Knowing ourselves to be practicing artists who are highly sensitive people (HSP’s) we are each comfortable with an HSP trait we both share—that is we tend to do a great deal of “processing” both in our interior lives and outwardly in our conversations. This “processing” trait is especially evident as we approach a new work of art. We are individually prone to think long and hard before we actually go to our studios for the hands-on making of a fresh creation.
What will we paint or build or assemble? How will we approach a new work? Will our initial inspiration sufficiently catalyze us over that midway hump we are sure to encounter and then carry us through to completion? Is our original concept sufficiently formed to begin or is our “processing” still too wishy-washy to give us a clear beginning that will lead us to a positive outcome? Will our new idea be best expressed on a 2D picture plane or in three dimensions? What materials will we want to use? Do we have what we need? Do we have time enough to fully develop and execute our chosen ambition, or will our day jobs place too many time restraints on our ability to finish our undertaking and meet an anticipated deadline? So much to consider—so best to start early.
David did start early with a line drawing in a birthday gift sketchbook from our west coast family. Actually his painting in this year’s ANNUAL MEMBERSHIP EXHIBITION probably began more than four years ago on that very first night we stood beneath a canopy of stars outside his double-wide in Lamar, Missouri, and rang his brass Tibetan singing bowl as we lifted up our evening thanksgivings and requests. David’s bowl (first acquired by a trade of his art) has become ours to see every day resting in our bedroom on a Chinese-red temple table with one slightly wonky, spindly leg. Every morning we begin our day ringing our bowl then turning up our special clay gift cups to receive the blessings the day will bring. Every night we ring our bowl then turn down our gift cups to invite a night of sweet and restful repose.
The image of our bowl is emblazoned in both our minds. The tactile feel of the bowl and cups are physical sensations we will carry with us in our spirits always. Perhaps some day one or both of us will feel compelled to make art to honor our cups. For now David has chosen to honor the image of our bowl.
“Share Ring” is the title David has given to his MEMBERSHIP bowl painting. He told me “I knew what I wanted the painting to look like, but I didn’t know why. I saw the image in my mind’s eye before I saw the meaning and gained understanding.” As the painting developed over time the significance became more apparent; however, he was so caught up in the “processing” and making of “Share Ring”, he did not comprehend the full interpretation of his creation until I asked him to give me words to describe the painting. His unconscious intentions were revealed and came to the surface with clarity when he spoke his description to me:
“The central image is our prayer bowl—seen as two halves brought together as we are every day, sharing a middle and forming a pod. The blossoming pod opens out as though flowering.
The two halves are two equal parts each with individuality coming from a common center containing compressed energy that opens and is released out into the universe. In this way we are the same: we start out each day with a concentration of energy between us, then we individually carry out this energy into our workday worlds.
‘Share Ring’ is about sharing and giving in equal parts—one side not more dominant than the other. Each bowl is slightly unique in character though originating from the same nucleus—from the same origin but different.”
Beyond being a beautiful depiction of one of our shared spiritual practices, David’s “Share Ring” represents the collective magic of the community of the member artists who comprise the heartbeat—the energetic center—of artCentral. Come and see what I mean. Come see how artCentral’s 2021 ANNUAL MEMBERSHIP EXHIBITION showcases the ringing of many artists living and loving and sharing their singular lives in a magnificent communal expression.
The ANNUAL MEMBERSHIP EXHIBITION opens at noon on Friday, June 4, 2021. The PICNIC and AWARDS will be in the evening, 6:00-8:00 p.m. Reservations for the catered picnic dinner, $10 per guest, may be made at (417) 358-4404 and firstname.lastname@example.org.