Perhaps it's because I've entered that phase of life that some might call 'elderly', but which I prefer to describe as 'mature'; but I find myself increasingly captivated by the beauty of decay. Rust, weathered timber, distressed surfaces - these intrigue me. Their beauty owes nothing to fashion or style, but is the product of the ravages of time, and of endurance.
I see the resonances in my own life, in which my body changes in ways I could not have envisaged. Texture and form alter slowly but surely, and I observe these phenomena with interest, without judgement, and with gratitude for the gift of life. Who is that woman in the mirror, and when did wrinkles lend her face such character?
Of course, I still find beauty in the new - the fresh green leaves of Spring, and the riotous colours of summer flowering - but the shabby hues and complex textures of decay possess their own rich aesthetic.
As always, my art is filled with contradictions, and in this it reflects all of life. My paintings glow with vibrant colours, and the covers of my books are deep and intense. But my pottery, my weaving, and now, my latest foray into collage, see me working with found objects, with handmade paper and broken shells.
I walk the beach, marveling at the careless beauty of stranded seaweed and weathered stones and the profligate hand of the tides.
Rutile inscribes Japanese characters in the ochre sand, and crabs leave dragon images outside their burrows.
In my garden, bark falls from the melaleuca trees, like thick pages from the book of Time.
It's an exciting time of exploration and possibility.
They say that the latter years are a time in which we review our lives and endeavour to make sense of it all. I feel that I am doing this through the various art forms I embrace; and it's no coincidence that my refurbished art studio has provided the ideal space for this process.
I hope that you will be my companions on this journey of discovery, and find as much joy in the works I produce, as I find in their creation.