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The Leenhouts Gallery champions local emerging and established artists, particularly those whose work resonates with our Unitarian Universalist principles. The Gallery strives to build community through the visual arts and provides a space for exhibiting artwork that grapples with issues such as diversity, tolerance, and respect for the interdependent web of all existence.
CURRENTLY IN THE LEENHOUTS GALLERY...
April 6 - May 18, 2013: CathyJean Clark
My work expresses the spiritual and mystical forces that I experience as nature. These experiences are the source for my drawings and prints. There is an inner spirit that permeates all of life. I feel a profound connectedness to this spirit in nature and I hope to express this through my work.
Living in rural Wisconsin gives me many opportunities to have these experiences. I believe that Wisconsin is a very special place, evident by its beauty. Through my work I hope to express to the viewer these experiences. My recent body of work is based on my experience with the woods and fields of Wisconsin, my garden, and the meaning they have to me.
The natural world is very important to the Wisconsin landscape. I have been researching why it is so important to so many people, including myself. There seems to be many deep archetypal connections to the land that we are not aware of consciously and do not fully understand and comprehend. I believe “nature” to be how we are physically and spiritually connected to the earth. It is our psychic umbilical cord to our planet. Through my prints and drawings I hope to awaken these deep subconscious feelings and connections that are primal to our humanness.
The sense of rhythm in my work is to express the cycles that are an integral part of nature and so common to life itself. The rhythm of birth, life, fruition, death, decay and rebirth. Matter being transformed from one form to another. My work is often dark in order to communicate that there is so much more to life than what we see with our eyes. We need to engage all our senses, even senses that we may not be aware of at this time. The darkness suggests us to travel from the conscious world to the unconscious world.
For me there is a dialogue that takes place between me, the press, plate, acid and image. I dig, scrape, etch and burn my plates. This is very similar to planting, weeding and cultivating ones garden. I cultivate the image like one cultivates ones flowers.
By working and reworking the surfaces of my plates and drawings I can achieve a rich mysterious surface. I etch layers onto the plates which are scraped in some places and left in other places. These layers refer to the rich layers of compost and mulch. Images that imply there is much more then one can see. The essence of images that were once there is now only a feeling, a mark left to prove their existence.
I, like Emerson, realize that there is much more to nature than one often sees. In “Nature” Ralph Waldo Emerson writes: “Standing on the bare ground my head bathed by the blight air, and uplifted into infinite space - All mean egotism vanishes. I become a transparent eyeball. I am nothing, I see all, the current of the Universal being circulated through me. I am part or parcel of God.”
- CathyJean Clark