Those of you who know me know that I’m crazy about totems. And back when I lived in Germany I wrote about seeing Hundertwasser’s work. Those amazing columns! I’ve mentioned before how much I love cairns and what a freak I am if I stumble across a tower of rocks. I’ve contemplated for a long time what makes me so attracted to tall or stacked work. Why do I love stuff that’s balanced and piled up on itself?
My dear friend Dr. Anita left the most beautiful comment to a recent post:
This idea of the totem is profound in so many ways. The totem suggests that what’s top and bottom matters in a hierarchical way. But what’s interesting about the totem is that the bottom holds up the top. This is what makes your work democratic. The idea that all can contribute and that the top is nothing without the support structure.
Well that nails it.
Here are some images from a collaborative journal project where I altered other people’s pages with the same stencil. I like seeing them all laid out together. It’s crazy to me how the exact same stencil can look so completely different.
I guess a sampler isn’t a sampler without a rock tower.
And here’s a parting behind-the-scenes shot of my stencil in action. I was going to crop out the hose and watering can in the background but then decided not to. It looks like I had enough of yard work for the day, threw down my tools and started to work on the journal. That very well may have been what happened. So why lie?