Marilyn intends that "the art reflect the dreams, commitment, and nurturing environment necessary to make the aspirations of our community a reality- a daily reminder that life can be respectful, beautiful, and connected to the larger world. Affirming that art can play a role in building the humane world we all envision."
Personal Paintings Artist Statement
Becoming and renewing-through an ancestral visual language is at the core of my work. Through painting, I connect to my ancestors; to a Lifeway (pre-christian European Lifeway) that has been buried, lost, castoff, and forgotten in the often forced immigration to the "New World". Such Lifeways are powerful, humane, spiritual, and fully multi-dimensional, as are all Original Peoples’ Lifeways.
I make paintings to absorb the images, signs, symbols, legends and ways of being of that time so that I may continue to live them and learn from them today. It has become an essential practice for me to ‘know thyself’. I’ve learned from the Original People (Indigenous/Native) friends, here in Minnesota, that knowing oneself, is knowing one’s Ancestral People and their Lifeway.
While I make paintings for me, I am also sharing this ancestral knowledge for those who need it or want it. We, of European heritage, on this American continent uprooted ourselves from our ancestral origins. These paintings connect to my ancient past while helping me live and create in contemporary times. I dream, that they might help others reveal and renew their ancestral Lifeway, visual language, their unique and healthier way of being.
My journey-a number of years ago- to northern Europe was made possible through a research fellowship. This hands-on study has given me an authentic beginning, a familiarity with the knowledge, philosophy, mythology, and iconography of my ancestors visual language.
Such imagery, is the pictorial subtext of any Lifeway. Symbols, even patterns are seldom genuinely abstract- they have ties to nature; to human relationship to all of life. My life experience in uncovering, imitating, re-creating this ancient visual language has inspired a body of work, centering on symbolism of our Mother, the Earth. This symbolic system, represents cyclical time: it manifests in the images of dynamic motion: whirling and twisting spirals, circles, crescents, horns, sprouting seeds. We are just beginning to understand our long alienation from our authentic European Heritage which was harmonic, gylanic, and earth centered.
I will be painting in a square stretched linen format with alkyd paint. I will continue my research, allowing for new information to inform the oeuvre. I plan to work large i.e. 6’ X 6’ and small; 12” X 12”. I imagine layering the imagery, with possible screened traditional patterns as the first layer. For the palette; since much of the imagery are found on pots, vases and other ceramics, earthen golds, bronzes, deep reds continuing the palette of the beginning works in this series.
Becoming and renewing-through an ancestral visual language is at the core of my work.