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The Muse's Storage Box

The Muse's Storage Box
Copyright Diane Lou.

Alchemical Dreams and Disparate Realities

Rust and bones, broken toys and old text, game boards, gears and nests. Even as a child such odd, unwanted items evoked a pit-of-the-stomach response that bordered on exhilaration.
While I make no attempt to conjure up specific feelings in the viewer, the ambiguous juxtapositioning of familiar materials creates art that evokes half-forgotten, dream-like visions that beg to be interpreted by the viewer. There is a sense of deja vu (the already seen) tempered by a sense of jamais vu ( the never seen, or the illusion that the familiar does not seem familiar), and this contradiction asks the viewer to dig deeply, to look inside her own repository of wisdom, intuition and experience to find her own meaning in the familiar objects she sees.
The once-private discards of people's material lives that I collect for my art seem to carry universal memories with them, memories that can engage and mystify the viewer. Their beauty lies within the rust, the erosion, the wear, and the mere fact that they were once possessions.
I play with abandon and with no forethought. Each piece of detritus seems to suggest to me a relationship with some other piece, and I begin to put them together and wait for the mental "buzz" that lets me know I am proceeding as I should. Even at this point, I continue to remain in the play state and will not allow myself to direct the outcome of the piece, a process that requires complete trust. The outcome often mystifies me as much as it might any viewer.
Remember when, as a child, whatever was in reach became the instrument of your creative exploration? That is my life. A rusty, flattened piece of metal on the street, a gnawed bone by the roadside, a unique twisted branch from a tree, a fallen nest, a broken egg, a snake's skin, a dead butterfly...all will be added to my collection and eventually have their beauty honored in one of my pieces. The resulting art creates a new story with its own imagined history, one that invites the viewers to lay some claim on it by allowing themselves to be enveloped by the sight, the history, and the ambiguity of the realities before them.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Elk....and a freebie!

On the way out today, Nils called to tell me there was herd of elk in the field by the Delphian School, about 5 miles from here.  At that point I was still in my robe, sipping on my tea, but I threw on my clothes, grabbed the camera and was able to get a couple photos...nothing close because they were quite wary.  But what a sight they are!  Marvelous (as long as they aren't tromping through your garden or yard...or eating the winter's stash of hay you were using for your cattle or horses).... beautiful, massive  (about horse-sized) creatures.
Nils hasn't seen elk around here for many years.  This herd could find its way to our property as they have a large range that they occupy.

Don't forget to post comments during the month in order to be entered into the drawing for a piece of my art! Drawing is on April 1st.  Each comment puts your name in the hat once again.

Off to the studio...


Carol said...

Oh, I can't believe it! A herd of elk, just wandering... I suppose it would be like seeing a big flock of kangaroos here in Australia but of course, someone else's wild animals always seem more amazing than your own.

Diane Lou said...

So true, Carol. I would say the same thing about kangaroos if you posted a picture!

Ruth Armitage said...

It is quite a sight to see a large herd like this! They are magnificent animals, especially as you say, if they are not eating your garden!

Diane Lou said...

Indeed, Ruth!