Friday, February 25, 2011

Gourds: Nest Overflow

Nest Overflow; 2011; Dyed hardshell gourd, dyed toothpicks, silk, glass microbeads,Tamarisk branches, vines, pyrography, carved, assembled

Several years ago, I was visiting my friend, Robbin when she handed me this large gourd on her living room floor that was "over 50-years-old" or so she told me. She plopped in my arms and said, "Here. Do something with this." Well, Robbin, five years and one BFA later, here it is. I hope you like it. I doubt it's what you expected.
     This piece is a reflection on the material things or maybe non-material things that fill our lives and the near-to-bursting feeling it can create. The top is separated from the bottom like a hinged jaw. The toothpicks remind me of the baleen of a whale that takes in the thousands of krill to feed itself. The actual gourd is old and has split in some places as if it could not contain its insides. I expanded on that idea and it made me think about the lure of material goods and wealth we acquire over our lifetimes, the material "stuff" we fill our homes with in order to add value to ourselves. In some way, this piece could be seen as a celebration of good fortune but I think it should also make us question what really constitutes happiness and home, in the long run. How attached are we to our "stuff?" What do we give up to acquire material goods? How heavy a burden are our things? Do we compromise our decisions and our values in order to keep our things? All things to ponder, in my opinion.

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