Posted in mixed media on February 6, 2010|
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It has been said that it is not a matter of what you have, but what you do with what you have. This is an important lesson for us all in these crucial times. Often, things that would otherwise be placed in the “throw-away” pile are better with a coat of paint, or given to someone in need. I am always amazed by the creative resourcefulness I witness in and among people plagued by poverty. People with less money and resource manage to make not so much waste. I still have so much to learn in this capacity.
When I am in the states, I love to thrift hunt. Sometimes just for inspiration. Sometimes, I find amazing furniture, frames and other items to incorporate into this artistic life. Ironically, Jamaica is without such establishments. My theory is that folks use up everything to the very last drop, through generations, onto neighbors etc. Although I miss the variety and cost effectiveness of such thrift shop finds I have discovered that when I keep my eyes open I am blessed with sightings of items headed for the “throw-away” pile. Occasionally, I come across furniture and/or objects that have great artistic potential. Most of the time if I ask I receive. This sighting-asking is almost always rewarding. I have found the same to be true of taking pictures here in Jamaica. Almost always, folks oblige, whether I request a photograph of their home or their face!
I am fascinated with zinc and board houses. The island is filled with them and though these materials are cheaper alternatives to concrete and steel, they can be so beautiful. There is just something about the humble simplicity of such structures. They are “piece-nd” together with materials that one has to build with and a whole heap of love. The reality of not having often gives way to real beauty. I have found this to be true of Jamaica and so many of the Jamaicans that I know.
This is a mixed media work that I created from a photograph I took years ago in Jamaica. I made it for a girlfriend for her housewarming. She purchased a beautiful piece of land and immediately moved into the small board house structure seated at the top of the hill. Humble yes. But from this structure she has designed and is in the process of developing her own paradise! Another shining example that life truly is about what you do with what you have…
Mek your home your haven, no matter how humble. Plant flowers and fruit and mek them grow…
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