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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.

Monday, October 3, 2011

Amazing show!

Here I am back home after the Local 14 show in Portland, and it was great!  I sold 10 pieces, got a new gallery, was invited into a ReUse show in spring, met amazing people who "got" my art and what I do, have an opportunity to be filmed and interviewed, and well, all in all, it was validating and inspiring.  And it's always fun to connect with new women artists, and since this is a women-only show, there was lots of that too.

Penumbra, pictured below, was the first piece to sell.


Whoa, September is gone already!  So that means it is once again time to draw a name and send out some "goodie" to a reader who has posted a comment during the month.  I'll try to do that by tomorrow.  And remember each month there is a giveaway of a free item....a print or a piece of art...to someone who posts a comment.  Your name is entered every time you post a comment.

On the 11th, I'll deliver 4 or 5 pieces to the Dia de los Muertos (Day of the Dead) show at the new Chehalem Arts Center in Newberg.  Since my work is often a little "dark" anyway, it is easy for a lot of my pieces to fit into that category.

Fall is definitely here.  Time to plant some fall greens in the garden.

6 comments:

rebeca trevino said...

Diane! that is terrific! All great news . . . sales? a new gallery? a new show? great people? an interview? WHEW!
congratulations,well deserved!

Diane Lou said...

Thanks, Rebeca. It was just wonderful! I had the best time ever.

Carol said...

Wow! Congratulations on selling 10 pieces! and all that other wonderful stuff. You must have been thrilled to bits. Penumbra is gorgeous, I'm sure the new owner will really treasure it.

Diane Lou said...

Thanks, Carol. It was awesome to have so many pieces go to people who love them. And I was really at the point that I just wanted to start with a wall of fresh stuff.

Dayna Collins said...

It was great meeting you, Diane, and to see your beautiful art in person.

Diane Lou said...

Thanks, and I was so glad to meet you too, Dayna. I always enjoy reading your FB posts and seeing your photos.