Thursday, July 23, 2009

Here's Your Portal to a New Day

The moment you awaken, the tilt of the sunlight on the shades reminds you that it is a new day. It's easy to forget that, once you get up and start the morning, though-- to do lists with only half the lines crossed off, cats meowing for their chow, kids racing around while you try to figure out what to fix for breakfast, coffee perking so long that it walks on its own because you forgot what you were doing. The hubbub of real life is why we need tangible reminders, symbolic pieces we can pick up and hold in our hands. When you stop for a moment to do that, you give your mind permission to quiet itself and reflect. That's what this Portal is all about. The rosette was inspired by symbols in Mississipian art (Southeastern Ceremonial Complex, if you like to explore things) and thoughts about shamans "traveling" to other worlds. Those thoughts melded with idea that altar objects and tiny shrines and momentos are important to us because they bring symbols to life for us.

That's as far as I got rambling about the meaning small tokens can have for us, and I know that there are as many reasons for appreciating and having these things as there are "things." This tangible reminder tangent has been percolating in my brain lately, though. Somewhere while googling and cruising sites mentioning altars and altar objects, I ran across a person who said the altar she set up in her living room served as a physical reminder to her to live the way she wants to live. We all do that, here and there in our lives, don't we? A treasured picture of the kids on our desk reminds us of why it's good to be a grownup with responsibilities (and of why it's good to learn to leave those responsibilities at a reasonable time so you can be home to see the school play). A seashell from that trip to the beach mentally transports us to a sunny, happy place (and gives us a respite from a less sunny day).

Well, what if we consciously left ourselves these reminders and tokens more often? While the snorting pig on the refrigerator door might be a practical way for dieters to use this idea, I'm really talking about using tokens and meaningful little pieces of art to trigger a good thought as soon as we see it. That's really what we're doing when we decorate our living rooms and plan our outdoor flower gardens, isn't it? Why not give ourselves permission to make this connection, as well as to make conscious decisions to make those connections happen on a daily basis? I'm going to do that, and I hope you will do it often, too. . . it can't hurt to take good care of your own happiness, can it :)


rosebud101 said...

Ang, I love that sculpture! It's amazing!

Karolen said...

Stunning sculpture. I love it. And your post, too... thanks for sharing. I love your writing, you are an inspiration!

Cindy Gimbrone said...

Hi Angie,

I love the direction your work is taking with the enamels. It's got subtle texture in places where it didn't have it before - makes me want to reach into the screen and touch it. Very cool.