“All children play. All children dance the cosmic dance of Shiva, creating and destroying, and all children, if allowed to do so, make meaningful things. Most people go on to other ways of exercising power over the world, but some – the shy, the schizoid, those born like malformed onions with a skin too few for their particular circumstances – find in the privacy, in the arcane solace of making artworks, a way of controlling their world. These children learn that to scribble until scribbles become symbols, constitutes a playground over which they preside as gods, in a universe inhabited by adults and incomprehensible rules. Those of you who can recall being punished by having your artworks confiscated or destroyed, will remember how gross such violations were – out of all proportion to the loss of a badly drawn bunny or a cardboard house. It rendered us powerless, robbed us of autonomy. Such vandalism should not be part of the armoury of parents and teachers”
Words by Judith Mason.
I did not study art on school level. I was enrolled in private art classes though, but the teacher unfortunately did not inspire, so I spend that time walking around in the local art gallery. That is were I encountered the work of Judith Mason. The first piece I ever saw was “Catwalk girl”. Still my favourite, but these two works above I adore as well. I found solace in her work since my parents and that specific teacher didn’t understand me. I don’t have any of my childhood drawings/scribbles. I guess my parents didn’t see the need in keeping them. Maybe they didn’t like them, or maybe it wasn’t pretty enough. Who knows. When I saw the work of Judith Mason it felt as if I understood myself.
I will not enroll my children in art classes. We spend our time playing in the garden and I let them draw what they see. Sometimes we visit art galleries together or look at pictures of art, and I ask them what they think. The latter is very entertaining and insightful. So many art teachers wants to teach children and others how paint, draw, sculpt according to them, instead of just teaching them how to see, feel, and experience.
Anyway, I’m busy wrapping up the loose ends for my solo show later this month….and starting to feel nervous and jittery. Last night I cleaned out the toolboxes and rearrange the shelves in my studio to calm my nerves. Maybe these feelings has nothing to do with the show coming up, but maybe I feel this way because its the month of March?!
” The third figure in our pageant clatters by in a chariot drawn by two horses, Terror and Flight. It is a threatening figure, brandishing a long spear, lifting a gleaming shield to the heaven, and raising its head on hight, so that the lightnings play about the great helmet. This is Mars, the god of war…..
Mars was associated in their minds with thunder and lighting, and yet the Romans believed that the woodpecker tapping the trunk of a tree was the answer of this blustering, noisy god to their prayers. March is very often a blustering month” (From an encyclopaedia)
So off I go to have some coffee in the garden and trying to find that woodpecker!