Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Wednesday words: Why LiveandDyeColor?

I hated high school. I was bored and unmotivated, socially awkward, embarrassed by everything. Fairly normal, I guess. The one high point was art class. My teacher was a young woman with opinions about everything, and a huge passion for life. She found everything interesting, and posted fascinating tidbits around the class. She was a huge stimulus for me to go on to university, and I will always be grateful for that. Those 4 years were a game changer for me. I developed new skills, and new ways to articulate what I was feeling. I found out that there are so very many lenses to view the world through. I met the love of my life. I learned to stand on my own two feet. But I have got seriously off topic!

Unfortunately, the focus of art in South Africa in the 1970s was strictly limited to painting and drawing. One of the things in the supply closet, though, was a small group of printer's inks. They were translucent, the colors were rich and glowing, and they spoke to my soul. Not that I did anything fabulous with them, you understand, but when I met dye, I knew that those printer inks had been my preparation for a new love affair with color which runs and drips and oozes and schmoozes with other colors.

The other way in which high school art class set my life's course was art history. I found it so fascinating to see the ways in which the technology, world view etc. of a period were interpreted and reflected through its art. Back then the images under discussion were projected through a rickety slide projector. We looked at many famous paintings, but it was when we saw a Klee painting of colored squares that my world imploded. I have often looked for the painting since, to see if it would have the same impact, but I think that the projected image had a translucence that the painted image probably does not. In any case, at that moment, all of 17 years old, I knew I had found my passion, and that it was color!

The name LiveandDyeColor is therefore a natural expression of my passion for color and for the fluidity and translucence of colors obtained through dyeing.

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