Having Wings is a community-sourced advent anthology created / edited by Amy Bornman (of All Well Workshop), and it contains a drawing I made and words I wrote this advent season. Amy’s thoughtfulness in her creative process and beautiful handsewn creations have been inspiring as I consider my work (“art” and otherwise), and how it intersects with the values by which I hope to live. So when she announced an invitation to participate in this gathering of poems for the hoping, waiting season of advent, I wanted to contribute.
Most of my drawings this year have been unplanned curves filling sketchbook pages, as I try to get outside of a systematic mindset when it comes to making. Searching for the intuition I hope I have, and maybe starting to find it in this practice. After filling untold sketchbook pages with these swirling lines, I started noticing forms that reminded me of art historical Madonna and Child paintings. (A lovely google image search: “abstract madonna and child”.) Continue reading “having wings”
*one year + one month later
I never understood when people said their wedding day was the best day of their lives, until I had such a deeply good day on ours. We were surrounded by all of our family and friends, hosted at the home of friends, ate our go-to Indy fast food, and had a party. There were a lot of people, and a lot of planning went into it, but in the end it felt natural and celebratory. I’d dealt with a lot of anxiety in the year prior, and was nervous that I would be so paralyzed with it that I wouldn’t be able to enjoy the day. But the weather was gorgeous, and I felt so present to the day and its joy. What a gift.
And of course, Andy and I got to stand up and tell our truth – we love each other, and we promise to continue in that love for as long and as deeply as we can.
A couple months ago, I re-read our vows to each other. I think I was a little afraid that the words would be too specific to the people we were then. It’s only been a year, but they way I think about things has shifted; I see differently.
After reading them, I felt buoyed and hopeful, like these things are still true and they are spacious enough to keep walking in together for many years to come.
My friend commissioned these pieces as a gift for her husband; the text was excerpted from Wendell Berry’s poem, “The Country of Marriage“. Though I’ve been putting meditative text drawings and abstract/non-representational pieces next to each other for a couple of years now, this is the first time I’ve created a pair specifically to fit together rather than combining them after the fact. A small opportunity to practice conversation between these two ways of working.
Sometimes our life reminds me
of a forest in which there is a graceful clearing
and in that opening a house,
an orchard and garden,
comfortable shades, and flowers
red and yellow in the sun, a pattern
made in the light for the light to return to.
The forest is mostly dark, its ways
to be made anew day after day, the dark
richer than the light and more blessed,
provided we stay brave
enough to keep on going in.
–Wendell Berry, The Country of Marriage
Part 1, which came second: end of semester / artist statement
In which the art taught me something, like it always does, and that something was a reminder rather than something new. It’s the same lessons – love, be not afraid, trust, stay – over and over again for this self who is by grace becoming a tiny bit more well-integrated.
And here’s part 2, which came first.
“I’m stumbling in pursuit of grace.”