It has been nice having my “mojo” back with respect to creating art again. Tonight I completed and submitted my third application in three days for an art-related event. Above is a quick concept sketch for the fourth “Heaven and Earth” show at Carkeek Park put on by CoCA Seattle. I’ve also submitted for “Art Interruptions” through the City of Seattle and the “EDGE Program for Visual Artists” through Artist Trust. If by some stroke of magic I end up getting accepted to all three, I will definitely be a busy bee! Below is my artist statement I submitted for the “Heaven and Earth” show:
Dreamcatchers originated with the Ojibwe nation long ago and saw widespread adoption by many others—both Native and non-Native—during the Pan-Indian movement in the 1960s and 1970s. Since then, they have often been associated with New age groups and individuals through cultural appropriation. Initially, the Ojibwe meant them to be temporary constructions; the willow would dry out and the tension of the sinew would cause it to collapse. For them, the circular shape honored the sun and the web paid respect to Spider Woman. I find that the repetition within the web design mimics the patterns we are surrounded by every day. Our lives are measured by the rhythmic cadence of minutes, hours, days, weeks, and years. The dreamcatcher can be viewed as a static design or be seen as a circle that is either expanding or contracting. Taking this symbol, with its rich history and references to the natural world, and placing it in an outdoor setting makes me think of something written by the late Jon Gierlich, who was an extremely influential instructor of mine at Cornish. “I WILL GO OUT AND COME BACK. I WILL GO BACK AND NOT COME OUT.” Viewed through this lens, a dreamcatcher (or any other work of art) is both finite, as a constructed physical object, and unending, through the ripples it sends out to those who experience it while it exists.