Memory Landscape #49
Mary Reardon
Acrylic on Canvas
H 20in x W 24in
While attending the Nova Scotia College of Art and Design I became intrigued with the intangible process of memory and have tried, through my art, to give form to the process of remembering or forgetting - the essence of who we are. In order to effect this description, I have turned to one of the traditions of the still life - the use of objects as symbols. The bird has been used throughout the history of the visual arts to represent the human soul. Following in this tradition, I use the feather to represent the human soul or, in psychological terms, our memories. The containers, nests, and branches I have depicted are meant to represent the physical mind and how it functions as it holds, or fails to hold, those memories. The finished composition is intended to be a metaphor for how the mind looks at the moment when something is remembered or forgotten. Skies and clouds, in more recent paintings, create a suggestion of a particular state of mind for me. The "landscape" in some works is sometimes simply alluded to with the use of an object such as a twig or a leafing branch. The reflection of objects in the surface of other objects speaks to the literal act of remembering (or reflecting) as well as introducing another level to the symbolism of the objects.