Friday, August 27, 2010

"How does one become a butterfly? You must want to fly so much that you are willing to give up being a caterpillar." - Trina Paulus

I am very excited to be able to say that I have hit the 70 CHAIR MARK!!! It seems like only yesterday that I embarked upon this installation project with the goal of creating 105 chairs in the "Waiting" series, and I am seeing the end in sight! I am still very much engaged in the piece, although I thought I would bore of it quickly. Although the number 105 has come up frequently in my life, I am seriously considering making 108 chairs.

Religion and the arts

The number 108 is considered sacred in many Eastern religions and traditions, such as Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism, Sikhism and connected yoga and dharma based practices. For example, Hindu deities have 108 names. Recital of these names, often accompanied by counting of 108-beaded Mala, is considered sacred and often done during religious ceremonies. The recital is called namajapa. Accordingly, a mala usually has beads for 108 repetitions of a mantra. Likewise, Zen priests wear juzu (a ring of prayer beads) around their wrists, which consists of 108 beads.[1]

Japa Mala, or Japa beads, made from Tulasi wood. Consisting of 108 beads in total + the head bead.
The Lankavatara Sutra repeatedly refers to the 108 steps many temples have.[2]
However, in Tibetan Buddhism it is believed that there are 108 sins. And in Japan, at the end of the year, a bell is chimed 108 times to finish the old year and welcome the new one. Each ring represents one of 108 earthly temptations a person must overcome to achieve nirvana.
According to Marma Adi and Ayurveda, there are 108 pressure points in the body, where consciousness and flesh intersect to give life to the living being.
The distance between the Earth and Moon is 108 times the diameter of the Moon
The distance between the Earth and Sun is 108 times the diameter of the SunThe diameter of the Sun is 108 times the diameter of the Earth

I am thrilled that I have been staying committed and driven to create at least 2 chairs daily. It is a wonderful discipline, a true meditation.  I do find my self having to fight the worry about what I will do once the piece is finished. The challenge for me is to stay in the moment while creating each chair. They each seem to embody a different personality and each tells me a story. I have also created different "chapters" of chairs, with their chapter names, that are I am inscribing into the backs of each chair. This is a process that was not planned or intended, but just evolved. I am also actively collecting things that call out to me to sit upon each chair, as well as exploring the ways that I will incorporate text that I have collected through my dance, onto certain chairs. I look forward to the firing that will come sooner than I anticipated, although I will be away from the piece before I complete it when I go to Florida. I am sure I will collect many things, be they found objects, emotions and/or stories, that I will bring home and use to complete the final chapter of "Waiting".......

3 comments:

Dayna Collins said...

Hi Jo! I'm happy to let you know that you won the drawing for my Paper Remnant Journal! Go check out the Portland Art Collective blog to see the announcement. Diane has asked for you to contact her -- it is so we can get your address and I can put your journal in the mail! Yay . . . I'm so happy it was you! Dayna

Sherry Stewart said...

Jo. I found you on a blog just now concerning making alternative yogurts. I am a sculptor, ceramic artist too. Nice to connect with you.
Your chosen name rings such a bell. I have used, "up to my elbows in clay", on my voice mail for sometime.
I shall return to read your blog. I need inspiration.

Sherry Stewart said...

I would love to see your chairs!!!