Thursday, January 28, 2010

Returning Home

I love how art can become reincarnated. I created this piece above with Ms. Artist B at her home studio many months ago and now it reappears with some new elements for a new purpose.

Creating art has been a back-burner activity for me lately because I am teaching a community college reading and writing class this winter quarter. It has been a blast teaching this class -- challenging yet invigorating. I bring aromatherapy to every class, have my students move their bodies so they can learn and write better, and pretty much put on a one-woman show. Who knew I could do this?! Not me for sure.

With little time or room for art making these days, I still try to carve out time for a gesture of artiness here or there or a spontaneous collage right before bed. The piece above, though, reflects an assignment I recently gave my students: to create a visual depiction of/response to an essay from This I Believe II (our text for the class).* I told them I'd create an art piece, too. As soon as I agreed to participate, my body felt a little lighter and my heart said "Courtney, you get to create art!"

So I resurrected a piece I made in Ms. Artist B's workshop and added elements that reflected themes from the essay. To even play with an old art piece gave me such pleasure!

Try this:
Resurrect an old art piece that doesn't feel "done" yet, or doesn't seem to have a purpose. Give it a new intention for a new life, letting go of what it once was (this part can be challenging if you feel emotionally attached), and play with its colors and textures, images and gestures, until you have given it a new way to be in this world. And maybe you'll feel somewhat renewed, too.

*If you're curious, the assignment was to respond to this essay.


  1. Your students will appreciate a teacher who does for herself what she asks of them.

  2. What a fun class that must be. I'm sure you're a wonderful teacher.
    I think it was reqady for new marks.

  3. This is wonderful Courtney. I like to think a work of art can continue to grow as we do. Good for you, getting out and teaching, getting your students to move and use multiple senses in the class room. They will learn in a much deeper way and remember your lessons well.

  4. Thanks for the support, you lovely three!