DETAIL: “The Studio & Spirits Dream” Oil on Canvas.
I spent the last decade uprooted and on the road. I landed in a barn for awhile on a millionaire’s horse ranch, eventually turning the tack room into a studio that was liveable, enabling me to move out of the ranch’s bunkhouse (12 X 12 foot room with sink) and take up barn residence. It was a wonderful place for 4 years with horse pasture – about 200 occupants – out the door. Goats, sheep, mule named Corizon and Rambo the Ram in stalls and paddock on the other side, the Santa Lucia range all misty , mooned, sunned, gusted, and Milky Wayed before me. And it was the first functional studio I’d had in years. I wrote. And I painted.
This dream, this studio I painted there, is crowded with things I loved and hadn’t seen in ages, stored on the other side of America. Over filled with people I’d loved who’d died. With animals alive and not, who still owned my heart. With a chair from my twenties that no longer existed and the dream of my own bed again where such dreams could populate my nights. The cats who survived the move from Brooklyn then to Virginia’s wilderness then across country are on my bed, and some who departed before we got there, here too. My wonderful chocolate Lab – Rodin – is on alert at the bed’s end. A woodstove I’d seen once that would restore life to this heatless barn (I eventually got a kerosene heater). Some of my many thousands of books I carry with me that prop up my life are here, and all the intimate angels swinging through the undone work, the ready easel, the heart’s workplace.