"And I lift my glass to the awful truth, which you can't reveal to the ears of youth, except to say
it isn't worth a dime." - from Closing Time by Leonard Cohen
"It frightens me, the awful truth of how sweet life can be." -from Up To Me by Bob Dylan
Using collage, storytelling, and performance, I explore affinities between artistic practice and processes in mind-body medicine such as mindfulness meditation and somatic awareness. I am interested in ways these vocations allow us to connect to our experience and frame it. I work with Buddhist teachings, fabulist tradition and somatic experience as potential avenues to understanding our landscapes, including those that are difficult, deemed useless and/or internal. I am interested in the line in the sand drawn by Leonard Cohen and curious if he was...well...wrong. I am interested in Dylan's description of being frightened by a life that is simultaneously sweet and awful.
In the tradition of storytelling I make illustrations, spreads and manuscripts that are rooted in the value of becoming familiar with difficult feelings such as loss, fear, uncertainty, heartbreak and failure. I also facilitate participatory events rooted in mind-body practice such as contemplative walks, site specific guided meditations and public collage work spaces. These events are created with the intention of cultivating a deepened understanding of our landscapes including spaces and materials that we take for granted, dislike or even throw away.
My visual Influences include Italian altarpieces from the Late Middle Ages, and works by Frida Kahlo, Philip Guston, Kerry James Marshall, Kathe Kollwitz, Kara Walker and Henri Matisse. My favorite writers include Leonard Cohen, Helen Oyeyemi, Mona Awad, Louise Erdrich, Carol Horton and Pema Chödrön. I keep the work of Lynda Barry, James Marshall and Bob Dylan close to my heart and often reflect upon my collaborations with health care providers and fellow artists. Also part of my practice are memories of summer hikes in the great lakes region and meditation instruction I have been given by teachers of different traditions during retreats and study periods throughout the United States and abroad.