A Circle in My Own Backyard...

Backyard Story Circle #1

Backyard Story Circle #1

I remember the first time I saw a book of Andy Goldsworthy's work. It was at Meininger's in Denver. I was 24, my now husband Steve and I were there. I was grabbing supplies as he browsed the books. Something I rarely used to take the time to do after graduating from the University.

"Check this out. It's really cool!" Steve proclaimed. I think it was some work Goldsworthy had done in New York. I remember vivid autumn leaves in green backdrops and very little else. I registered it as interesting in my head and went on with life. 

Almost 7 years later I visited my aunt and uncle in Wimberly, Texas. My uncle, a hard working business man for decades, had retired here. In his retirement he had taken up creating things. Obsessively relocating stones on his property, creating little labyrinths. Stacking them to make benches and cairns. Reclaiming old branches and sculpting them in to wands and walking sticks. This was the next time I thought of Goldsworthy. I researched the artist's name (I couldn't even remember it, found the book, and mailed it to Uncle Buddy. What he was doing also seemed "cool" I thought. Again, I registered the work, engagement with environment in creation, as interesting and went on with life. 

Lately, a funny thing has been happening. It started with my stumbling upon sacred geometry in art (also notable in Wimberly a few years later). I started creating mandalas as paintings from there. I somehow ended up in a basket weaving class at Squam this June. I'm feeling called to create the same work I have been doing in pen and paint in other mediums.  

I keep coming up with ideas and dreams. Public art installations, big treasures I build upon trails or in woods that people may or may not find. Big Ideas, Big Dreams. I've been sitting with them since June and have done little with them. Until today...

Today I untangled vine after vine in the foliage wall that crops up between our neighbors to the back and us every spring. I clipped some and coiled them to dry for one of these "biggish" projects I have planned.

I did it in between pushing my babes in their swings and helping them climb rope ladders. Cal helped me strip the vines of their leaves and attacked them with his toy numchucks and practiced his scissor skills on the leaves(true story...). After the vines were coiled I left the pile of leaves in the backyard to clean up later and headed to the pet store with the kids and Steve to get some new fish (mass aquarium catastrophe on Monday).

I just sat down to start my piece for my post of the day. I noticed the leaves in the back, wilting in our extreme heat. No time like the present I thought. I headed out and created the above. 

A story circle of: 

big dreams starting small in my own backyard 

hot days and a lawn suffering as a result of it 

my little boy and the fun we had dismantling areas of our leaf wall this morning 

connection to environment, the connection I have and the connection I crave 

the leaves and vines and plants and flowers so foreign to me in the Northeast region, stories of something else I can learn 

stories of a daily commitment to creation, even on summer vacation, in whatever way I can