Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Leaving Eugene

The view from my bedroom window - the Buddha I carved for Brian six months ago, now standing under an apple tree.

Above: I've been staying at the Dancing Heart community for the last two months working on this giant land art piece. I'd been working blind until we had this snowfall. It gave me a chance to see what I'd finished so far: a giant Star of David inside a 200 foot diameter circle. My problem was that Brian, who owns the four acre field, had divided the field into three fields with fences, thus making harvesting the tall, dense growth of alfalfa that chokes the fields a difficult procedure. To make my lines I had to weedwack, then rake, then weedwack and rake again before Brian was able to mow part of the circle. It was a lot of work and I was unable to get the weedwacker started so needed Matt to help me, but that's another story. Then the snow and rain rain rain came and the field flooded and now has a stream running through it. I really learned a lot by doing this project. I've learned that I have to choose a site with access. The giant drawings are easy and I can do them quickly, if I don't have to deal with fences, overgrown alfalfa, and streams. So my next project will be somewhere open, without trees or alfalfa (leaving that to the crop circle people). My goal is to make art that can only be seen on Google Satellite or from an airplane.

I've gone back to making books. I showed Laura (above) how to make a wooden book with a piece of wood from the firewood pile. She used her tattoo as her inspiration.

I've started making Facebooks. The first (above) was just a one minute profile drawing that I cut out and carved. My second attempt (below) is of Brian. I took a snap shot of his profile then turned it into a book. These are a lot of fun to make.

I made an OM book for one of the guys here to give to his girlfriend. I don't think I've ever painted a whole cover before, but I wanted it to look like the Tibetan OM's. The last two books are poetry books with 100 blank pages for a poet to fill in. I made three lip and two eye poetry books from wood I got at MECCA, a store in Eugene that sells recycled art stuff, cheap.

I finally finished a short version of my homeless documentary for the Eugene DIVA Film Festival. I coupled the audio stories of five people living on the streets with dozens of photographs of people holding homemade signs, some funny. It's called Signs of the Times and I would love to get feedback on it.

I want to also share this video I shot of the drumming at the Eugene Saturday Market.

I couldn't stand the 40 days and 40 nights of dark, sunless rain and called my friend Deborah in Hawaii and asked her if I could visit. She immediately invited me and told me to get a one way ticket. Since I may stay for two or more months, I decided she was right. I met Deb in 2006 when we were roommates for a couple of weeks while Wwoofing in a Yoga Center in Sacramento. Later she came to stay with me for a night when I was caretaking a house in the Santa Cruz Mountains. She's invited me several times to visit her, and luckily has a spare bedroom in her house on Maui. I also want to do some Wwoofing (room and board in exchange for gardening on organic farms) and there are a bunch of places on Maui and the other islands. The funny thing is, just after I'd bought my one way ticket and had given up on Eugene and making more friends, I got an e-mail from Delina who I'd sent something to weeks ago from an ad on Craigslist. Long story short I ended up meeting four very interesting women and we learned that we are all the eldest daughters in our families. Gary, Ellen's husband, shot this photo. From left to right is Delina, from South Africa, me, Mary who travels the world teaching, Clare, who travels the world helping people, and Ellen, an attorney who also travels.


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