(This blog was written while Ellie’s work on her show was in progress)
My figurative work has always been narrative in nature. In the studio I riff on the philosophical and/or emotional themes preoccupying me at the moment. It is fitting that Ali, Nell and I chose the title Dwell for this show since each of us dwell, to some extent or other, on the idea of home in our work.
I have several paintings for this exhibit completed to varying degrees and at this point am playing with the concepts of building home or leaving home. I am looking at these as either physical or philosophical/emotional events. Building takes many forms of investment— it’s a pulling together of resources, physical and emotional, however scant or tenuous or generous. Leaving involves an exit as well as a landing—soft or not—in a new, uncharted place. It invites the question of what we pull along (willingly or not) from one (version of) home to another; what is our baggage? What helps us on our way?
We each have emotional work in our lives—our “soul work”, if you may. Mine finds its way into my painting; struggles caught in images. As this year progresses, my puddle-stomping days recede further into the distance and my 17 year old prepares to make the leap into his own life.
As might be expected, some questions are on my mind. How do I navigate this change? How do you let go of a person integral to a home, or of an outmoded idea of what home means? Though not an image for this show (it was whisked away to a private collection) this theme is expressed in certain ways in Catch and Release (below),one of my paintings from last fall. What we pull into our lives is fleeting, and releasing it poses a constant challenge.
Catch and Release
As the spring progresses, we’ll see what other musings come along!