The act if creating is ever evolving. I started The Burn series 3 years ago. The artist statement written a while back felt lacking because there was a subtext to the work that I was not sharing. Time has passed and there is more clarity on how and why I made the work. Having a solo show opening next week in San Francisco at the Corden Potts Gallery has encouraged me to reevaluate the artist statement. I have been reworking the statement for the past week and think I have finally arrived at what, exactly, I want to say.
Burn No. 49
Here it is....
"While accompanying restoration ecologists on prescribed prairie burns, I am drawn to the ephemeral quality of the single moment when life and death are not opposites, but rather parts of a single process to be embraced as a whole.
As fate would have it, this project began on the same day (and actual hour) of my sister’s first chemotherapy treatment, having just been diagnosed with ovarian cancer. The parallels between the burn and chemotherapy were immediately revealed to me as I photographed with my sister in my heart and mind.
Burning helps reduce invasive vegetation that crowd out native plants, allowing sunlight to reach the seedlings. By opening the woodlands to more daylight, the fires prepare the soil for new spring growth, and the cycle of renewal continues. So too, chemotherapy removes unwanted growth, allowing for new healthy cells to reestablish themselves. It was with this deeper understanding of the life cycle that these images were created."
Burn No. 45, included in the group juried show, "Fantastic Landscapes," gallery 310 conTEMPORARY @ 310 S. Michigan, Chicago, August 2nd - September 30, Reception, September 9th from 5-8pm.
Along the subject of cancer, I have another "body" of work on breast cancer that a fellow artist commissioned me to create. It can be seen HERE but is not for the faint hearted.
There is also a wonderful group of women who created Recovery On Water (ROW), a mutually-empowering rowing team that gives survivors of breast cancer the unique opportunity to interact, become active in their recovery, and gain support from fellow survivors. They are having a fund raiser in the Chicago area September 11th. Click HERE for more information.