phantasma goria exposed by shadows dissolving into borrowed wings eclipsed by casting out light
I’m behind a few weeks on posting my contributions to the Kick-About, but this is the most recent, a collage inspired by Sheila Legge’s Phantom of Surrealism, above. Masked in roses, she was photographed in a white dress and gloves, surrounded by pigeons in Trafalgar Square, a performance inspired by a painting by Dali.
I was drawn to the statuesque quality of the photo, particularly given the location, and I can never resist using birds in a collage.
And of course we all don our own masks–some are just more obvious than others.
falls apart becomes its opposite expanding into stories
becomes its opposite days into nights into stories the sun intersecting the moon
days into nights future and past the sun intersecting the moon enlarging the horizon
future and past the surprise of delight enlarging the horizon to leave is to arrive
the surprise of delight mind to eyes to leave is to arrive everywhere
The Kick-About prompt this time was a painting by Brian Rutenberg, Low Dense, above. The colors immediately made me think of Monet, which made me think of the grids I did based on Monet’s work. And so I decided to do a grid.
This is a very intense way to look at art, and I learned a lot from it as I not only did some of Monet’s paintings, but an entire book of other artists for The Sketchbook Project. The subtleties of color are amazing when you look closely at them. Rutenberg clearly has an eye for color.
And my second pantoum for the week. Abstract, like the art.
You can see my work with Monet here and here. And my Sketchbook Project book, Art I Like, here.
that song that your words called into my mind, that song is like a lost world, just images in fragments, suspended like a raincloud without rain, a weight that refuses to dissipate–I can almost feel the memory but it won’t land, it keeps circling through the things that aren’t quite there–like a bird call I can’t locate, disembodied wings hovering invisible inside my head
I realized immediately that I had seen Lotte Reiniger’s work before when I clicked on the link from the Kick-About prompt. It did not surprise me to hear her say, “I could cut out silhouettes almost as soon as I could manage to hold a pair of scissors.” Her work is, yes, “astonishing”.
Me? I never had that dexterity, not even when young. I also don’t work in film, which was Reiniger’s medium. So how to respond to this prompt?
I was going to work with simple bird silhouettes, but was unhappy with the ones I made myself. Once again, I had constructed a 3-D collage environment with cardboard pieces inside a paper bag. I decided to use photos of bird silhouettes, and hang them from strings at the top so they would move.
I used circles to enclose the bird forms so I could put different photos on each side–the images would change when the dangling circles turned.
Using the ceiling fan to create more movement, I began to take photos.
You can read more about Lotte Reiniger here, and see her extensive filmography here,
I am still waiting for clarity– sometimes I think about the things I can’t see and I wonder how to place them inside my mind–
Out of the dark and still I am dreaming of colors liquid currents of sound moving in all directions between the gaps–
Do our visions swim cataracted with refractions– flooding the invisible barriers of the portals into our eyes?
As I told Phil, this week’s Kick-About prompt, fundus photography, was made for my watercolor mandalas. First, photographing the inner eye naturally makes for roundness, and the liquid state calls for watercolor to represent it.
I did 4 watercolors and embroidered on 2 of them. If I exaggerated the colors a bit, well, my eye often does the same.
The prompt for the Kick-About this week is a quote from Murakami’s novel IQ84 where Aomame talks to a cold and silent moon. No one could unlock the heart of the moon, she thinks. She asks the moon some questions: The moon did not answer. But maybe she is only projecting onto the moon a reflection of herself.
keeping her motives to herself, she likes to move beyond the in between
going where after is before all over again
I’m always photographing the moon. I decided to go through my archives and make some postcards from some of my pictures. The results proved to me, once again, that if you take enough photos, some are bound to look good.
I then consulted with the collage box Oracle. The Oracle knows the moon well.
what time is it inside your dreams? step through, not around– inside the journey is your destination– no other place but right now
I didn’t plan it that way, but the sequence of photographic messages from the Oracle were easily constructed into a series of Japanese-style poems.
flow into the light by exploring the patterns of the universe
You can’t just ask questions; you also need to keep listening for the reply.
I can almost hear them echoed on repeat through my bones spiralled gifts collected in the overlap of landsea the fluid movement that follows after what hasn’t happened yet cleansing
sheer sound waves etched in side winds calling I can see them sometimes—doubled visions currents vibrating against a blurred sky gyring like the shadow of a raptor glimpsed briefly between the singing of reflected light sailed whole
In my mind the Prospect Cottage prompt from the Kick-About, below, intersected with the Otherworld of Brendan’s earthweal prompt and then merged with my shells, collected over years of visits to the ocean. The shore is where I lose myself and meet “Not Here” and Prospect Cottage felt like it was a portal into that suspension of the normal framing of time and space. “Like landing on the moon,” as the narrator said.
