Art > Exhibition, Summer 2016

birds painting Margaret Wise Brown Pussy Willow motherhood holding space sacred space
Red Birds (from Pussy Willow)
oil on canvas
36 x 48 inches
2016

I organized this composition highlight the synchronicity that I discovered while painting the other Pussy Willow paintings (more on those below.) I bought the pastel drawing by Matthew Mullins shown on the wall in this painting in Santa Fe while visiting my mother in 2004. It wasn't until I was painting the Pussy Willow paintings this month that I realized the red birds look bear uncanny resemblance to the red birds in the Pussy Willow book. The painting also illustrates reading books to my kids in our bed as another way of holding space.

The Pussy Willow paintings are based on images from a "Little Golden Book" called Pussy Willow by Margaret Wise Brown. My mother read this book to me many times as a child.

The cat names himself after the plant, Pussy Willow, because he thought he looked like the fluff that appears in early spring before the blossoms. Once the bush flowers the cat can no longer identify the pussy willow and goes on a quest to find it.

My mother saved my book and as I read it to my children recently I was taken by the familiarity of the images, and simultaneously by how little I understood the story as a child.

Growing up in New Mexico I didn't understand that pussy willow bushes grew and changed through the seasons. I remember just being happy that the cat found them again (the next spring) after a circuitous journey of meeting many unhelpful animals in the forest.

As an artist and a mother I am working with the transformation to parenthood and how this relates to being on a quest for alignment with my own true Self.