“You use a glass mirror to see your face; you use works of art to see your soul.” — George Bernard ShawI agree with this, for art provides opportunity to practice interpreting and responding to the elements before us, and the ‘soul’ of these decisions will be our intentions, priorities and values. Thus to the extent that art is an expression of our intentions and priorities, art provides opportunity for us to examine these expressions as clues that can help us not only better understand but also endeavor to heal our soul closer to the way we want to see not only ourselves, but the world. Yes art provides a very helpful paradigm or framework for doing just that. My desire and hope is that we choose love and beauty as the basis for our intentions and that we continue to pursue these qualities without end.
Schlegel, Friedrich. 1971. Friedrich Schlegel???s Lucinde; and, The fragments. Translated by P. Firchow. (1971), pp. 175-76. Minneapolis: London, Minneapolis : University of Minnesota Press ; Oxford University Press. Sent from an iOS mobile device.
Yesterday we brought in our young evergreen from the yard and I purposely adorned it in loving memory of those indigenous tribal peoples of northern Germany who were once slaughtered for their desire to do likewise.
Years ago in northern Germany:
“In 780 Charlemagne decreed the death penalty for all Saxons who failed to be baptized, who failed to keep Christian festivals, and who cremated their dead…He returned to Saxony in 782 and instituted a code of law… The laws were draconian on religious issues, and the indigenous forms of Germanic polytheism were gravely threatened by Christianisation. This revived a renewal of the old conflict. That year, in autumn, Widukind returned and led a new revolt, which resulted in several assaults on the church. In response, at Verden in Lower Saxony, Charlemagne allegedly ordered the beheading of 4,500 Saxons who had been caught practicing their native paganism after conversion to Christianity, known as the Massacre of Verden (“Verdener Blutgericht”). The killings triggered three years of renewed bloody warfare (783-785).
http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Charlemagne “…Using the clippings of evergreen shrubs from the landscape to decorate houses, a common practice during the December celebrations of Saturnalia, was strictly forbidden by the Church. The associations between decorating with evergreen shrubs and paganism were just too strong. Already in the early third century Tertullian had warned his fellow Christians against falling into the Saturnalian rut by using laurel wreaths as Christmas decorations (Tertullian, “On Idolatry,” XV, http://www.ccel.org/fathers2/ANF-03/anf03-07.htm#P765_315024 ).” http://landscaping.about.com/cs/winterlandscaping1/a/christmas_trees.htm
So in memory of these people, in particular the peasants, who simply wished to encourage themselves with reminders that the darkest part of the year had arrived and that the days would now begin to get longer again, I have adorned our lovely little evergreen with lights and pretty things.
May they rest in peace.
Peace.Sent from an iOS mobile device.
the rain falls
our hands are held
we are alive
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Read more of this story at Slashdot.
“Look daddy I made abstract art!”One of the wonderful and lovely benefits to creating art around children is their quick and honest love of playing along too. I have been teaching her that my own art is like an exploration of pretty colors and thus it wasn’t long before she presented this lovely picture made from her own photograph and manipulated all by herself, which I will always treasure. Peace love and the art of children. Daddy Boothe
Sent from an iOS mobile device.
Hello world:Just a few thoughts for you this evening before bed: My love is for art and the quality or value that it brings to the
opportunity or practice of engaging life with beautiful intent. Of course we may frequently fail to create the beauty we intend, but
this does not negate the value of having spent the effort and learned
from the experience. I have frequently stated metaphorically that as children approach the
age and opportunity wherein they can begin practicing their first
steps, they will often, frequently fail and fall. However, as they
understand the value of continuing to practice, they don’t stop
practicing until they “get it”. Do they occasionally fall hard enough
to cry? Yes. But do they give up? No. Survival is part of the
equation. We all recognize there are some things that we must learn to
survive and walking is of course high in priority. Learning how to
live in peace without hurting, abusing, or violating each other is
also key. Suffering is no fun, it hurts and leaves us harmed or
scarred. How do we process those things which grieve or offend us
most? My intention is to practice creating beauty from ashes (so to
speak). As an artist, I view the opportunity to practice creating beauty as
just that, something I must practice. Do I fail sometimes? Yes. Do I
sometimes fall hard enough to grieve? Absolutely. Have I made social
or relational messes? Definitely. Do I regret these? Of course. But do
I give up trying to avoid them or trying to create beauty altogether?
