All original images and text are copyright 2008-2018 Liz Sweibel

Monday, March 21, 2011

It has been a long while since I wrote, though I've been working in the studio as steadily as life allows.  On February 25, news of a death came suddenly and opened an enormous, painful void that just knocked me down.  He was a parental figure, a man who taught me about unconditional love and the nature of family and generosity.  He made things possible for me - both tangible and dynamic - and was a blessing in my life.  The loss undid me.  For most of my adulthood I identified myself by my losses, as if that sum were all I added up to, because that's all I felt.  I don't live that way any more, thankfully, but this loss activated the old ones.  It also shone a light on a current situation, and I was reeling.  I felt invisible, and turned fully inside.  Only when I allowed myself to reach for the resources that could help did it start to turn, and now, almost a month later, I'm vertical.  Changed and sad, but vertical.

I've continued with the thread-and-vellum drawings, working from photos.  The 19 x 25" format was a good move.  At first I kept doing what I was doing in the 9 x 12" format: just building the fragments in a much vaster space.  But something felt off, though ... incomplete.  It was only this weekend that their lack of tension, or punch, became clear to me.  They are inert; they don't get anywhere.  So now I can return to the several I have and view them as starts.  Of course, all of this perfectly parallels my return to verticality.