Monday, October 6, 2014

The Stillness Project

When I read the phrase, “Receive my Peace” in Susan Young’s daily devotional Jesus Calling I knew I had the bones of a nice inspirational image for the Facebook.

In the throes of my new grid based artworks, the idea had morphed into arrays of individual panels.  I’d just completed a couple dozen small white boxes.  Moving the piles around had gotten interesting as I began stacking them artfully.  I’d taken 62 photos as each box added to the stack made for a new arrangement.

There would be plenty to choose from to illustrate the “Receive My Peace” concept.

Surprisingly, this was not the case.  Looking with the guiding principle of “Peace” I found these images—every one of them—very busy.  

This was disturbing.  I thought that these little white boxes were undeniably quiet works.  No.

For a guy who uses “Out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks,” (Matthew 12:34) in his artist’s statement, I had some thinking to do.
Cube Drawing,  Graphite and Acrylic on Prepared Paper  1993  ©   James Thatcher

What was peace and how is it expressed?

Layout Template for "Discovering the Broken Obelisk" , Artist's Book, The Art Library, Brooklyn, NY
The concept of “stillness” came forward:  the square is a practical expression of equilibrium and balance because it is equal on all sides.  It can be an effective symbol of stillness.  

Surface quality was something to consider as well.  Is my signature heavy texture indicative of peace?  Not so much…

Then, in a conversation with a friend about “The Stillness Project” the idea of the color of peace came up.  What is the color of peace?  
Yves Klein regarding the color "Blue"     photo credit Harry Shunk

Perhaps it’s not one color but a range with peaceful application? 

This is the path I am choosing at the moment.  

Peace is alert with conscious choices occurring.  It isn’t sleep, right?  It’s a state of being.  Going back to the original idea, we are to “Receive His Peace”.  Being in the world, but not of the world; it is a gift from The Prince of Peace which we either accept or reject.  


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