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air, you silken surround, 60x48", unframed

air, you silken surround, 60x48", unframed

inspired by these words from Rilke

Some thoughts on the element of nature - AIR - that has been the cornerstone of my art all these years.  I consider air as cloud, fog, mist, atmosphere, wind on water, breath and these forms are all rich with feeling and paradox.  These visible-invisible, ephemeral-material things-not things evoke transcendence and inwardness, mobility and change, but also and most relevant for my work, mood.  Atmosphere is a luminous opacity, fog a barometer of feeling, cloud an organ of sentiment.  Air envelops us, yet remains untouchable.  It makes itself known to us in the most incredible ways when mixed with water and light. It is life. And poetry, it provides a metaphorical vocabulary for my explorations of this atmospheric element of nature.  It is the poetry that gives this element that is somewhat resistant to understanding a gateway to memory and feeling.

It seems
our own impermanence is concealed from us.
The trees stand firm, the houses we live in
are still there. We alone
flow past it all, an exchange of air.

Everything conspires to silence us,
partly with shame,
partly with unspeakable hope.

Rainer Rilke, From the Second Duino Elegy


oil on canvas

framed in clear maple floater frame

Sharon Kingston, 2024


Breath, you invisible poem!
Pure, continuous exchange
with all that is, flow and counterflow
where rhythmically I come to be.

Each time a wave that occurs just once
in a sea I discover I am.
You, innermost of oceans,
you, infinitude of space.

How many far places were once
within me. Some winds
are like my own child.

When I breathe them now, do they know me again?
Air, you silken surround,
completion and seed of my words. 

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