Deepening my connection to the spirit of a place is the foundation of my art, with colour as a primary interest. Most of my work is abstract, sometimes with reference to a particular tree or plant in my forest garden, in whatever media – acrylics, cold wax and oils, printmaking – suit the subject. I also draw inspiration from my inner world and from something – an emotion, feeling or experience – that seems to want to be expressed through me.
Major influences are the Indigenous cultures – in Siberia, Mongolia, India, Southeast Asia, northern North America – in which I’ve lived and worked as an anthropologist and ethnobotanist. Here, life and art are one and the same. Especially important is the subtle connection to the natural world and the spirit realm.
With students, I teach the art of ‘not looking’ to find a subject of study, to take them to places beyond thought and into the heart. They interweave their subject with their own experience of it and so connect with the spirit of a place, plant, event or person at a deeper level than the everyday.
Title: Arbutus, Acrylics, 2’ X 4’
Ways of Knowing by Marilyn Walker