“Decluttering”

Oil on Canvas, 40″ X 30″

When the mind is freed from garbage,

There is nothing left

But life.


 

 

“Demon Facing”

Oil on Canvas, 20″ X 24″

I look at you my trusty demons.
I fought you for so many years.
I’m giving up the useless fight,
You’re laying down your rusty arms.

 


 

“Grief Reimagined” (diptych)(commissioned)

Oil on Canvas, 20″ X 34″

“Grief” (bottom)
Oil on Canvas, 20″ X 24″

Under the mass of heavy thoughts,
Enveloped by the darkest mood,
My body’s being crushed.
I cannot move.

“Relief” (top)
Oil on Canvas, 20″ X 10″

I’ve seen the pain.
I’ve understood its meaning.
It’s time to fly away,
It’s time to disappear.

 

The story behind the commission:

A few months ago I was contacted by Christine Kortbein, the co-author of the upcoming book “Grief Reimagined: 50 Creative Strategies to Build Resilience”, together with Catherine Tyink. She asked me if I would be interested in creating an artwork to become a design for a book cover. I readily agreed. Christine explained what the book is all about and sent me a few sample stories from the book to inspire my creative process.
At first, the bottom part was created as an improvised scene, which symbolically depicts the phenomenon called “grief”. After seeing the progress of the improvised artwork, Christine thought that it will be a good idea to add a bird as a second part to symbolize the release from grief, and she asked me if that would be possible. That’s how the originally thought of as one-piece artwork became a diptych. The second (top) part was more of the design rather than an improvised scene. I wanted to make sure that the bird figure will work well with the bottom part of the diptych.

Book info: When confronted with loss, each of us benefits from engaging in meaningful activities and events that bring closure. This book provides novel strategies that readers can use to find meaning, process grief, and accept and build upon the memories that often accompany loss. Against the backdrop of photographs and artwork, this book presents 50 real-life stories to help readers work through loss – including examples that are often not recognized as sources of grief.

Purchase the book: christinekortbein.com (Available late September 2020)


Self-consciousness

Oil on Canvas, 20″ X 28″

Sitting on my shoulder,
Yapping all day long.
Annoying parakeet!


Safety

Oil on Canvas, 30″ X 30″

Wrapping arms
Around my head.
Feeling safe
In my own self.


Rebirth

Oil on Canvas, 24″ X 36″

 

Reborn?! Again?!
For crying out loud!
How many times more?

 


Laughter

Oil on Canvas, 24″ X 18″

 

I heard you jumping out of my throat.
Are you real?
Or just hiding something
I can’t quite see?

 


Molasses

Oil on Canvas, 24″ X 24″

Like molasses
This thicket of problems
Is enveloping me.
Making too much fuss,
I flap my arms and cuss.
At last I break free…
Only to meet my end.


The Details

Oil on Canvas, 20″ X 24″

Inspired by the expression:

“The devil’s in the details”


Sock Puppet

Oil on Canvas, 11″ X 14″

Am I this or am I that?


Dogs And Birds

Oil on Canvas, 11″ X 14″

Walking with dogs,
Thinking of birds.


Air Exchange

Oil on Canvas, 11″ X 14″

Sharing the space,
Tossing air
Forth and back.


“The Urge”

Oil on Canvas, 24″ X 30″

Drinking your beauty
From the cup of desire.
Melting in the flames
Of consuming fire.


“The Past”

(commissioned)

Oil on Canvas, 20″ X 30″

It wants to hold me down,
It doesn’t let me go.
It will never, I fear,
Leave me alone.


“The Giving Tree”

Oil on Canvas, 30″ X 30″

On a silver platter you hand me your life.
Like a hungry animal I gobble it up.
I’m big and strong now, I did grow up.
But when I look at you, I remember you not.


“The Observed”

Oil on Canvas, 11″ X 14″

Inspired by the statement “The observer is the observed!”