Category Archives: Visual Art

Beyond words and photos

Strandbeests

Theo Jansen, Dutch artist and engineer, is creating extraordinary wind-mobilized creatures, strandbeests, perhaps the inspiration for those imagined in Philip Pullman‘s The Amber Spyglass. Jansen has been termed the modern Leonardo di Vinci and if you watch the fore-linked TedTalk “strandbeests,” you’ll see why due to his mathematical equations for self-locomotion as well as sketchbooks. My breath catches and imagination soars as I watch his sand creatures. Enjoy!

Broken & Beautiful

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I never know what I’m going to do in art, whether literary or visual. Yet I’ve recently been inspired by the concept Broken & Beautiful since we all are, one way or another.

One of the TedTalk speakers points out that the chance of you or I existing is 1 in 400,000,000,000, which makes each of us inherently beautiful.

Yet most of us are also broken one way or another and we’ll all experience death and possibly illness and old age. Yet we’re also brand new within seven years, all of our cells replaced, some replicating 10 to the 22nd power every second.

While these numbers are unfathomable to me, I fully grasp how vulnerable and resilient we are.

Though I thought Broken & Beautiful was an original idea, an internet search demonstrated that others are working with this concept. Still, I love the theme and will continue using eggs to explore it.

Why eggs? They’re  gorgeous: their shape, texture and range of interior and exterior colors. They’re also the beginning of life for many species and must be broken for that life to live independently. So I’ve broken and eaten the eggs (yum) and also knit the heart-scarf.

To our beauty and resilience as well as the power of our vulnerability and ways that we’re broken.

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Reacting to Objects: Mindfulness, Tech and Emotion

meaning-maker…and you?

Museum in a Bottle

There’s been a lot of discussion about mindful looking and unplugging in museums of late. By pure coincidence, I’ve been thinking about looking at objects while traveling over the last 2 months, developing an understanding of how mindfulness and technology work together for me to connect emotionally with museum objects.

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The Stars Within

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The tech who drew my blood inspired this sculpture.

Lab techs ensure that needed biological matter is obtained to aid in a diagnosis or that a person is well. Techs usually do this with as little pain and stress to each person as possible.

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Yet, most often they hear things like I hate needles as they collect blood, feces, urine, sputum, with kindness and compassion despite too little appreciation for how critical their work is, or their skill.

This piece is a thank you for lab techs and other medical personnel.

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It started with the disposable tourniquet that I rolled for the arms. The turquoise tourniquet doesn’t show since it’s covered with the purple bandage used to keep gauze in place after my last blood draw. The red heart is bandage from a previous draw.

The yellow dress is the webbing from a bag of lemons while the face and hair are foil that protected a cork.

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Since the yellow webbing wasn’t strong enough to support the weight of the head, I used leftover starred gold wire, which led to the title.

The light varies since it came from shafts of sunlight through the trees.

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As an avid garage sale seeker once said to me, one person’s garbage is another’s treasure!