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04.09.2012 ~ still tethered

by | Apr 9, 2012 | collage, female, mixed media painting, odes and offerings, santa fe new mexico, woman

The little girl is me. I had never seen this picture before I found it last year in my parent’s things. I remain a little bit astonished by it….the sweet innocence of this lovely child. How I’d like to wrap my arms around her and gently counsel and compassionately her on a few things.
I love the chunky ribbon of yarn in her hair, and the delicate way she is holding the flower stem.

To the right of her…the woman in white grew out of a photo of an anonymous woman from the turn of the last century. The photo happened to crop out her head, as the photographer was more focused on other things going on in the picture frame, her figure being secondary. I’ve made her prominent, elongating her white dress making it larger than life.
I didn’t premeditate this painting, it just grew as the painting evolved, first with the image of the white dress, I think, and then the photo of me. The figure in the white dress reminds me of two art historical images:

That of Edith Minturn Stokes as portrayed by John Singer Sargent in his portrait Mr. & Mrs. I.N. Phelps Stokes:

and James Abbott McNeill Whistler’s painting Symphony in White, No.1: The White Girl:

The string tethering the little girl to the woman in the white gown in my painting is from a tea bag. Ghosted in the background are fragments of Barbara Rockman’s poem, per the theme of this series of paintings.