Tuesday, October 06, 2015

beautiful blocks of time

"I can no longer look at nature and stay calm.  
 It sweeps me up, embracing me, swirling and moving in one continuous breath.
 Everything is connected: the forest, life, and myself.
 I wanted to paint these enormous feelings in a way that was big and free.
But painting in oil is slow and expensive, and watercolour is not intense enough, so I invented a new mixture: oil paint and gasoline.
 The oil paint goes further and the colours stay clear and bright.  Can you feel life and movement quivering in every brushstroke?  " emily carr
Before I wrap up my journals with cloth and threads,  I open them randomly one more time and read whatever page opens up.  Today, it happened to be this clipping of Emily Carr's text and painting (see below) in a journal from 2000.
I have seventeen journals wrapped now and it has taken me nearly a year to get this far along.  I spend half an hour every day going through one, reading it as I type very quickly to enter the family story and my art making into my laptop in chronological order.  Occasionally, I come across a gem that still resonates and I re-write or sketch it into my current journal.  
It pleases me to wrap up these books and not look at the words and clippings and drawings any more. Now I just see them as beautiful blocks of time.


  1. While I love the way they look, I could never do this.. brava to you, that you can..

  2. kathy loomis1:15 pm

    Are you familiar with Andy Warhol's practice of every day sweeping everything off his desk and into a box, which he sealed and labeled and put away? I have terrible problems with old stuff. Even going through boxes of old stuff with the intent to discard leads to hours and hours and hours of reading what's there.

  3. I feel that this wrapping is a first step to actual discard. Maybe even burning.

    I am spending hours and hours Kathy, and I look forward to spending it each day. I put the kitchen timer for 30 minutes and use the time as a way to re-connect with who I really am - who I really was. It's therapy in a way i think.

    Then closing them and making them so that I can not go back anymore is a way of facing time's steady march - and that there are a lot of things yet to do, I can't look back. Must go forward.

    I also think that a hundred of them in a book shelf would make a beautiful installation in an art gallery some day.

    Thanks for all comments.

  4. amazing
    (making free ....?)

  5. Yes, it is making me feel free I suppose. But I am also collecting a story of a mother who was a artist while parenting to the very best of her ability, four children. It's a story that I've forgotten parts of, while other parts have been repeated over dinner so many times, (not by me) they have become trite (or myth).

    I am looking on this very slow way of making meaningful bundles as if it is a daily art practice.

    And Kathy, thanks for that tidbit about Warhol. I had not heard it before.

  6. The binding looks beautiful.

  7. Again and again you astound me.
    And, it occurs to me if I have the guts to do something like this, I won't have to burn the books before I die. Though mine are not precisely art as yours are surely, they are certainly blocks of time lived. Even if they end up in a dumpster, they will be so beautiful if I have the guts, the dedication, and the focus. You are a wonder Judy, a natural wonder.

  8. what a legacy! I love how you've wrapped each one, sort of a containment

  9. i think this is an absolutely brilliant notion.

  10. Wow, what a beautiful way to honour your own past.

  11. you have long inspired me, the way you steadfastly find time to art in the midst of familying.

  12. This is a very meaningful and beautiful practice. More of us should do it. I like the thought, "blocks of time."


Thank you for taking the time to connect. Much appreciated.xx