In the middle of the journey of my life,
I came to myself in a dark wood
And the straight way was lost.
Adapted from a translation of Dante's "Inferno," Canto I.
Not exactly lost, and the chronology is off, but it's just that a new, indirect, and wavy way seems to be taking over here. I believe it comes from that life force, the c'hi, that I sense so palpably in my numinous places, and which inspires me in my art life.
Well, I can't be in my numinous places (Norway, Wales, Iceland, Scotland, etc) every minute of the day, so I'm figuring out how to find charged experiences here, at home, in my daily life. And now, at the beginning of a new year, I've started following this barely-intuited way, this wavy, meandering way, in my journal/sketchbook.
I feel a huge burden of guilt over unfinished paintings from the past year and more and this guilt has made it ever harder to return to that unfinished work. So, I'm going back, via this new way, to basics and to joy.
The way appeared one very cold day on my late afternoon walk. Here is what I saw:
I read the message in these lines and now I draw, paint, make marks, collecting my own images, from what I see around me, not just anything my eye happens upon, but scenes and objects that seem charged with a special energy, for whatever reason... and record them in my journal, to find out who... and where... I am. Again.
I'm not making huge pronouncements or plans for now, just going step by wavy step. And I'm developing an awareness for presence of the c'hi in, say, a plate of apples.
It's a happy life.
Pink hyacinth in pot wrapped in pink foil, mixed media on toned paper:
Bowl of nuts with nutcracker, mixed media on toned paper:
Angel drawing after Melozzo da Forli, mixed media on toned paper:
Apples and tangerines on blue plate, mixed media on toned paper:
My new challenge is to be open to charged places and objects and settings near to home. Then, when I get back to Norway this May, I'll be more than ready to receive it!
Happy New Year! May we be filled with energy and joy.