Sunday, March 16, 2008

Bats, Butterflies & the Wind

48" x 60"
original oil on canvas

One dreary morning in January I sat sipping coffee and flipping through newspapers. An article about global warming caught my eye. It said flying fox bats were dropping dead in Australia and butterflies were going extinct in the Alps.

The photo accompanying the article showed a little bat panting in a futile attempt to keep cool. Its face reminded me of my cat who died two months earlier. I still miss her. She was sweet and gentle and died of kidney failure.

Seeing that little bat face, with its uncanny resemblance to my cat, made me feel sad for all the helpless creatures who find themselves at the mercy of forces greater than themselves. I often wonder about the complexities of global warming. It is really causing bats and butterflies to become extinct? And if so, what species is next?

I can’t answer these questions and I don't know who can. The only thing I do know is that a painting was born that day.

Painting inspirations are elusive and transparent. They flow through my mind while life happens. Sometimes they manifest in pictures and clippings from magazines or quick sketches I tear from the corners of notebook paper. Many never reach my canvas, expiring instead in a dust-collecting pile of clippings, sketches and photos.

This one made it to the canvas! The little bat faces that remind most people of Dracula or late-night horror movies, are like cries for help. Their little faces remind me of my cat, who trusted me, right up to the end. But I couldn’t save her.

The real question is, can anything save us from global warming?  

I labored on this painting from January until March while my life unfolded in a whirl of unexpected complexities. During that time, as always, my painting kept me grounded. Here's my painting: Bats, Butterflies and the the Wind, in honor of my cat, and all the creatures that put their trust in man.

About My Palette

This is my palette. The colors were bright, primary and intense.

During this time I moved my studio. You can see this painting in my new studio.

You can also see  photos of the preliminary composition.

I hope you find a connection to this painting like I did!

Sincerely, Marie



beautiful work!

meenakshi said...

Marie, your work draws in and then lets fly! It went so well with a post I was making at The Power of Light group on Gaia [] that I have taken the liberty of posting it and also linking to your blog. Please let me know if this is acceptable to you.
Also, you might enjoy meeting other artists at DREAMS of ARTISTS™ []