This is love: to fly toward a secret sky, to cause a hundred veils to fall each moment. First to let go of life. Finally, to take a step without feet.
I have worked on this commission for most of the last 3 weeks. Normally I don’t do this kind of work that fast, I tell Terri yesterday when I deliver the completed, though unframed, large work on paper. I enjoyed it and I struggled with it. In general my drawing is changing, I am including much more information, if I can figure it out.
There are things about this composition I don’t normally set up to do – like a smiling face. Because I told Terri to stand in a natural way and she stood firm, bright-eyed, strong, chin up and she smiled, I worked very hard to get the face just right – eyes, smile and all.
Here are a few progressive shots of it:
I wish I could take that, Terri points to all the internal anatomy in the artwork, and place it here, inside me – she points to her chest. It came from you, I say as I laugh. She nods and repeats herself, I wish I could bring that inside me, now. That’s a great thing to hear.
This is an anatomy study , it’s a study of an energetic system, it’s Terri. And Terri has brain cancer.
I ask if she is okay with me sharing all this. She nods her head – Yes, I am. I ask a few more times. I feel protective. But whom am I protecting, I wonder. Terri is accepting of her life. Her son, who is present, agrees – she’s accepting it all! Terri is forthcoming about where she finds herself, and she’s at peace. I see it in her expression. I hear it in her voice. She tells me she’s had 3 other cancers – of the colon, in the sacrum, in the lungs, and now – the brain.
I consider the physical body a lot these days, as I immerse myself in these anatomy studies. The body serves a great purpose, it holds the spirit. As human beings we live and connect with it and through it.
I prefer to use medical terminology when I title a work. This could be different, it is a human body, a female front body, from head to hips. It is a Study of a Human Female Body, Anterior View. But I am thinking of another title, a sub-title, something like – Inside me, Inside you.
Thanks again Terri. It’s been some assignment to study your spirit – strong-willed and so directed.
The work is casein, gesso and graphite on cream Arches paper, 36″ x 25″
The blog posts titled No Woman is an Island acknowledge the people and/or organizations who support me and the work I do.
The art in this post connects to another work completed in 2012. Terri and Patricaia traveled to Italy recently and upon their return, drove to California and married.