The period of Lent is the 40 days before Easter (not counting Sundays). Its a great time to stop and assess things in my life. I never make New Year’s Resolutions as its too chaotic during the “silly season” to really think about where I am in life. So Lent becomes the period of time to think about things and then make any changes that I want at Easter – to be re-born anew. One of the big changes in my arts practice is to actually draw the work before I paint it. Not a big deal really but for years it was the LAST thing I wanted to do. I wanted to paint. Consequently I caused myself a lot of pain by pushing ahead without thinking about what I wanted to do or where I was headed. Not anymore! I do thumbnail sketches, test ideas on small “daily” painting exercises and spend I bit more time thinking.
This year’s painting for Lent was inspired by the idea of giving something up. Usually people are encouraged to give up something they like such as chocolate, TV watching etc. It got me thinking. What if people gave up something they liked that hurt other people? Things like always being right, being the “stitch” police (or quilt police or…), being constantly critical of other’s efforts and so on. The things that give people perverse pleasure in doing but end of hurting others. So that was the concept behind this piece.
Lent is also a journey. A journey of ups and downs as I fall back into old ways so that inspired the landscape. It’s also hard to let go of habits and behaviours so the ground is rocky. But the promise is there – to bloom in nature if I bother to put the effort in.
This piece is currently on display in the Lent to Easter Exhibition at the Vera Wade Gallery, St Andrew’s Church, Cnr Creek and Ann Streets, Brisbane, QLD, Australia. It’s open Monday to Friday from 11am to 2pm with the entry off Ann St. It’s worth dropping in to see the wonderful variety of work by all the artists from the Visionaries Group as each person presents a different viewpoint on the Lenten journey.