Never. Absolutely not. My intention is to live in a manner which
leaves our world better than I found it. I realize this is a tall
order, one in which I will likely fail frequently, but I will not give
up pursuing this intention as long as I breath. I will not rest with
the status quo as long as I have any capacity to abuse, harm or
project grief instead of love. The current installation I have having hanging at the compact Gallery
is just one expression of how I am learning to practice composing art
from our everyday surroundings utilizing the least amount of effort,
time or materials. This practice allows me to keep my responsibilities
to my family in order, food on the table and a roof over our heads,
while helping me overcome old habitually abusive thought patterns or
memories that have haunted me all of my life. And so it goes… another evening is over and another day begins. Peace. Steven Boothe
Venue: compactArtist: Steven Boothe
Exhibit: More than Watching
December 3, 2010 – January 1, 2011
Announcement: “Consisting of 1,456 images taken this year on October 13th, November 3rd and 13th, and hung from the gallery’s ceiling, the artist’s large collage transforms and invigorates the banal with a nuanced eye and a powerful aesthetic intuitiveness.”
(compact – a modern art gallery – which is committed to the presentation of artists and their art in concentrated and thoughtful installations.)
As an artist who just opened his first show, I can only hope many more artists will come to know the kind of experience this has been for me.
Wow. I am awake at 12:36am, the day after the day after the evening of what I can only describe as incredibly amazing and overwhelming to adequately come up with the words to dump at a pace commensurate with the need I have… Wow? How can I go further than this? I think this is what happens when you just have so much happening emotionally that there is just too much to try and say that the only word utterable is something that just comes viscerally from the sheer enormity of it all… I guess if the musician Sting could once write of “sending out an SOS to the world” then I guess want similarly send out a “thank you” to the “world” in gratitude for my opportunity to still be among the living after these 44 years…Peace love and ubuntu. I ask beg and plead for forgiveness too. I know there are many moments where I wish my living composition had a more beautiful or comforting aesthetic. This truth is just made the more real with every moment I realize I wouldn’t be alive unless there had been some extraordinary expression of love, forgiveness or generosity… After the opening of my first solo art exhibit Friday night, my wife and I were being very careful about keeping our girls safe while trying to load our trunk and get into our car parked on a busy street with fast moving cars, when suddenly our 2 yr old spotted something across the street and side stepping mommy began to trot toward the path of a fast oncoming car… I yelled. Linda reached out and caught her three or four steps from calamity… How in the world am I supposed to find the words that express enough of this love or thanks that one feels over the moment of living in the context of just so much intensity? What in the world is going on here? How can I do this? Where can we find the words to adequately describe this whirlwind of peaks and valleys that beset us at times like this? I love you all. I am amazed all the time for the moments I am alive with my darling girls and the extended friends, family and community of courageous lovers (those who practice love rather than violence) worldwide. What can I do to give back more than I have received? This is the question that challenges me more than any other… How can I continually return a positive profit for others from whatever elements are before me? How can I leave any situation more beautiful than when I first entered? How can I keep my sanity in the face of such intensity whether anger, grief or love? Practicing art helps me with those questions. The more I practice the process of creating beauty love or compassion, the more I seem to experience these as a consequence, and since I agree very strongly with Joel Meyerowitz that as human beings we require beauty in our lives, and that time and beauty help heal, the more beauty I produce, the more healing I realize and hope I facilitate. So as I continue to breath, I will continue to practice, and I guess that is the best I can do… Sent from an iOS mobile device.