Homage to Audubon
One night I was working in the studio and I heard a bird begin
to sing. I thought I had worked all night and it must be coming
up on dawn. I finished up my work and went up to bed, it was
11pm. The next night I was working in the studio again, I heard
a bird start to sing and I thought, oh no, I have worked all
night. I wrapped everything up and headed up to bed, it was 11pm,
again. Somewhere in my urban industrial neighborhood a light
goes on at 11pm, and a bird, somewhere, confused to the hour,
begins to sing. I felt sad about this, a bird, full of the essence
of instinct, greeted the morning many hours early. I also was
delight that the bird sings; that’s what birds do, they
sing; a teacher teaches, a dancer dances and a potter makes pots.
We are what we are.
I heard on national public radio that when John James Audubon
realized that he would not live long enough to paint all the
birds of North America, he begin to draw with both hands at the
same time. I thought, oh, I understand this. I know what passion
is. I began to look very closely at the John James Audubon watercolors.
They are an ultimate in beauty, craftsmanship, composition and
detail. They transport me to another place. I wanted to draw
them, over and over again. Somewhere, from the depth of magical
realism, inspired by 100 years of Solitude and the House of Sprits,
I am sure that when I drink from a cup with an Azure Warbler
on it, I will be able to sing like that bird. This exhibition
is born from these experiences.
This work would have not been possible without the dedicated
assistance of Maria Kretschmann and Dulcie Miller. I also thank
Gary Roper, the owner of the Washington Street Gallery, for
his never ending patience, his faith in potters everywhere
and his energetic support and investment in the field of utilitarian