Good Morning, Universe! Meet Rocket, the newest addition to my personal art collection. This beautiful and very funky (!) sculpture is one of the pieces from Lance Letscher's April solo exhibition, The Perfect Machine, at D Berman Gallery here in Austin. The folks at the gallery were kind enough to let me look around as they were busy installing the current show, a two-person exhibition featuring the work of Faith Gay and Raymond Uhlir, which is fantastic by the way. But as I was looking around the gallery, I caught a glimpse of this beautiful sculpture in the back of the room...and it was calling my name. More of a shout really. I fell in love instantly and knew that it must be mine.
What is it about a work of art--an inanimate object--that it can speak so strongly and clearly to a person? Just kidding...pay attention!!! If you are reading this, then you likely already know that a work of art is not inanimate, but a collective of energy in the form of a composition. But that is another conversation entirely. Still, it is curious how one work of art can speak so intensely to one person and not to another. Oh, who knows! And who cares. But that is the way I collect art. If a piece calls my name ("say my name, say my name...ok, y'all, I promise I will stop it with the Destiny's Child nods...maybe), then I respond. For me the experience of finding meaning...truth...power...beauty...intimacy...emotion...in a piece of art is one of the purest, most instinctive reactions I know. And it is intensely personal. You can tell quite a lot about a person by experiencing their living space, but experiencing someone's art collection is even more insightful, as it is (hopefully, anyway) a collective expression of their intuitive responses to the universe as they know it...and probably, to a certain extent, reflective of how they see themselves fitting into it.
And today I see mine as a rocket. A vehicle sleek, fast, powerful, without limit, and capable of reaching its destination. In some ways a rocket is the ultimate symbol of travel, progress, and possibility. And yet Lance Letscher's Rocket is also playful and lighthearted. The colorful collage of vintage papers form an irregular, quilt-like pattern that evokes in me a serious case of nostalgia (the biggest, sweetest lie of all, but oh how I love it). It sends me back in time to a whole bunch of times and places in my life that I kind of remember, or maybe I don't, or maybe I am remembering them all wrong. Childhood memories, they way I felt when my duck Larry died, the color of the dried roses from my first boyfriend, the smell of the salty air when I used to got off the plane in Nassau, the olive green carpet from our old house on Magnolia drive. These shards of memory cover and glorify the powerful missle as it soars gracefully through space until it fulfills its potential by reaching its destination. Or in the words of my five year old son Julian (quoting the great Buzz Lightyear), "To Infinity and Beyond!"
Today I have a LOT of energy!!! And I am feeling so grateful. I have a lot of things to be thankful for no doubt, but right now I am thinking about my passion--painting--which has fortunately also turned into a fruitful and fulfilling career for me. I am thankful to have a passion in the first place because I don't know if everyone does. But to be able to make a living at it is even better. I believe it is my destiny, which I will get to in a minute.
But first I just want to say that I work with a pretty amazing group of people across the U.S.--art dealers, galleries, designers, and clients. And today was exceptional. I enjoyed a fun, laughter-filled (and very caffeinated) lunch with Laura Rathe today. (And we're going to Cabo...yay!) I also met with adorable and very talented Austin interior designer Lisa Parker and her sweet client Meredith (Meredith Ann...just like me!) today about a commissioned painting for her home. I finished a triptych commission for a Houston client and am almost through with a couple of commissioned pieces for a Nashville residence, courtesy of my old and very dear friend Randy Boliba (who happens to make killer steel sculpture by the way...I will post a pic of the one I own soon. He does not have a website because he is old school...booo, Randy!)
Anyway, the point is (sorry y'all, you know I'm a Southern girl telling a story)...I was thinking about destiny. Fate. I am and have always been a big believer in fate. So, of course being an artist, I am constantly finding meaning in things, events, and what not. It is my job, after all, to create meaning and space from scratch. But one cannot create from a vacuum. There must be source material. For me personally, the most intense source of inspiration is the human dynamic and energy that comes from interpersonal relationships...in a nutshell, the energy of life itself. As I was thinking about all of the above, my mother emailed me a photo of myself when I was about five years old...painting! She said, "Meredith Ann...look how precious! It looks so much like my pictures at this age! But not as precious, of course!" I love the way everything my mom says has the word precious in it. Anyway, the point is...coincidence? Hell no. More like a little answer from above that said, yeah this is your destiny, Meredith Ann! Love it, live it!!! And I am, y'all...it IS precious!