October 20, 2018

Tender Harvest

My heart is so full of love for and gratitude to all the good folk who came and bore witness to my exhibition opening Tender Harvest last night.
I love the way that a rectangular room, miraculously transformed itself into a circle as the work was hung. This intimate, round space then required the anchoring of an alter, so that when my reflections were shared into the space it became a ceremony, a circle of shining faces to greet me in the round.
There was something sweet in this unintended ritualising of what has felt potent initiatory work for me, the shadow work of tending to all the wounded aspects that arise to be seen and healed, allowing me to share my work and to stand and share my voice from a place of truth.
The outer expression inconsequential, it sometimes seems, in relation to the powerful inner workings of the journey.


I would like to take a moment to speak for my paintings because to me they have been way-showers, truth-speakers, meaning makers, gifts from my own chthonic underworld to my emergent and awakening sense of Self.
As someone who has struggled to find a place for myself in this world, these paintings have been one of the ways of mirroring myself back to myself, so that I could see who it is that I truly am.
They have been made as offerings to the threshold of my soul, as offerings to the creator spirit, so that I might gaze upon that nascent emergence of what it was an unknowable part of me knew to be truth. They are a struggling to make conscious, the enveloping world of my own interiority, which has always, painfully, held more power than the lived reality, a making solid of what is experienced as an enchantingly unformed realm of my own imaginative solace.
They are a way of coming to know myself, and to push back against the fear that I was nothing and nobody, with nothing to say.
They are my rebellion against being handed a concensus reality, they are my way of loving that which asked to birth itself through my being.
They have been created at times as remedy for the despair that has teetered to engulf me, they are gestures from my body, they are hewn from the blood of my womb, and the tears of my heart.
These paintings are my prayers, prayers for unity in the face of disintegration, for cohesion in the face of strife, for birth in the face of inertia, for Love In the face of fear, for selfhood in the face of annihilation.
Each mark made, a binding of myself back into this manifest reality from the other more compelling dreamweave of myself, each scratch of the pen a compelling gesture of assertion of my own vision as something of value, as something of worth. The choice to know my way of seeing as worthy of sight. The carving of a place, a space, for self in the world.
These paintings have been, over the years, a way of experiencing myself as real, in case I came to mean nothing at all, in case in the gaze of a world that honours not the animal beingness, I might become invisible.
It is not an easy thing to be an artist in this world, it is more and more a leap of faith that anyone will find a body-born unique, visceral expression of worth. I am so very grateful for your witness here, for helping me to complete this creative cycle. This for me the hardest part, the giving over, the being seen, the letting go, like a mother who has clung too long at her cubs fully grown.
This is a part of the tender harvest of the last decade of life for me, a visible substrata of lived expression, carved out between the care giving and the survival, in spite of procrastination and a powerful will to excarnate, despite feelings of defeat and resignation, there have also been songs and poems and not least of all my precious children. This is a selection of the fruit that has been born of my deep rooted striving to make sense of things, and to know myself and I am deeply grateful that you could join me for their harvesting.

Word and images © Lucy Pierce 2018