STORY BEHIND THE PAINTING — Fremont or Anasazi
For an artist it is important to see beyond the obvious of a scene. In my petroglyph paintings I aim to capture and explore a realm of mystery and symbolism. If you have ever walked in a cave, visited ancient ruins such as Mesa Verde, or stood in front of wondrous natural formations like hoodoos you have experienced a touch of the mystical.
My new painting “Domesticity” deals with my perceived vision of what daily life might have looked like in the past. Using these actual, stylized rock art figures and animals from the Fremont or Anasazi period (from A.D. 300 to A.D. 1350) as a starting point, I wanted to convey a sense of what life entailed on every level of their being.
The linear divisions I created on the painting surface signify, for me, the nether or spiritual realm above, the physical plane of their existence (which occupies the center of the painting) and, mother earth below.
The symbols I chose have to do with the reality of their world. The undulating wave pattern has to do with fast moving water, the triangle represents an arrow or an arrowhead, the square represents a village and my marks at each end signifies the trail to that village, the staircase shape represents ladders or steps, the half circle is a mountain and the rake striations below is the symbol for rain in the Hopi tradition, the hourglass figure is a symbol of war. The double inverted figure has to do with the birthing process. These symbols and figures tell the story of their daily concerns, the life conditions that surrounded them and their relationship with the cosmos.