Perhaps because I was born in Oregon, I am always searching for evidence of a drowned world. I dream of summer, but to be honest, it is the impenetrable curtain of rain I love most. Today the ponds are overflowing and all the soft, low spots in the paths and driveway are deep underwater. Last week’s fallen leaves are are now a carpet of crinkled mulch. Rhododendron leaves hang slick and sodden, bloated with with water.
No place describes the process of accretion and decay like the Willamette Valley in winter. All last year’s layers–leaves, newspapers, soda cans–press into the ground, soon to become just another layer of tilth and soil. Nothing organic lasts long here, and why should it? Our memories are only slightly more reliable than a season of rain.
This weather–and this time of year–got me to thinking about some of the various reasons artists use encaustic. After all, they could be painting with acrylic. Or whittling. This week I want to examine briefly memory, recycling, remote viewing and the geologic/archaeological process of hiding and revelation. These observations will come from various artist statements gleaned from the web. Caveat here: artist statements are invariably imprecise because they are artists’ attempts to explain what they do. Some artists do it well, others less so, but these statements are often put together somewhat after the act of creation.
Before I get to this new series, I’ll post what I intended to write last week–some thoughts on how to make green pigment. I know, right? Didn’t I say I’d never make my own pigments? Read it Wednesday.
For today, here are some photos of my drowned world.
And because I couldn’t believe my luck, today of all days, here’s Marzi–awake: