Ritual

Ritual

How can my process of meaning making be distinguished from the ordinary process of making? Ritual? Can I accept that? I turn away from ritual now mostly from habit. It echos a repetition of actions that are done so many times they lose their meaning. I question those assertions and assumptions, reactions that have become automatic to almost become the ritual that I habitually reject.

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Vulnerable Reciprocity

Vulnerable Reciprocity

I struggle with seeing how I personally cultivate a reciprocal relationship with the land. Every personal relationship to the land is different and every place also presents different relationships and connections. Reflection brought some clarification.

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A Relationship of Abundance

A Relationship of Abundance

What would happen if fear and guilt is dropped from conversations about the environment? What would it feel like to think of ourselves as part of nature rather than something separate that we need to fix? What if the land is internalized so that we are in fact, healing ourselves? What if we change perspective to be in relationship with the earth?

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Meaning in Negative Space

Meaning in Negative Space

Perception has a bias for objects. Objects contain information about the world and our surroundings: they can be obstacles – you need to know where they are to avoid them when walking across a room. Objects can be tools; they can be intriguing, beautiful and fascinating; they can be threatening. They frequently demand attention. We see objects for good reasons.
What is an object without all of the space around it, within it, and through it? Can an object be seen without the space? Can we understand something more complexly by switching focus on the spaces that the objects define?

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Slow Looking

Slow Looking

There are things that I have learned from all of the artwork that I have seen over the years. There is artwork that catches my attention immediately. Sometimes I really like it. But soon after I move on and my attention is pointed elsewhere, the artwork dissipates. It is gone from my memory and mind like smoke dissolving in the ether.
The ones that remain intact do not necessarily demand my attention immediately. Sometimes they are the ones that quietly wait. They do not reveal themselves in a flash, all at once and then fade. They do just the opposite: they build slowly.

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River Blues

River Blues

Every river has a unique color palette, and they all fluctuate with the seasons. It’s like the color is a facet of the river’s personality. And now, through satellites and long-term data collection, we can clearly see how the colors are drifting away from their traditional cyclical patterns. The personalities of rivers are changing over time.

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Wonder – Why is the world so beautiful?

Wonder – Why is the world so beautiful?

Wonder Responses to the essay Poetry-Science Gratitude Duet by Alison Hawthorne Deming and Frederick J. Swanson An Open Letter to Robin Wall Kimmerer Why is the World So Beautiful? Wonder An Open Letter to Robin Wall Kimmerer: Why is the world so beautiful? Part 3: Responses to the essay Poetry-Science Gratitude Duet by Alison Hawthorne Deming and Frederick J. Swanson Penguin Crossing Dear Robin Wall Kimmerer, At the end of his presentation at the Arts/Sciences Convergences at OSU introduction, poet and writer Charles Goodrich asked this question on your behalf: Why is the world so... Read More
Story

Story

Story Responses to the essay Poetry-Science Gratitude Duet by Alison Hawthorne Deming and Frederick J. Swanson And Notes for the Art Science Convergences at OSU Panel Discussion Story Part 2: Responses to the essay Poetry-Science Gratitude Duet by Alison Hawthorne Deming and Frederick J. Swanson Ambient: October 11, 2014, Between 10:55 AM and 3:42 PM; Watershed 1, Lookout Creek & Watershed 3 Oil on 6 Wood Panels, 25 1/2 in. x 112 in.     Telling you what I do is fairly easy: I make abstract paintings that show chromatic changes in the environment that we can’t easily see or track with... Read More
Patience

Patience

Patience Responses to the essay Poetry-Science Gratitude Duet by Alison Hawthorne Deming and Frederick J. Swanson Patience Part 1: Responses to the essay Poetry-Science Gratitude Duet by Alison Hawthorne Deming and Frederick J. Swanson 200 Year Log Decomposition Study Patience is at the essence of the log decomposition study at HJ Andrews. Mark Harmon began the study of forest ‘morticulture’ at the Andrews about 30 years ago. It is designed to continue for 200 years. How patient must one be to wait to know that the answer that you are seeking will not be found during your own lifetime?... Read More
Silence

Silence

Silence    “He who does not understand your silence will probably not understand your words.” Elbert Hubbard Silence has been on my mind lately, especially when I am in my studio painting. Without silence there is no music, no prose, no composition. It is only through silence and emptiness that form can emerge. Recently I went to the symphony and I paid careful attention to the silences. They are between the notes, they separate the movements, and they mark the end of a piece. The silence that occurs between the last note, and the first cough and shuffle from the... Read More
Discovery Trail

Discovery Trail

Discovery Trail Published in the Rot: The Afterlife of Trees Exhibition Catalog, The Arts Center, Corvallis, OR, January 2016 " Discovery Trail A lacquered tree round adorned with an image of a salamander marks the beginning of the Discovery Trail located at the HJ Andrews Experimental Forest headquarters. The trail wanders through old growth forest and leads to Lookout Creek. Along the trail you will find no signs or kiosks designating an area or object as particularly “discover worthy.” There is an invitation at the trailhead to discover, but it does not dictate what that discovery... Read More

What Will Scientists Gain From Collaborating With Artists?

The last question a student asked of my work after my Portland Community College lecture was, ‘What do you think scientists will gain from collaborating with artists?’ This was probably the most important question of the evening. I didn’t have a very good answer at the time because it’s a question I am still working through myself. I told her that I don’t know. It was the honest answer. But I have some thoughts on what I would like to see happen through collaboration, some of which I attempted to explain. I think that too many people are disconnected from their own creativity. This is a... Read More

Uncreativity

Art is theft – Pablo Picasso I want to just cut and paste the article It’s Not Plagiarism. In the Digital Age, It’s ‘Repurposing.’ by Kenneth Goldsmith. I know that the author would have no problem with it, but the Chronicle of Higher Education might. I will, however, repurpose it to fit my needs. Kenneth Goldsmith would surely give me an ‘A.’ I will start by summing things up with a quote from an entirely different article: From Carol Kino’s interview with sculptor Tony Cragg in the Art Economist (no story link – you have to subscribe to read the... Read More

Artists: Write It! Speak It!

Myth #2: Art speaks for itself. Words and language are unnecessary since art is a visual experience. If you it doesn’t speak for itself it’s not doing its job. If you don’t understand it, you must not know anything about art.
Making art consists of a series of choices to simplify and eliminate information.

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