Meditations were born through the continued study and exploration of various natural and historic elements. While the primary source of inspiration was New York and its myriad of sidewalks, intricately stenciled with delicate outlines of cracks, one can easily recognize river meanders as seen from above. It seems nature is determined to draw its own shapes on own as well as man – made surfaces. It’s as if those lines are already there and she simply molds the surface to imprint her lines upon it.
This series is also largely influenced by the early Islamic art and architecture. Many artifacts from Iraq and the 10th century Samarkand, Uzbekistan discovered at the beginning of the 20th century bear sparse design elements, often a single line of text running across the diameter of a plate or a commemorative structure. An ancient Zoroastrian tomb of Gonbar-I Qabus is a perfect example of the above-mentioned architectural design traditions during the Seljuk period in the Middle East.
The desire to combine such seemingly distant influences prompted the initial conceptual investigation into the possibilities of the pictorial instruments of the series. Austerity, so uncharacteristic of most of my other work, is essential to Meditations. Compositional balance and equilibrium of each drawing are achieved through careful study of the surface, upon which the ink is applied: its texture, shape, size, proportions and a determination of the intensity and rhythm of each line that appears within the bounds of each piece.
The series is also partially inspired by an unforgettable exhibition of works by Leon Ferrari and Mira Schendel I saw at the Museum of Modern Art, in New York (MoMA) some years back. In fact the initial push to work with a line as the principal visual element was first recognized during the exhibition. Ferrari’s seemingly random, elongated and pooled ink clots, not unlike stretched shadows of ballerinas were nothing less than a revelation. A whole new dimension of possibility was suddenly revealed. The choice of ink on paper is also Ferrari’s influence. The simplicity of these two basic elements was crucial to the overall look of the series.
Click HERE to see the Meditations Series.