I love that most of what I use in my art is something that has been rejected because it supposedly no longer has any value to anyone. It is also good that I love and am inspired by these things that no one else wants, and so they are available to me...often for mere pennies.
Such was the case with the foundation of Dark Angel, pictured above. On a trip last year to the Goodwill bins (Goodwill Outlet store...the end of the line), I spied this very, very old tattered, falling apart sleeve pressing board. It was starting to detach itself from the backing board, the fabric cover had evocative stains and rips, and was, in fact, useless. I nearly gasped at my good fortune!
I would never have thought of trying to find an old sleeve pressing board for the basis of an art work, but when I saw it, I had that gut feeling, the pit-of-the-stomach jolt, that signaled a real find.
It was the same with the rusted and discolored metal that winds its way around the board. Last year Nils and I had a beautiful new studio built, and during the course of construction, the builders obviously broke a metal measuring tape and quickly threw it into a pile that would later be burned. Months later, I spied the small remains of the burned pile of debris, and again gasped when I saw the beautiful patina on the now burned and rusted remains of the measuring tape. I am always shocked and pleased to see such amazing beauty and intrigue in such discards.
As someone recently said when they visited my studio, "There is really nothing you wouldn't use for art, is there?" and then quickly offered to show me where a complete skeleton of a possum now lies, bones bleached and clean. I'll be meeting with her soon, again with that gut feeling of having found a treasure that will end up in my art.
(Photo: Dark Angel, 24" tall. Copyright by Diane Lou 2008. Photo by Nils Lou)