August 21, 2010

The Secret Garden

"My Grandmother's Hollyhocks"
10 x 10, oil on canvas
FCP (ageless and timeless, of course!)

"The Pretty Pink Tulip"
8 x 8, acrylic on canvas
ALP (age 5)
"The Red Rose"
8 x 8, acrylic on canvas
DBA (age 8)
The above paintings are part of a current exhibit accompanying the local production of Frances Hodgson Burnett's "The Secret Garden". The transformational and restorative power of the garden that the book's character Mary discovers, reminds me of how my Dad described his own childhood memories. In addition to vegetable and flower gardens, he was enthralled by the fragrant fruit orchards, with their carpets of spring blossoms that created a magic space for adventure, and afforded him a lifelong love of nature and gardening. Taking time to honor that rich connection to our world is a gift that we too can pass along to the next generation as they seek their own paths to imagination and magic. Special thanks to my young artist collaborators for allowing me to play along!

"The Secret Garden was what Mary called it when she was thinking of it. She liked the name, and she liked still more the feeling that when its beautiful old walls shut her in no one knew where she was. It seemed almost like being shut out of the world in some fairy place. The few books she had read and liked had been fairy-story books, and she had read of secret gardens in some of the stories. Sometimes people went to sleep in them for a hundred years, which she had thought must be rather stupid. She had no intention of going to sleep, and, in fact, she was becoming wider awake every day which passed..." Frances Hodgson Burnett