It’s a big time for art. This morning as I was walking into the school, a parent stopped me and remarked how impressed she is with the quality of art in our summer program. I would have to agree. Each week, as the theme changes, it’s hard to imagine that it can get any better and then it does. It’s inspiring and humbling to see children making such beautiful works of art. And gratifying to be surrounded by teachers who hold art in high regard.
I’ve had my own art immersion going on as well. On Sunday afternoon I had an art opening at Desert Song Healing Arts Center (http://www.desertsongyoga.com). The theme was “A Way Through: art as a path for healing.” In addition to the exhibition of my work, I talked for awhile about the role of art as a healing practice as I recovered from two different cancer diagnoses in 2011 and 2012. I shared my cancer art journal and reflected on the interplay between my art’s evolution and my personal journey. Complimenting my contribution to the day was an extraordinary musical offering by local musicians Jane Hilton (http://www.waywardfiddler.com/bio/bio.htm) and Darin Mahoney (http://www.darinmahoney.net). Over 100 people attended the event that ended up being a celebration of the resilience of the human spirit through art and music.
As I looked out into the crowd, I was appreciative of the various communities of which I am a part. Each of those communities—family, friends, the yoga studio, and Awakening Seed—was well represented. One of the most meaningful guests was Anne Sager, the lively spirit, an artist herself, who co-founded the Seed with me in 1977. It made me smile to see some of our current teachers in attendance light up when I mentioned Annie was there and had driven up from Patagonia, Arizona, just for the event. The support was overwhelming and I’m still floating in the afterglow.
As I talked about my relationship with art and healing, I quoted the singer-songwriter Rosanne Cash (http://www.onbeing.org/program/rosanne-cash-time-traveler/1048), who talks about her own artistic process: “I want so much to touch those things in my life and in my work, and I just keep looking for the veil to be lifted even in a fraction of a moment, you know, I’m always looking for that.” Sunday’s event felt like a lifting of the veil, with a glimpse into a deeper part of myself. As I returned to the Seed this week, I thought how fortunate we all are to have these summer weeks devoted to art. If we can help each child even in a small way catch a similar glimpse of his/her potential as an artist and human being, then it will be a success, above and beyond all the beautiful works hanging in the hallways.