"Keep me away from the wisdom which does not cry, the philosophy which does not laugh
and the greatness which does not bow before children."
-- Kahlil Gibran
This set of 4, 6 x 6 Gesso Board panels really surprised me.
It was my intention to create a pretty little set of canvases using vintage materials and photos wrapped in big blocks of acrylic. I wanted something raw and rough to compliment the soft color of Robin’s Egg Blue, but beyond that, I had no direction.
As I stared to gather materials for the project, beginning with vintage photographs, I decided to focus on children. I had a fabulous old shot of a 3rd grade classroom that I’d been saving forever, and this project seemed the perfect chance to play with it. I added old children’s school papers and assignments, old nursery rhymes, a broken vintage ruler and - this is the best part - an old circuit board of some kind that I found last year in the desert. As I began to piece it all together, the story began to tell itself.
And it wasn't pretty. As I arranged this and that, I saw a pattern emerging; one that I didn’t sign up for. This was dark, a bit ominous and, if I’m being honest, rather creepy. It was a story of child abuse, that was clear, but why it came out of me, the girl who’s usually all hearts and rainbows, I do not know. But, I went with it. And I have to say, it turns out to be something I’m very proud of.
I hope it tells a story without being obvious, and I hope it’s message is one that will inspire others to get out their old ephemera and see what THEY have to say, because the unintentional story telling is, in my view, the most magical part of creating.