Monday, 9 January 2017

Riveting Story Behind Striking Sculpture

Though Paige Bradley has a few “trademark” sculptures, the Internet came and fell in love with one particular one that’s causing people from all over the world to see her art for the very first time. It’s an incredibly beautiful sculpture of a naked woman with light bleeding out of her cracked body.
How did this piece, called Expansion, come about? The sculptor just shared with us her fascinating and inspiring story.

“I conceived of this piece when I first moved to Manhattan,” she says. “I was a bit startled by the power of the curators and the critics and how they all had an anti-figure slant on what they deemed show-worthy. So many of these people felt like everything figurative had already been done, and real art was about being a ‘Visionary’ rather than just showing ability, accuracy or general talent. Thus, the figure had generally disappeared from galleries, museums, important collections, art fairs and other shows. The few of us that were left, had no place to exhibit and our voice was not being heard. Many figurative sculptors started teaching, as though that was all they could do.

“If I wanted to stay in the fine art field, I knew I had to join my contemporaries and make ‘contemporary’ art. I knew that it was time to let go of all the finely-tuned skills I had acquired over the years, and just trust in the process of making art. The art world was telling me I had to break down my foundation, let my walls crumble, expose myself completely, and from there I will find the true essence of what I needed to say.

“So, literally, I took a perfectly good wax sculpture – a piece I had sculpted with precision over several months – an image of a woman meditating in the lotus position, and just dropped it on the floor. I destroyed what I made. I was letting it all go. It was scary. It shattered into so many pieces. My first feeling was, ‘What have I done!?!’ Then, I trusted it would all come together like I envisioned.

“We cast all the pieces in bronze and assembled the pieces so they floated apart from one another. Then I brought in a lighting specialist and we built a crazy lighting system to make it glow from within. It turned out even better than I thought. And the best is that the image of Expansion means so much to so many who see it. I get letters every day! I feel like I really did my job successfully!”

In addition to her story, Bradley also shared with us some never-before-seen photos of the sculpture at different angles. Source - HERE

Love and light,

The Healing Property of Tears

7 Good Reasons to Cry
New York Times reporter Benedict Carey referred to tears in a piece as “emotional perspiration.” In his intriguing article, “The Miracle of Tears”, author Jerry Bergman writes: “Tears are just one of many miracles which work so well that we taken them for granted every day.” Here, then, are seven ways tears and the phenomenon we call “crying” heal us physiologically, psychologically, and spiritually.

1. Tears help us see.
2. Tears kill bacteria.
3. Tears remove toxins.
4. Crying can elevate mood.
5. Crying lowers stress.
6. Tears build community.
7. Tears release feelings.
Read more, here
Men Don't Cry
Although crying is natural, some cultures still send messages that strong men don’t cry. But until recently, many cultures believed that tears were a sign of manliness. World history and literature are filled with male leaders who cried publicly. Tears meant that a man lived by a code of values and cared enough to show emotion when things went wrong. Medieval warriors and Japanese samurai cried during times of epic tragedy. In Western culture, a man’s capacity to cry indicated his honesty and integrity. Abraham Lincoln used strategic tears during his speeches, and modern presidents have followed suit. Despite all this, until recently, men shedding tears have been viewed as less than masculine.
After decades of berating men for their tears, culture seems to be returning to the idea that crying is a male strength. A recent Penn State study found that participants considered a man’s tears to be a sign of honesty while a woman’s tears showed emotional weakness. In both sexes, a delicate misting of the eye was more acceptable than crying.
Why do you feel better after you cry?
According to the Minnesota study, crying can help to wash chemicals linked to stress out of our body, one of the reasons we feel much better after a good cry. Higher levels of adrenocorticotrophic (ACTH) have been found in emotional tears (compared to reflex tears).

Lachrymatory ~ Tear Bottle
In ancient Persia, when a sultan returned from battle, he checked his wives’ tear catchers to see who among them had wept in his absence and missed him the most.

In the Old Testament of the Bible, in Psalm 56.8, as David prays to God, he is referenced to say “Thou tellest my wanderings, put thou my tears in Thy bottle; are they not in Thy Book”.

Tear Catchers were commonly used during Ancient Roman times, with mourners filling glass bottles with their tears, and placing them in tombs as a symbol of their respect for the deceased. It was also used to show remorse, guilt, love and grief. The women cried during the procession, and the more tears collected in tear bottles meant the deceased was more important. The bottles used during the Roman era were lavishly decorated and measured up to four inches in height.
Tear bottles reappeared during the Victorian period of the 19th century when those mourning the loss of loved ones would collect their tears in bottles with special stoppers that allowed the tears to evaporate. When the tears had evaporated, the mourning period would end.
The tear bottle tradition has historically been a mourning tradition. Only in contemporary times have tears of joy and inspiration been captured. In current music and literature, tear bottles have once again been romanticized. References to the power of the tear bottle tradition occur in contemporary music videos, novels, and poetry. Contemporary tear bottles are created by glass artists around the world and a few successful manufacturers.
Today, lachrymatory bottles may also be called a tear bottle, tear catcher, tear vial, unguentaria, or unguentarium. There are also several less common spellings for lachrymatory, including lachrimatory. Source - HERE
Love and light,

Monday, 26 December 2016

A wonderful artist

Love and light,

The most romantic flower gardens in the world...

