Sunday, July 23, 2006
Assemblage in Progress: "Remember"
It has certainly been a productive week, I've completed 3 assemblages and an optical lense necklace and have very nearly completed this assemblage I've been working on for a couple of weeks now. Not to mention several new projects laid out on the work table (okay the work table is a wreck, they're laid out on the floor! shhh, don't tell anyone!), jotted many sketches and ideas down in my idea book, and finally got some photo albums of my past work on flicker.
Although I keep a notebook handy to sketch out ideas when they hit me, most of my work is not planned. I usually start with an element that intrigues me and the piece evolves from there. This piece started with this fantastic house shape I salvaged from a vintage german cuckoo clock found not too long ago at an estate auction. I can't believe how close I was to going home before it to came up on the block!
Once I have an element I know I will be using I begin experimenting, pulling out my stash of treasures, wandering around my studio, trying this and that and whatnot until I find a piece that seems to fit. Its almost like putting a jigsaw puzzle together without the lid of the box. I have no idea what it will look like when its done, but I know when a piece "fits" and when it doesn't.
The theme usually begins to develop in my mind as the pieces come together. As I covered the house with antique text and the tissue of an old sewing pattern and began to coat it with layers of gesso, acrylics, glaze and varnish, it began to resemble the weathered skin of an elderly person. It made me think of the house as a shell or a body containing a soul.
The theme evolved as I began to imagine the soul of the house being the memories it contained. What would the walls whisper to the present occupant if they could? What wisdom would they impart? What warnings or encouragement would it give?
Deuteronomy 32:7 teaches, "Remember the days of old, consider the years of many generations; ask thy father and he will shew thee, thy elders and they will tell thee."
We do have a lot to learn from our elders and from the lives of those who have passed before us.
I don't know when this piece will be "done". I just know its not there yet. Keep checking....