Friday, September 18, 2009

Shadows, Dancing

It comes blundering over the
Boulders at night, it stays
Frightened outside the
Range of my campfire
I go to meet it at the
Edge of the light.
---Gary Snyder, How Poetry Comes to me

"Such is our way of thinking--we find beauty not in the thing itself but in the pattern of shadows, the light and darkness, that one thing against another creates." Jun"ichiro Tanizaki, In Praise of Shadows

"The quality that we call beauty, however, must always grow from the realities of life, and our ancestors, forced to live in dark rooms, presently came to discover beauty in shadows, ultimately to guide shadows towards beauty's end."
------- Jun'ichiro Tanizaki, In Praise of Shadows

The Quebec Canada artist, Linda, whose work can be found here,
uses delightful light and shadow to stage and compliment her imagery of text and books.
When new artists begin, they often see shadows as dark gray or black. As they develop their observations and gain insight they come to realize that shadows have color or reflected light. Something seems to be flickering and shimmering in the dim half light. As artists become more attuned to observing nature, and light, the mysteries and secrets of shadows are revealed. As an artist myself, who loves contrast and black and white, shadows can soften the edge between light and dark and be a transition. This "visible darkness" brings balance and harmony to the work. Do you lean towards the light, dwell in darkness, or dance in the shadows in between?


Lisa said...

Donna, The mixed media piece is fabulous...i love the way you've incorporated the clay crows.. you're pieces are always such a priviledge to view. Your work in the black and white zine is just stunning.

Blue Sky Dreaming said...

The words "visible darkness" speak so beautifully of our common everyday shadows...not common at all! Reflective light and transitions of edges are more words to best describe the world of shadows...thank you Donna for your words.

M said...

I love the way you develop your posts integrating poetry and quotes with your prose and visuals. They are beautifully wrapped presents for the reader.

The Artist Within Us said...

Shadows are a thing of beauty, especially when the sun filters through a tree and the shadows end up on my kitchen pantry door dancing whenever a breeze lingers about.

I was going to use one of my lines on shadow play for my last post but decided to save it for another time; here is just a portion of it: Shadows of light, breath shallow beats, whispering of the cruelties we encountered in childhood . . .

I am aware of Linda's work and find her usage of natural light most impressive. She has another blog where her images are more haunting and mysterious.

Enjoy the weekend

layers said...

Thank you again for your wonderful comments. They mean so much to me.

layers said...

Egmont, your words about Shadows and childhood are very haunting.

RosieK said...

mysterious - lovely words and images - - the stones reminded me of my land art course and being on the beach again - and thank you for your comment on my blog

bob Cornelis said...

I've always found shadows more interesting visually than highlights, so much of my work tends toward the dark. Perhaps it's that we're interested in peering into the darkness to see what is revealed - light areas seem to reveal themselves so maybe are less engaging.

Your piece is wonderful - so much for the eye to wander over.

Tess Kincaid said...

Beautiful collage. The light piece near the top almost looks like a pane of glass.

Mick said...

I do ... I lean, I dwell, I dance!

ArtPropelled said...

I enlarged your collage to see the details more clearly and there are so many elements that I love.....The twiggy branches at the top of the collage, the clay crows, the layers, the script and the cracked creamy surface.
I enjoyed Gary Snyders words too.

John M. Mora said...

Your post and art illustrate and illuminate and make us think - shadows require mastery if done beyond feeble attempts to make bunny ears in a flashlight"s shadow.

Lisa Ursu said...

That poem, "How Poetry Comes to me" is absolutely beautiful, as is your post.
I love your collage. The clay birds, and their positioning in your piece. Crows are magical messengers.
Thank you for sharing.

.Trudi Sissons said...

Lovely post/writing and collage! Just my opinion, but I think this is one of your stronger pieces - perhaps your thoughts of shadows made it so?
Always a pleasure to see your latest work Donna.

studio lolo said...

I'm so glad you stopped by so I could come and repay the visit. Your work resonates with me on many levels, especially if there are crows/ravens involved.
You remind me of one of my oldest dear friends who I have always referred to as my first spiritual teacher.
She always counters, 'but who's the student and who's the teacher?' because we get so much from one another. And by 'oldest' I mean we've been friends for a long time ;)


Donna, your work and your words are wonderful! Thanks for sharing!

shayndel said...

I like the the white 'dancing' fibers in the rice paper and the quiet black branches of the trees, like opposites of each other and at the same time connected.
A few days ago I took "In Praise of Shadows" down from a shelf and have been reading passages here and there!
I'm happy to find the syncronicity in so many of your expressions to things I am thinking about.
The clay crows are cute! (maybe cute isn't the right word, but you'll see when you come to Japan, you may begin to use that word more:-))
Happy today.

layers said...

Dear jgy (found in Japan), since you are reading In Praise of Shadows, you probably read the passage where he describes the differences between Japanese rice papers and Western papers... beautiful writing.

Lucky Dip Lisa said...

I enlarged this and it did not dissapoint! I love the crackle effect you use, it leads my eye through your piece and reminds me of time worn walls, the things they have seen etched on it's face.

Great to come back and see you again, thanks for your visit and well wishes!

Anonymous said...

Stunning work..that first one..and awesome photographs to follow...Such intriguing visual candies and poetic words..

Seth said...

Such interesting thoughts about shadows and light. And I love your choice of artwork and photos you have included here as illustration.