Saturday, May 7, 2011

Rolling in the Deep

STRATA, hand painted collage papers, scroll

There is a popular song out now by Adele titled ROLLING IN THE DEEP. I like those words.
My last blog post was about searching for meaning in our art by becoming more aware of our likes and interests, and making lists. Rolling in the Deep is about delving further into our depths. I believe that as artists go deeper into their inner self, these self discoveries will lead to more personal expression as their create their art works.

INNER EXCAVATION: Explore Your Self Through Photography, Poetry, and Mixed Media by Liz Lamereux. This wonderful book is filled with exercises, activities, and inspirational writing to help the artist discover more about themselves. You can find this book and others here at
"You have to find where you are, in order to figure out where you want to go." - Liz Lamereux

In the book, there are a number of artist contributors. Judy Wise is one of them. She reveals what inspires her, what nurtures her, how she finds her creative voice. The above piece is limestone clay on braced panel with stones. You can find her creative website here and her wonderful blog here.

SPILLING OPEN: The Art of Becoming Yourself by Sabrina Ward Harrison. This is a visual journal of the artist when she was young, as she embarked on her journey of self-discovery.

One task we can do is ask our self the question: Who or What inspires us? This can be artists, authors, poets, music, songs, books or movies. I remember years ago, exactly when I discovered poetry and my favorite poet. I saw the foreign film IL POSTINO (The Postman), about a postman in Italy who wanted to write poetry and show his poems to Pablo Neruda. At the end of the movie is the poem POETRY. A strong feeling of emotion, appreciation, and connection washed over me.

And it was at that age__Poetry arrived
in search of me. I don't know where
it came from, from winter or a river.
I don't know how or when,
no, they were not voices, they were not
words, nor silence,
but from the street I was summoned,
from the branches of night,
abruptly from the others,
among violent fires
or returning alone,
there I was without a face
and it touched me.
---- Pablo Neruda

There are 2 artists who I connect to in a powerful way. Their work affects me in ways that I can't express in words. When I see their work, I feel their emotional personal expression reaching out to me, enveloping me and drawing me in.

Anselm Kiefer's art is influenced by his German heritage of World War II and the history of war and the Holocaust and is rich with references to writers and poets. I am also attracted to his use of raw textures.

For Hannelore Baron (1926-1987), making art was a meditative form of experience and communication. She escaped Hitler's Germany and the Holocaust as a young child. Her life was framed by tragedy. She sought to create 'the message' in her art: an imagery of suffering and human hope.

Sweet Darkness
Give up all other worlds
except the one to which you belong.
Sometimes it takes darkness and the sweet
confinement of your aloneness
to learn
anything or anyone
that does not bring you alive
is too small for you.
---- David White

And on a lighter note, my favorite movie character is from the movie THE BIG LEBOWSKI --
the Dude. I love whacky movies and quirky characters and the Dude is certainly an odd ball...

"Let me explain something to you. Um, I am not 'Mr. Lebowski'. You're Mr. Lebowski. I'm the Dude. So that's what you call me. You know, that or, uh, His Dudeness, or uh, Duder, or El Duderino if you're not into the whole brevity thing." ---The Dude