Nature has been my inspiration, my sanctuary and my guide throughout my life as an artist. Though my art has evolved and changed with the different roles I have played and the different work I have done, the underlying theme has been our return to a healthy relationship with “mother nature”; one that honors and holds her sacred.
While raising my five children on a small family farm in Central Oregon, I did mostly plein air painting. These large, representational landscapes expressed the beauty and transient moods of nature. I worked for many years as a Registered Nurse in obstetrics and later as a counselor in a domestic violence shelter for women and children. These experiences created a bedrock of knowledge about and passion for women’s issues. After the last of my children entered college, I returned to the university to complete my fine arts degree. These changes initiated a period of abstract exploration; the freedom of shape, color, and composition in my monotype prints, reflecting the transformation occurring in my personal life.
About twelve years ago, in the midst of my printmaking, images of a horned woman along with her title -Return to Us That Which Has Been Taken From Us. i.e., HONOR, POWER AND GLORY- continued to appear in dreams and daydreams and my work once again changed direction. I returned to large figurative oil painting as one by one, archetypal feminine figures appeared, offering profound insights and gifts of healing. They portray “feminine” qualities inherent in all humans, such as compassion, creativity, relationship, nurturance, empowerment, equality; qualities that are not valued in our patriarchal society.
I believe the root cause of our social and environmental crisis is the systematic desecration and oppression of the feminine and nature by a patriarchal (dominator) paradigm. Unbalanced, the masculine principle has waged war on women's bodies, the human spirit and the planet itself. My 30 paintings in the Pilgrimage series attempt to illustrate the redemptive evolution that could occur if we return to a sense of the sacred in nature; if we are able to rebalance and make harmonious the dance of masculine and feminine energies.