#2 - boundaries - winter solstice 2008

| No Comments

"Leave the door open for the unknown, the door into the dark. That's where the most important things come from, where you yourself came from and where you will go." Rebecca Solnit

Zoe reminded me yesterday about how my solstice project originated from a love of Advent calendars. She asked me to buy one and send it to her at school. Last night she had been to a meeting where they lit one candle and read inspirational quotes.  The idea of that simple light reignited my desire to draw. I sketch the dark and light and mix it with my pots.

Talking with Zoe (who is in her first year of college) reminds me of the transformative experiences I had at 19. For her it is new to leave home and meet kids from so many different backgrounds. It forces her to reexamine what she has always taken for granted. I launch projects hoping for some kind of evolution in vision or expression, but I don't know what it is until it is accomplished. I am constantly trying to shift the boundaries of my work, subtly altering palettes of clay, glaze, firing, and drawing. The job description of the artist requires opening doors and inviting in the unfamiliar, to shift boundaries so that old territory is seen afresh. We make or arrange or collect or describe so that daily life becomes novel.

In this solstice series I open my mind to the dark nights. As in every year, I am shocked and surprised by how early the sun sets.  I have to push every single evening to get out the door for that dog walk when there is still light in the sky. As patterns shift with the season I am looking into the dark for that unknown spark of new work.

J. Robert Oppenheimer said, "live always on the edge of mystery--the boundary of the unknown."

Leave a comment