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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.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Excuse my absence...

Well, I have been sooo pathetic about posting during July and early August, but I continue to be mired in the Dr's appointments and related stuff.  That, coupled with the fact that summer fully arrived with beautiful 75-80 degree days and sunshine, providing weather I don't want to miss out on.  Grandson Jake has also been here a lot, and with all of the above,  the weeks just flown by.

Since all my online groups have been quiet, I think most people are either out enjoying summer, working in the garden, vacationing, trying to get the kids through the last few weeks of summer, or melting with the extreme heat. Oh, I am so sorry for those who are going through that!

But, I do still want to do an August giveaway. Post a comment during August, and you'll be eligible for the drawing.  And, for my part, will try to show you some photos of new work and some commentary to actually respond to!   I do have a new piece or two started, so I'll do some photos and get back to you.
In the meantime, stay cool, my friends!

Pictured below:  an oldie titled "Done".  Copyright by Diane Lou.

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