I have known Ellen and admired her talents for years. She used to own the coolest floral/gift shop called Maiden America. It was where I went for inspiration and retail therapy. Ellen just received (earned!) a masters degree in Fine Arts at the University of Idaho. I have one of her paintings in the shop and would be sitting at my beach villa if I could have sold it to everyone who wants to take it home. Ellen will be setting up a space at our "sugar shack" and I am sure it will be smashing.
We are all animals. We emerged from the landscape-and the voices of the silent Others are still out there. Some are noticeable, some less so; reminding us through sound, wind, scent and song.
They have names and spirit-the trees, rabbit and the hawk, mourning doves, the basalt, the hedge between the fields alive and listening. My sincere desire was to hear their voice.
Recognizing them as a way to measure the depths of ones nature, a way to find a pathway to the soul. It is my belief that we have moved farther and farther off the path to understanding our nature-and we need to reconnect. I f I have any obligation as an artist, it could be only be to remind others that those "thin places" that Thomas Merton talks about-the diaphanous Edens- are celebrated. Making art is often an egocentric undertaking-acknowledging that we need to change our pace-maybe a pathway to a greater good.
Caspar David Freidrich an early nineteenth century German Landscape painter said it best, "a painter should not merely paint what he sees in front of him, he ought to paint what he sees within himself. " Through an elimination of ego, and a reconciliation with the universal spirit we become the medium.