thing leads to another, I spun off into thinking about the ideas that come from thinking about walls. If you are from the United States, you will surely know that “wall” is very much in the news these days. My work is not usually motivated from outside references, per se, nor is it overtly political. I work intuitively and the meaning of the piece slowly reveals itself to me through the making. I trust this process….for me, it is revelatory, as the time spent making creates the space for the insights to percolate up to the surface.

So, while I started out thinking about the physical walls built throughout human history (creating physical barriers is certainly a very ancient practice…think Hadrian’s Wall or The Great Wall of China, my thoughts fairly soon turned more meditative. Drawing a wall tiny brick by tiny brick is a delightfully slow and meditative process and I realized it was a metaphor for creating a physical wall, which also must be built “brick by brick”.

Walls are used to separate “us” from “them”, the stranger, the “other”. But while a particular wall got me thinking, I realized that we all build walls and our lives are lived behind the myriad walls of our own making….metaphoric, but in a sense, physical as well, as we must navigate over and around them in our walks through life.

Work in Progress (Wall Series no.2)

Work in Progress (Wall Series no.2)

Wall no.2 WIP detail 1.jpg

So many associations came flooding through, as if, by building my two dimensional wall tiny brick by tiny brick, I was actually doing the opposite and opening the gate in a walled dam to let the water flow. Walls of all kinds can have positive and/or negative connotations depending on the context and indeed, some are absolutely necessary. Boundaries and barriers exist in nature….think of the cell walls in our bodies whose design keeps us healthy and safe from disease and toxins. Others, though are artificial, constructed out of fear and those are often the ones that keep us from experiencing the fullness of life.

While I am in the studio working on these pieces my meditations roamed freely, as the brick walls grow longer and taller. Not quite sure where these meditative drawings will go, but it is a satisfying way to spend the time, believe it or not. The repetition allows one to let go and become one with the rhythm of the mark making . For now, these wall pieces are works in progress….learning and understanding are part of the slow revelation of the process.

Looking forward to spring! It’s been a long, cold winter here in South Dakota, as it has in much of the country. Surely, there will be a warming trend in the next couple weeks! Do stop by the Etsy shop if you have a chance as there are at least 150 items there for your perusal and I add daily drawings and new collage pieces as time permits.

Cheers!