Pieces No. 11, paper collage, 2022
where are you going
the rest of your life
we’ve only just begun
this waltz of upholstered shadows
the moon, leaning out its window
calling in the clarinets, horses
tearing ourselves from the doorframes
making fools of these
We spend too much time looking outside when we should be looking within. I like the female nude as a metaphor, or vehicle, for exploring this process because I think the search for soul, the search within, is—for women, anyway—intimately tied to our sexuality, the ways in which we experience ourselves as women. These things cannot be taken apart.
When Clarissa Pinkola Estés suggests that, in some sense, the inner wild woman lives in our ovarios, she is right. How I experience the world—whether or not I feel the world deeply, intuitively, to be an extension of self, feel myself open to the world, is as corporeal as it is spiritual. These impulses—to create, nurture, be open, receptive—are all rooted in the body. Are all, in some sense, sexual, erotic impulses. And the more I use them in positive, life-affirming ways, the more the world opens up to me, feels like an extension of self.
Another reason I like using the female nude: to explore the otherwise ineffable aspects of this experience, of the eroticism of everyday life, the union of self and world.
I now realize I am about to write something I’ve written before:
Eroticism is an amorous perspective. It is a way of looking at and interacting with the natural world that is characterized by a deep fondness and a reverence for life. It can also be a sensory encounter that feels like an encounter, a feeling of intense closeness, or a desire to reach out and pierce the veil of reality, to clutch it, to feel it bristle beneath your fingertips. It is to feel that much alive and to feel just as powerfully connected to the life that surrounds you. Indeed, if there is a series of copulations that mark the erotic encounter, then they occur among the senses, or between the senses and reality (or even the imaginary), not between two bodies.
Prints for the artwork above are available in my Etsy shop.
While I am still in the process of adding the “Pieces” collages to my shop, I have updated the gallery, for anyone who would like to view the full collection.