Most of my shells are still in storage, but I’ve carried some weathered whelks along with each move I’ve made, both to look at and draw. The spirals sing, and bring the sea to me. I drew three of them from different angles on the same page–first pencil, then colored pencil, then with a brush in gouache.
I decided to add grounds. It’s not always easy to tell when you’ve gone too far, but I think I definitely did so with the colored pencils. I may take an eraser to the ground to fade it so the shells don’t get so lost. I was trying to capture the garden of Prospect Cottage.
The pencil drawing was impossible to photograph well, but I like the weathered effect. I wrote words around and connecting the shells, which you can see better in the close up. These are quotes from the video interspersed with my own observations. This one has exactly the feeling I wanted, of secret messages, indecipherable voices on the wind.
The painted shells–it felt so good to get my gouache out of storage and paint with it again!–captures the colors I was feeling from both prompts–a sense both of otherness and belonging, of being just exactly in the right place without time.
Carapace— who speaks?—carapace— dream landscape indigo blue paths going from nowhere into nowhere else.
A shelter?– a support?–cosmic tree growing up and up with turtles all the way down to infinity…
Sarah at dVerse asks us to consider the word blue. I did have a dream with a disembodied voice repeating “carapace”, and used it as inspiration for the shells I painted for the Kick-About prompt “Museum Wormarianum”. The dream was saturated in blues.
Both Nina and I have painted and drawn and photographed turtles and tortoises many times at memadtwo. They are wonderful–and need I say? endangered–creatures, believed by some cultures to hold the earth, and all life, on their backs.
And here’s some classic blues performed by the Turtle Island String Quartet.
a handless glove, a stone visage. A blue orb planted with life. Dust seeds blown by cosmic winds.
Look backward to see the future. Ruins of visions. Monumental doors to nowhere. The detritus of humanity. Is this all that we wish to leave behind?
The Kick-About prompt for this week is de Chirico’s enigmatic painting “The Song of Love”, above. The collage I did evolved from a lot of other ideas, merging with Merril’s quadrille prompt at dVerse to use the word seed, and Brendan’s prompt at earthweal to write Songs of the Earth Shaman.
2 A Meditation or Maybe a Prayer
for those who ask and those who don’t answer. For those who always make way and those who have never been found. For what we know and refuse to acknowledge. For what stands in the center of what we think we believe. For what remains when faith has fallen apart. For the times that we begin again and the times that seem to have no ending. For what we hold against others and what we keep to ourselves. For the impossible and the improbable and all the borders we draw to keep from finding out.
Listen. I am waiting for you to come home.
I needed to consider this seemingly unsolvable riddle that is human life on earth from more than one side.
“You were once wild here. Don’t let them tame you.” –Isadora Duncan
presence, breath, the mystery of the body– here and now, never once upon a time– wild eternity
full of what is—translating and transforming each step through the labyrinth that is you– synchronal, alive
This is a Kick-About prompt (the quote from Isadora Duncan) that I never posted. I had an idea to do collage illustrations, but the photos of Isadora dancing made me want to try to capture them in gestural drawings.
I haven’t used pastels in a long time, but I can see why Degas chose them so often to render his dancers. The body becomes transformed by dance, lighter and more transparent. Otherworldly.
For NaPoWriMo, and also linking to the dVerse prompt from Grace, The Body & Poetry.
Back when the musical “Hair” came out, some astrologers grumbled that it wasn’t really the Age of Aquarius yet. But what did we care? We were tired of the world as it was, ready for Peace Love and Understanding.
chaotic stillness watching from the whorled center for new beginnings
During 2020 there were rumblings once again online about the REAL Age of Aquarius finally showing up. I was skeptical to say the least.
all those lost patterns– I collect them in my mind, in new rotations
It seems we had the Age of Aquarius skewed, not only in time. Yes, it’s a total tearing down and rebuilding. But it’s going to require hard work. Taking a lot of drugs and wearing tie-dye and listening to songs about love won’t do it.
all impermanence— no matter which way you turn the path continues
Can we change our entire approach to living together, not only with each other, but with the earth, its creatures, its landscape, its elements? We need to if we want to survive.
giving myself hope inside my dark wanderings– a world of wonder
When Phil asked me to choose this week’s Kick-About prompt, I thought immediately of The Age of Aquarius, because I’ve been turning over in my mind the hope that it might be real, that humanity can change. I always loved the music posters of the “Hair” era, and used them as inspiration for my neon colored paintings.
I’m looking forward to seeing all the other responses next week.