I've been away on a road-trip with my four little girls and my mom. We did a two day drive to my grandparents' farm. It's one of my very favorite places, ever. While I have grown up in many different houses, my grandparent's home has always been in the same place.

A place of consistency, beauty and awesome velvet flocked wallpaper. I have made the pilgrimage for almost 15 years. When I started having children I would wonder each year if I would be able to make the trip as my little bundles of joy introduced more obstacles and even more luggage. And every year my husband would shake his head at me and say, of course you can. He understands how important my grandparents and that place is to me. It is sacred ground.

Over the years I have tried to take pictures and capture the magic and memories of the visits from my childhood and the recent ones as well. I take time to just lay down on the soft burnt orange shag carpeting in the formal living room and just breathe in the place. I run my hands over the walls and feel the textures of wallpaper that changes with each room. I creep down the steep stairs to the basement and take a deep breath of the distinct smell its had for as long as I can remember.

I walk down the road and observe the fields and fields of wheat, beets, hay and potatoes. Then there are the bugs. Lake bugs to be specific. They look similar to mosquitoes but don't bite. They are content to just buzz around in swarms and generally annoy you. Over the years I have grown used to them. They are still annoying but I won't let them get in the way of my walks anymore. I sit on the swings my grandpa built when I was a child and now my children enjoy them. These are just a few of the things I think of.

When I am no longer able to visit the farm, when time and new ownership takes it away from me I will have my memories and my pictures. I will have the memories of my grandparents, my children and my mom. I will forever be in tune to sights and smells that I will come across that will conjure up the memories of my sacred place. I am not looking forward to that day but I am content with putting in the work and making the trek each year so I can add to my storage of experiences and memories.

Those feelings of belonging, sacredness and whimsy I have when I am there are exactly what I try to infuse into my artwork. To evoke memories, to breathe in and internalize a sacred place and to tell stories full of beauty, consistency and awesome velvet flocked wallpaper. As always, there are times that I just don't think I have the time or energy to create. Then my husband shakes his head at me and says, of course you can.

1 comment:

  1. You're amazing and thoughtful, Kirsten. What lovely memories.