“The Dancers and the Rooster”
“2020 and Covid-19”
“The Dancers” Woven Autumn 2020 97 x 64cms
“The Rooster” Woven Winter 2021 97 x 64cms
Read More About The Dancers and the Rooster” “2020 and Covid-19”
The year 2020 and the pandemic of the Covid-19 virus has resulted in great and fundamental change to everyone on planet Earth. Unsure where the virus resides and in whom, and as I write there is no vaccine which makes us all feel extremely vulnerable and under threat. These are negative thoughts yet are entirely understandable. It has prompted people to think, to assess and to consider what life is all about. What is of real importance and what is not. As the months proceed and we observe the changing seasons time has become a barometer.
I am reminded of the words of A. L. Tennyson:
“As on this whirligig of time,
We circle with the seasons.”
Past time and a way of life has long gone for now we must all adapt and change to a new reality. The present is all about survival and we turn to the past to aid the re-creation of a “new normal”. Those things which are stable and ever present give comfort, the family, our beliefs and philosophies, our established routines and practices all give strength for us to carry on and regenerate, to restart and survive. Change itself creates difficulties and tensions for it is not easy to accomplish. To achieve this state of mind we need energy and vigour to construct our futures. For the past creates the present the future requires both dynamism and vitality.
“Days begin and end in the dead of night. They are not shaped long, in the manner of things which leads to ends – arrow, road, man’s life on earth. They are shaped round, in the manner of things eternal and stable – Sun, Moon Earth and God”
Civilisation tries to persuade us we are moving towards a distant goal. We have forgotten that our only goal is to live and to live each and every day and if we live each and every day, our goal is achieved. All civilized people see the day beginning at dawn or a little after or a long time after or whatever time their work begins. This they lengthen according to their work, during what they call “all day long”; and end it when they close their eyes.
“It is they who say the days are long,
on the contrary,
the days are round.”
Jean Giono – “Rondeur des Jours” 1943
It is with this background that these two tapestries have been designed and woven. I began during those early days when the pandemic dominated every passing hour. My thinking leading me to seek the positive, to look forward and to find hope and optimism. Despair and despondency have no part to play. I seek only to aid the recreation of the “new normal”, with anticipation and confidence, ambition and a desire to succeed. Much of the imagery, forms and shapes hark back to previous work and the associated exploration of colour and textures. Following a period of research and reflection ideas began to be identified, drawings and water colour paintings followed. The results of this research and reflection can be viewed in this pair of woven tapestries.
My starting point was the fundamental importance to life on Earth of the role played by the Sun and moon. With the Earth rotating and circling the Sun, and the Moon wandering as a witness alone and for ever changing its shape and position, these two partners conjoin to celebrate our scene. Each combining and contributing, they come together in a sense of celebration and elation. The Moon’s solitary nightly meanderings, against a darkened sky is complemented by the Sun’s energy and daily gift of light and brightness. It is our Earth which clothes the “Dancer” with its multitude of colour, texture and forms. These time cycles have been present for millennia. What joys and tragedies, events and disasters, what global vicissitudes and transformations have occurred and have been witnessed by the Sun and Moon?
Starting with the Sun and the Moon symbol combination, their graceful gyrations creates a metaphor for “dance partners” to emerge. Combined yet separate, as one, but two entities. They have come together to revel in a positive joyous celebration, a gambol in the heavens. The Sun at the central core creating a solid foundation, while the Moon and its forever changing shape and position is taking the lead. There is an intense and compelling sense of movement, of measured rhythm and poise, of vertical deportment and direction. Along with flowing landscape elements these combine in a celebration of life, of a new and unsullied day laying ahead. The unfathomable universe is the stage on which our duo will perform their gyrations, swirling, sways and frolics. All this against a background of dark deep space, of infinity and its unimaginable scale. Each are wearing the gaudy, the bright and colourful palettes relating to their individual character. Resplendent in showing off the many shades and facets of their individual existence. No music is to be heard, no drum beat to encourage and inspire. Seemingly oblivious to the viewer they are in their own intimate world, in their own time. Combined they rotate and revolve, pirouette and cavort, the Moon grateful for fulfilling her nightly wanderings and the Sun for initiating a new day. The past has gone, they are now in the present and looking towards the future. They are about to leave the darkness, the unknown, the uncertainty of Covid-19 and its associated fear to a time with light and positivity, for a fresh new day lies ahead.
What dawn sounds greet and welcome the weary duo?
What colours become visible after the darkness of night?
What of the hopes, aspirations and promises?
At the first light of day, if not before, the cry of nature, the “Rooster’s” solo awakes the slumbering landscape, ear disturbing and piercing yet welcoming. Another day is arriving and another future. The nocturnal silences amid the dark is now a witness to pending light. On the horizon beckons a possible Covid vaccine, new treatments and hope along with some optimism. Our soloist is integral to the Erath’s awakening to play a role in the first scene of the day and the coming dramas which lay before us all. This renewed beginning positions the individual on a pathway and with the eastern dawn light comes direction. The night demons are admonished and left far behind, but never forgotten for we now live in a different world. The dark unknown has been replaced with light, with knowledge and confidence and we can look ahead armed with positivity and direction. Decisions need to be confronted, at crossroads and junctions and at the many twists and turns as they occur. With travel and the passage of time movement and distance is achieved. Aspiration and ambition combine, personal goals and aims become attainable, hopes, dreams and optimistic thoughts now inhabit our minds.
Hark to the sounds of the “Rooster”, light is arriving after the darkness of night.
We must dance, move to the rhythms of our true self.
A fresh beginning, new and energising.
We must live life.