The Geography of Home and My Obsession With the Notion of Place

Presently reading, Geography of Home: writings on where we live by Akiko Busch and have always had quite a thing for thinking about space/place/where I live.  At this very moment, I am rearranging/sorting/cleaning out the studio.  The weather can only be described as  ‘autumn’ here in Calgary, so this is the perfect time!  I found this photo reference in a box in the studio…a photo of Angel Glacier up Edith Cavell-way back in 2004.  Now, there’s a place that, even as I think about it, gives me chills.  It is such a mystical experience to do the alpine hike and to hear huge chunks of the glacier crash down into the milky green water below.

At the same time as thinking about this place, I move my painting of Angel Glacier onto my back deck, as I sort and stack.  There it is leaning against the bench, beside a snow shovel.  It is an interesting thing how paintings attempt to give some impression of PLACE, but can only succeed to a point.  Landscape paintings, I think, are about inheritance and about leaving future generations with some sense of how beautiful our world is/was.  At least, this was something really on my mind as I approached landscape painting.  Who knows.  I first thought about this when the protagonist, Morag, of Margaret Laurence’s The Diviners explained to her metis daughter, Piquette, what a buffalo was.  It’s interesting, but from one generation to the next, something is lost.  I think artists of all kinds, try to capture a bit of the sense of ‘the dance’ once the audience goes home.  I love typewriters and old records for just this reason.  They remind me of another place, as much as another time.