Friday, June 13, 2014

Trawling for Images

In between art projects (actually in the process of editioning one, but the creative part is over on that one and my wheels have started spinning in a different direction),  I like to dive back into old journals and sketchbooks and skim lightly to see what images grab me.  A friend is working on a project that reminded me of something I saw and drew 8 years ago during a summer in Italy-- a tiny stone chapel in a sort of castle compound on top of a steep hill-- anyway, stumbling upon that chapel one twilight and watching some men lay sod all over the floor of the interior of the chapel and carefully arrange flowers, turning the interior into a meadow as the setting for a Renaissance-themed wedding.  I went back to that journal, found the chapel drawing, and then began to trawl for other images.  The first to leap off the pages was a very tiny quick sketch made during a village wedding of the bride hurrying into the church.  She looked nothing like an American bride but was wrapped in layers of gorgeous taffeta-like material with a kind of bustle in the back and a little flower thing on her head and some orange calla lilies in her hand.  The drawing of her looks like a bundle, a package, a pacquet like a voodoo pacquet--

And the next image that was irresistibly compelling was  a small thumbnail of the moon, from a fresco in a church, this particular moon being up in a far corner and seeming to encompass several phases in one image.  The third grabber was a canopic jar that I drew from one in the Etruscan museum in Chiusi.  (Next I looked up at Jesse, who was napping while the rain poured down outside.  He looked like a collection of cat parts from where I was sitting.)  And below Jesse a drawing of a flat-bottomed boat from a small lake near the house we were renting and which I tried unsuccessfully to rent several times that summer.  Always the man told me fiercely "Troppo ventoso oggi!"-- too windy today [for the likes of you to rent my boat].

Next I drew all of the pacquets that I've made in the last few years. For some reason they want to come back into play.  I also took some little stuffed girl dolls and turned them into pacquets, which are reminding me of the bride,  as well as the moon, and I'm not sure why.  Clearly this is a loose uncontrollable part of the project.  Fun to watch what turns up.  Meanwhile Jesse slept on, and the rain continued to pour down on the very dry garden.


  1. I don't know what a pacquet is, but I am going to look it up! You are on to something with these women! They remind me of art dolls I've made! Love watching your process!

  2. Look it up under voudou or voodoo. Very interesting---- Doesn't the bride remind you of one??

  3. Hi! Looked it up, but could only find tiny packages or bundles to use in voodoo! Saw the regular dolls, but not these! Your pacquets Do remind me of the bride! And they remind me of Griselda's art dolls and other's I've made! But those with the moon face on the right remind me of Tomie de Paola's work...and my Italian relatives! ;) Wonder where you'll go with this!??? OH, and had a friend over who brought a sketchbook with her that a friend made her. We tried to figure it all it was made. If we get one done, I'll LYK! ♥