Husband plants thousands of pink blooms so people would come to see them and spend time with his blind wife so she didn't feel lonely. Toshiyuki Kuroki and his wife Yasuko had been married for 30 years when she began to have trouble with her sight. Within a week Mrs Kuroki, from Miyazaki Prefecture, had gone blind, after suffering complications from her diabetes. Mr Kuroki, a dairy farmer, had to watch on helplessly as his wife became depressed and withdrawn from the world. But he struck on the idea of creating a garden so beautiful that people would come to visit it and keep her company.

A husband in Japan has spent a decade creating a landscape of pink blooms to cheer up his wife after she went blind. Toshiyuki Kuroki and his wife Yasuko, from Miyazaki Prefecture, had been married for 30 years when Mrs Kuroki began having problems with her sight. Within a week, she had gone blind, suffering from complications relating to her diabetes. To the pair of dairy farmers, who had woken early every morning to look after their herd of 60 cows, her loss of sight was devastating.
They had led a difficult but rewarding life, also raising their two children, and had planned to celebrate their coming retirement with a massive tour around their country.
Mr and Mrs Kuroki were heartbroken that all their plans now seemed impossible. Mrs Kuroki shut herself away from the world and Mr Kuroki was forced to watch on, helpless, as his wife sunk into a deep depression.
That was until one day, Mr Kuroki noticed passersby admiring their small garden, which was filled with bright pink Shibazakura flowers, also known as moss phlox.

Shibazakura is a flower that grows thickly, covering the ground like a lawn. The shape of its pretty flower petals looks like that of sakura (cherry blossoms) and it comes in a variety of colors including different shades of pink, white, and light purple, with some petals having striped patterns.

He thought that if he planted more blooms, more people would come to see them and would help to keep his lonely wife company.
And so he quit his dairy farm and started work on creating a carpet of the pink flowers, surrounding their house and creating a striking and beautiful landscape.
He spent two years creating the foundation for the garden, reported RocketNews24, chopping down trees and caring for the fledgeling plants.
Now, more than a decade after the first seeds were planted, the garden in Shintomi Town is open to the public and attracts more than 7,000 visitors every year.
Throughout March and April, when the flowers are in full bloom, Mrs Kuroki has countless people to talk to and put a smile back on her face.
And visitors can also tour the old cow sheds, where they can hear more about the flowers and about the touching love story that brought the garden into being.
Source - HERE
The Shibazakura Festival is one of the most unique and colourful festivals on the Hokkaido flower calendar. Winding paths lead you across a surreal pink and purple hillside overlooking Takinoue town. Every year from early May to early June, Takinoue Park is covered with a carpet of Shibazakura which started from the equivalent of a single tangerine box filled with seedlings. These flowers have spread and grown every year and now cover an area of 100,000 square meters.
Image Source HERE
Shibazakura ~ Takinoue Park 
The park began in 1956 with a “mandarin orange box full” of moss phlox seeds. More and more flowers were planted each year until they filled a 100,000m2 area. The beautiful carpet of flowers covers the hillsides for around a month. As well as being a beautiful bright pink, they fill the park with a sweet scent, drawing you into a dreamlike world. 
May 1 - early June
The backside of the Daisetsuzan Mountain Range offers its pointy snow-covered peaks as a backdrop and tulips adorn the wide gently-sloped paths on your journey across the hill.
In the Ainu language, the Takinoue area is called Ponkamuikotan which roughly translates to "Village of the Small Gods." The name Takinoue, which literally means "Above the Waterfall," originates from the first Japanese settlers who founded the city upstream from a waterfall.
Hokkaido Ainu is the sole survivor of the Ainu languages. It is spoken by members of the Ainu ethnic group on the northern Japanese island of Hokkaido. Ainu has no generally accepted genealogical relationship to any other language family.
How beautiful...This Ponkamuikotan reminds me of Calageata in which (first draft of book) Bea travelled through a waterfall to visit. In this special place, purple flowers are abundant and it is the home of ethereal beings called the Sindria.  
Moss Garden, Saiho-Ji Temple [Kyoto, Japan] ~ Infrared photography
An interesting theory ~ (used inspiration for book - Calageata and Well of Souls)
Purple Earth hypothesis is an astrobiological hypothesis that life forms of early Earth were retinal-based rather than chlorophyll-based thus making Earth appear purple rather than green. An example of a retinal-based organism today is the photosynthetic microbes called halobacteria.
 Early Earth
Furano City, just south of Zerubu Hill above, is where tourists go to get their lavender fix. Even though the lavender blooming season is relatively short—just July and August—this city is very popular that there are more than one million visitors a year. This violet garden spreads out in every direction. Aside from lavenders, there are also cosmos and dahlia.
Flower Soul
Love and light,

Saturday, 24 December 2016