Monday, November 24, 2008

Dianna Lucas catches the spirit of the horizon

One of the revelations of the 2008 Poetry Scores Art Invitational, for me - when I got to actually see the show, as opposed to blog it - was Dianna Lucas' Spirit Catching.

Unfortunately, all I can show you, here, is all she could show me, before the show: a rectangular scan of what is actually a wide, horizontal print of a photograph. This image doesn't do the piece justice - it doesn't catch the spirit.

When I studied the actual print of the photograph at Hoffman LaChance - near the very beginning of the show, since the phrase "Spirit Catching" is very near the beginning of K. Curtis Lyle's poem, Nailed Seraphim, on which the show was based - I understood what we mean by a "horizontal" image. As in: the horizon.

That's what Dianna's photograph captures, to me: the spirit of horizon. Without a doubt, she shot the horizon on a day it had hovering above it a wild skyscape, complete with color coding - would all the white clouds line up to the left, and all the funky dark blue clouds line up to the right?; thank you - but it was that black bedrock of the horizon that I was feeling.

Maybe that's because I'm so very sure that, to catch the spirit, you have to be grounded.

For those who missed the show, let me share an important detail this scan doesn't impart: the character of the horizon. There is a more or less regularly jagged line of corn heads and tassels that forms the horizon. It's an horizon of cornstalks that also looks, at least to me, like an horizon of tipi tops. Actually, I was reminded of the sure, severe lines of American Indian ledger art - the way Indians took what they had been drawing on bison hides and drew it in notebooks when they were imprisoned or at school (= same thing, mostly).

Another detail for those of you who didn't get to talk to Dianna about the piece, as I was fortunate to do: she found this horizon standing on land owned by Wesley Fordyce, whom she knows through Jenna Bauer. So her feelings for Jenna (and Wesley; but mostly Jenna) are also all caught up in this act of spirit catching.

Here's something we learned at this year's invitational: people will pay more than $100 for a work of art at our bargain-basement art auctions, but typically not when the bidding starts above $100, and Dianna started her bidding at $102. Why am I ending a discussion of art and spirit with financial terms, with filthy lucre? Only to say that the piece remains in the collection of the artist, should anyone wish to see and hear the details I saw and heard (and, surely, other details).

If there is anything that distinguishes Dianna, it's her capacity to make people want to spend detailed time with her.


p.s. to those who saw the show but don't know her: she was our graceful emcee, one of her various duties as a Poetry Scores board member.

1 comment:

El said...

Graceful, indeed.