I am so excited (and relieved!) to share this new creation with you! It’s a technique I made up in search of a way to convey a memory of light. This piece took 5 months, about 10 miles of thread, lots of trial and error and a reserve of patience and discipline I did not know I had. The most common question I received from people who saw work in progress was: “What inspired you to create this? I have never seen anything like this before!” ….Quickly followed by a comment that I must have too much time on my hands, hahaha! So I wanted to share my inspiration and the process!
....Growing up in Estonia, a country in the Baltics, we would often go mushroom picking in the forests. (How I love mushroom picking!!). I especially loved those light, airy forests: tall, slender pines sticking straight out of the silver moss where those foxy chanterelles would hide! The light in those forests would travel, break and continue again creating magical rays of translucent light, intersected by the verticals of the pines. I remember thinking “it’s like it’s threaded by light!” over and over… It was more of a sensation in the body, a visual mystery! The memory of those forests stayed forever connected to the idea of light being like a thread.
...I am in awe of the Grand Canyon. It moved and changed me the first time I experienced it. But truthfully, I never wanted to paint it, nor is it my most sought out subject in art. That was until I saw “Grand Canyon-Slot Canyon” by an incredible artist and human being Quang Ho. !!!!! The lights, shadows, cools, warms, chaotic brushstrokes to a point of abstraction - all I could think of was “threaded by the light!” - it’s like he painted the Grand Canyon the way I felt in that Estonian forest! “Threads, threads, threads….” - I was obsessing with this sensation for weeks till I finally grabbed a scrap of plywood, and chaotically wrapped it in light blue and yellow threads. This one square was enough to commit to wrapping (and re-wrapping) over 300+ pieces.
...5 months, 10 miles or thread, and a **** load of trial and error later - it is complete! Each wood piece (it’s Baltic wood!) was painted and wrapped one color, one thread at a time; some pieces have up to 5 different colors taking from 10 mins to 40 mins each! Smooth color transitions are achieved by spacing out each color just right so it appears gradual at a distance. Thread is wrapped intentionally, parallel to each previous line, just like the stratas of the canyon! I feel that these smooth transitions of color fields bring serenity and calmness to the scene, just like the Grand Canyon feels.
It was indeed THE Grand Canyon project: some of the areas were redone 3-4 times.The second day of wrapping was so intense, my guts were twisting and turning with impatience and frustration that I committed myself to an eternal task. I learned to meditate through it and just be. When the piece was close to done, I realized I did not like about a third of what I have done. So I took a blade, sliced them open and started all over again.
I knew this piece would come alive in the Sun as layers of thread would glow and vibrate! But something even more magical happened when I took it outside: when the Sun touched it just right, all those pieces, all those layers and textures caught light, cast shadow and moved - it looked like a beautiful sunrise in the Grand Canyon!
Thank yous: I want to say a giant thank you to my friend Orlando Ortiz, who helped me so much with this project! A lot of the sky is his and it’s glorious! Thank you Xerocraft for being so helpful and smart and letting me use your tools!
Hope you enjoy this piece and I hope I have enough insanity in me to do another piece sometime! It will be on display at Untitled Gallery and in my studio - come by to check it out!