In 1995 I became fascinated by the images in a bridal magazine. Suddenly I needed to paint brides, even though my interest seemed odd. A divorcee, there were no wedding plans. I was forty-five and would retreat into a rather monkish period of my life after this work was complete.
The bride paintings seemed to prefigure this move. The brides I painted then were rather grimy looking. They stood in low light, often in swamps. They were alone. Through contemplation of this imagery I came to understand that I was indeed married to something already.
Over the next two decades, my sense of being wedded to a way of life became comfortable and clear.
When this fascination with the bride archetype returned, however, I was baffled again. My practice was seasoned by this time and I did not question the inspiration, but knew to sit quietly with the paintings as they were being created and let them speak to me. This time the images seemed beyond the personal.
The animal companions in these paintings I now recognize as aspects of personhood that make me whole. They are absent from the pages of bridal magazines, and left out of popular ideas about femininity and womanhood as well.
I humbly dedicate these paintings to Maidenhood, a gift from the Crone.