21.25" x 17.5" Watercolor, Ink, Gouache, Acrylic and Graphite - October 2022 to November 2022
Ethiopian wolf mandala with a bejeweled serpent (endangered Sinai cat snake from Egypt) and a Royal Sunangel hummingbird (NT). The serpent head is rare Australian opal which is dark and reflective, shot through with veins of rainbow light.
These windows open to the unknown, unmapped dark spaces in the subconscious. Presided over by the serpent (land) and the bird (air). In Egyptian origin myth, the cosmos was a dark empty space filled with potential. Space separated into parts. The sky was lifted from the earth’s surface, making space for humans and for everything else.
There are many layers of reality in an image, different spaces and even times. They are compressed to sit on the two dimensional surface of the paper.
A quote from my journal: "I took some photos yesterday morning. The sun was low on the horizon and pouring into the sitting room, casting very dark shadows on the pale yellow wall. I made shadow puppets with one hand and awkwardly took photos with my other hand. I was trying to capture the "dog" or "ghost" that I was making, but ended up including the shadows of my head, arm, and phone as well as my "actual" hand, contorted into a dog shape. My favorite of all the images was one that contained all of the realities with the awkward hand and the edge of the phone. MY physical reality, the shadow "scene" and then the fiction of the dog on the wall. Each layer tells a totally different story."
In Egyptian myth, time is measured by cycles of the sun. Each day is a lifetime of birth, mid-life and strength, old age then death, when the sun passes below into the underworld, bringing daylight to those who dwell there. The sun is born again at sunrise and starts its journey over.
The project I have set for myself is to journey inward to collect and digest the exotic bits. Then to bring them back, a "boon for humanity" with the preternatural shimmer still glimmering. These distant places are mining grounds from which I am curating a collection of natural histories.