Thursday, May 2, 2013

Underwater Sunlight

10”x12” watercolour paper, gelatin relief print using found objects and linocuts and pen ink drawing.
Last night I dreamed. We are told that every night we dream, but mostly we have no access to that strange land.  Dreams are common, mostly banal, and all but the most vivid and memorable forgotten, and who knows how many of the best of them are never remembered all. Billions of people sleeping, every night, dreaming, every night, thinking, feeling, being, doing, and most of it never sees the light of day. And then you wake up. If it was a bad dream, something frightening, disgusting, depressing, perhaps you count yourself lucky not to remember. I often catch snippets of dreams so banal it’s impossible to recall the jumble of trivial details, and other times, banal or not, I want to remember, badly…because those experiences, far below the surface of conscious thought, are part of my life, part of my experience and who I am, and I don’t want to lose them. Forgotten dreams remind me of the unseen spaces behind my eyes, the place you cannot look, but an only imagine, piecing it together from memory. Behind me, while I type there is a black scanner with a blue light, a pale apricot coloured wall (don’t ask), a stack of cd’s, a jumble of papers, but I’m only remembering, and I’m sure, until I look back, that it is an imperfect, distorted memory. Dreams are like that, but without the ability to look back and refresh. A forgotten dream is gone forever, except, perhaps then next night, or the nights thereafter, where places and things and themes recur.
Last night, two dreams. One, utterly ordinary, but much wished for, as my recently lost siamese cat, was there on the couch, curled up comfortably, soft and warm. I was reluctant to waken.
But now, as I write this, another springs to the surface, my house was attached to a gallery that was attached to a mall or other vast indoor space. Vast, because once in, I had trouble finding my way back.  Vast because there were outdoor spaces, and a Shakespeare play enacted, but none I’ve ever heard of, with gladiatorial brawls and monsters of ancient greek legend, played by machines and sarcastic ironic actors. Oh, and there were fish in murky algal green pond, amongst less savory things.
About the art: this on just finished. I’m not sure how long I’ve been hanging on to this gelatin print, waiting for it to speak up and tell me how it needs to be finish, but it finally did speak, late this morning, and here it is on the blog.  While I worked on it, I was not remembering the dream, that came after, but I’m not really sure which came first, because conscious thought is just that which skims the surface.
I’ve posted a high-resolution image on FineArtAmerica (for those who like seeing detail/close-ups)
And added it to my Printmaking Portfolio section on Etsy.

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