Friday, September 12, 2008

Charcoal Figures 2

Equilibrium (ii): Breathing is Balance
Charcoal on Paper

The title comes from two sources: an older piece I did in 2004 named Equilibrium (below), which depicted a woman half falling half flying through a crazy mass of marks and brush strokes. It was created during an unsettled time of my life when I was striving to find balance amidst chaos and transition. The best I could do at that time was steer into the skid, so to speak.

In this piece, by contrast I'm trying to evoke a sense of tentative balance by means of focus and discipline. The latter half of the title comes from a piece of advice my sage husband gave me when we were slacklining on the beach recently. Slacklining is something climbers often do on rest days. You stretch a length of 1" webbing between two trees, and attempt to walk/jump/turn/whatever on it. It's a bit like tightrope walking, with a lot more play in the line.

I've found that I can walk on the slackline much better this year, I think in part due to the yoga I did all winter. The discipline of breathing exercises really helps me to clear my mind - and if you're thinking about breathing, you're not thinking about falling. This has helped my climbing too, as you can imagine. So when Taylor said to me, "Breathing is balance..." it made so much sense to me, and the alliteration makes it easy for me to remember...or was it "balance is breathing"...? oh well, I think they're interchangeable anyway!

Equilibrium (2004)
Mixed Media on Paper