painting series 3 'cave paintings'
[40 paintings 18" x 24" and 24" x 24" some with attachments]
February 20 marks three years of painting after ten years of not. The significance was not in the return to painting, but in the emergence of a totally different perception of art - of content - and, therefore, the reason to paint.
CAVE PAINTINGS is the third series in a succession of some 200 paintings in which woman's image - her spiritualness, physicalness, autonomy, protest, and her archetype - is proclaimed.
CAVE PAINTINGS is a visualization of some of the various attitudes which most affected my coming to terms with how woman has been perceived, the positive and negative associations, in 'prehistory' and 'history.'
The first half of the series was inspired, in particular, by the writings of Merlin Stone, Judy Chicago, Elizabeth Davis, Rachel Levy, and the Heresies collectives.
Paintings in the second half are based on the Silbury Hill, the tallest prehistoric structure in Europe, discussed by Michael Dames in his book The Silbury Treasure: The Great Goddess Rediscovered. The first twelve titles are Mr. Dames' own words for the varying syntheses inspired by the Hill, a monument rising 130 feet in Avebury parish, North Wiltshire.
The last painting in the series perhaps sums up what woman are up against as we move to reclaim our heritage, right our image (destroy the many misconceptions) and, in the broader sense, restore meaning to our lives, which these last several thousand years of patriarchal domination have inverted.
Merlin Stone, WHEN GOD WAS A WOMAN; Judy Chicago, THE DINNER PARTY; Elizabeth Davis, THE FIRST SEX; Rachel Levy, RELIGIOUS CONCEPTIONS OF THE STONE AGE; Ester Harding, WOMAN'S MYSTERIES; Wallis Budge, AMULETS AND TALISMANS; HERESIES: A FEMINIST PUBLICATION ON ART & POLITICS.
Special thanks to Mr. Dames and Ms. Chicago for permission to quote on the paintings.
also on view [see painting series 8]
This set of window paintings* is a return to a technique/theme with which I was involved 20 years ago. In those days, the window assemblages were 'purely' windows and led eventually to a formal/minimal statement of windows as squares, rectangles, and stripes. I rejected any symbolic (female) implication. These days, I welcome the interpretation.
'One-In-Herself' refers to 'virgin'. In the old true sense of the word, virginity was NOT a physical condition but, rather, a spiritual understanding woman (and, even society) had of herself. She was her own person.
Marlene M.Wills [Mountain]