Sunday was the last day of the Magic City Art Connection. It's a great three-day art/craft show in Linn Park in downtown Birmingham with lots of great artists, live music, yummy food, and activities for the young folk. I have to get my art fix every now and then to stay creatively grounded.
It was a warm, sunny day and lots of folks were out to see what was there to see. Last time I attended this show I bought at $12 pin made out of a bottle cap, some glitter, and a bit of a vintage Christmas card.
I did not go intending to make any real purchase, much less a significant purchase.
But when a piece of art speaks to you, you'd better listen or you could regret it for a long time. I have finally let go of a painting I fell in love with twelve years ago and couldn't really afford. But that didn't keep me from remembering it to this day and wishing for a long time that I had sacrificed a few things to buy it.
And then I encountered this work by Joseph Bradley of Greenville, South Carolina. He had some lovely little birds that were much more within a reasonable person's budget. But I immediately fell for this face.
It's 24" x 24" mixed media on board with silver leaf. I went back to look at it a second time before leaving the park without it. Fortunately I don't live that far, so once I got home I whipped out a tape measure looking for a potential spot to hang it. I even snapped a picture from the artist's website and carried it around the house on my camera holding it up to audition different walls.
I went outside to clear my head by tidying up the yard. Was this another one of those paintings that I dare not pass on lest I regret it? But it was a budget bender and could I really justify it? I spoke to a neighbor walking her dog and even told her about it. She said "I haven't even seen it and I vote yes!" So I went back to get it.
Beauty feeds our souls. It is around us everywhere every day. We just don't see most of it. No wonder our souls are so parched. There is a massive veil of old pink roses cascading over the edge of a railroad support that I see on my way to work these days. I wonder every time I pass it if anyone else sees it.
The artist and his wife were excited to see me return and to know the young fella would have a good home. Apparently he had received a lot of attention throughout the day. I showed them the picture of Maisy and how much her funny face matched his. And I told them about Daddy having been gone since October and how the expression also reminded me of a picture of him from a Christmas years ago. I closed his checking account this week. I was caught off guard at the bank by the finality of that act and by the wave of emotion that swept past me during such a routine business transaction. There were enough funds left to cover this purchase.
Something about the satisfied expression on this little fox tells me that he has taken time to smell the roses (or peonies in this case.) It says that he has found beauty in hidden and unexpected places. And now he lives at my house so he can remind me to look for it, too.