Sunday, February 12, 2012

Gourd Translations

The Celebration of Fine Art gets so many visitors from all over the world that I often find myself at a real loss when describing the material from which I do my sculptural vessels.  So, here is "gourd" in a wealth of languages!  And some pictures of fine art gourd sculptures I now have at the Celebration.

Full Bodied
Red Red Poppies

In A Poppy Garden

Translations of 'gourd'Kernerman English Multilingual Dictionary 

Sense 1: a type of large fruit, or the plant on which it grows.
 gourd in Afrikaans: komkommer, karkoer
 gourd in Arabic: يَقْطين، قَرع

 gourd in Bulgarian: кратуна
 gourd in Brazilian: cabaça

 gourd in Chinese: 葫芦
 gourd in Croatian: sušena tikva

 gourd in Czech: tykev
 gourd in Danish: græskar
 gourd in Dutch: pompoen
 gourd in Estonian: pudelkõrvits
 gourd in Finnish: kurkkukasvi

 gourd in Farsi: هر گیاهی از تیره کدو
 gourd in French: gourde
 gourd in German: der   
 gourd in Greek: (νερο)κολοκύθα

 gourd in Hebrew: דְלַעַת 

 gourd in Hindi: कद्दू के वर्ग की सब्जी
 gourd in Hungarian: (dísz)tök
 gourd in Icelandic: grasker
 gourd in Indonesian: labu

 gourd in Italian: (frutto delle cucurbitace
 gourd in Japanese: ひょうたん
 gourd in Korean: 박과(科) 열매의 총칭

 gourd in Latvian: (pudeļveida) ķirbis
 gourd in Lithuanian: moliūgas
 gourd in Malay: labu
 gourd in Norwegian: gresskar
 gourd in Pashto: اونورو شيانو په حيث كار ځ

 gourd in Persian: هر گیاهی از تیره کدو
 gourd in Polish: dynia

 gourd in Portuguese: cabaça
 gourd in Romanian: tigvă

 gourd in Russian: тыква бутылочная
 gourd in Serbian: tikva
 gourd in Slovak: tekvica

 gourd in Slovenian: buča
 gourd in Spanish: calabaza

 gourd in Swedish: pumpa
 gourd in Taiwanese: 葫蘆
 gourd in Thai: น้ำเต้า

 gourd in Turkish: su kabağı
 gourd in Ukrainian: гарбуз
 gourd in Urdu:ی پیٹھا، گھیا، لوک
 gourd in Vietnamese: quả bầu; quả bí

Images of 'gourd'Inappropriate image? 

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Maya Angelou & Inspiration For A Painting

(This is a re-post from last year.  The painting is hanging at the Celebration of Fine Art, Scottsdale, AZ until Mar 25, and is available for purchase.)

Inspiration is a full and varied thing, sometimes young and twitching, other times a vibrational note struck on a crystal glass.  It is a muse dancing in your dreams, a wood nymph catching your eye from behind the twilight lit forest.  It is shattered light from a glass clad urban high rise tossing itself across the candy apple red of your car hood.  It may be a grand philosophical book, read in fits and starts, embedding something unforgettable in your brain, or something inconsequential – a scrap of paper caught on the breeze, landing in your lap like a message from a parallel world.

Last fall I was reading Maya Angelou’s poem, I Know Why the Cage Bird Sings.  I had, at the time, been struggling with unresolved ideas for a series of large paintings about women and the patterns of their lives.  The original idea was not coming clear for me.   About to abandon the whole concept and taking a few days to get away from what I was feeling was a stuck spot, I closed the jars of paint, cleaned my tools and left the studio.  Landing on the sofa with a pile of books, I settled in for some quiet time.  Maya showed up. 

The measure of a good metaphor is how well it connects to the human condition.  The caged bird seems nearly limitless, as does the meaning of “singing” or voicing what is within.  The voice of inspiration nearly deafened me.  Books fell from the sofa in my rush to the studio.

Who knows why the Universe graces us with taps on the shoulder?  Not I.  But I do know, after 30 odd years of being an artist, that these gracious or raucous or accidental taps are better acknowledged and noted than ignored.


Begin.  The surface lies before me – the caged bird sings of freedom -  I scoop texture paste onto the board and with the largest trowel I have, spread it in quick broad strokes, leaving trepidation behind – the free bird leaps on the back of the wind – trails and rivers, paths and raindrops show up under the tool, taking me somewhere, bringing someone to me – I feel a door opening – light? Quickly I mix a wash in creamy pale yellow – pour it on, catching it in the river/paths/raindrops – the free bird thinks of another breeze – and warm lemon curd yellow floats into my world.  Are you there?

Waiting.  Slow drying, but surprises appear.  I tape the poem to the wall, print big enough to make out as I work.  So many images surface in my mind’s eye, call to me, then drift only to be replaced, crowded out by others.  Returning to my work, I see a delicate head wrap, in tiny pattern, and then a sleeve, richly embroidered.  She’s here.  Waiting for me to give her voice.  Where is the window from which you watch?  A swallow brings you an offering of berries.  You gaze at me, Madonna of the Swallows.  I hear your voice.
Madonna of the Swallows
48" x 84"


The universe sends Muse and Inspiration to whisper in your ear that there are fantastic things for you to do – soulful songs to write, luscious colors to mix into unpredictable combinations, elements and molecules to construct the never before seen.  There are birds to be let free and voices to hear calling.  

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Husband/Wife Collaboration

After 23 years of marriage, Syed and I have finally collaborated on four artworks!  Amazing!  Not that we've actually been negotiating all these years...just that we finally got it together and figured out how to make two very divergent styles work.  And we did it without least he did it without arguing... I, of course, had to argue a little.

So, this is how it went.  After a couple of years of trying to figure out how to actually mix our media (glass, metal, gourds, painting), we moved on.  Mixing all those things just seemed ridiculously forced and a little silly.  Next, we spoke about gathering mixed materials for the re-purpose style and mixing that with glass.  Appealing at a casual glance, but it just didn't come together.  Next we tried on the idea of me painting the glass.  Not.  How bout working bits of glass into paintings?  Really?  And we moved on.

This year, inspired by a young woman doing stencil work in Salisbury, we were able to see how my drawing and Syed's abstract glass and metal could come together.  This is just the tip of the iceberg.  We could easily see how to develop it after these first four were finished.  I won't talk about those developments, just to say that a door has opened and we can see the highway before's going to be a great fun trip, and you will be seeing more of us in the future!  Till then, come in and see these pieces - jump off into an adventure with us - we've got some great ideas for larger pieces as installations.

Wildflower Series
Ranuncula Series