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July 16, 2019


I love your artwork, Beth, and the keen observation and poetic heart behind it.

Lovely essay and art, I know those views well. Your depictions of the summer atmosphere there resonate with this other, former lake resident.

...you may not be the same person, but your head remembers and relives those moments so eloquently and they are part of you and what you are Beth. This is just beautiful. I live this everyday as I live in a house that overlooks the farm where my mother grew up and lived in until her final days. There was not a day went by where she made sure she expressed her appreciation and gratefulness for the minutiae of the most organic and simple things of the central New York world. When I lived in Connecticut, she would randomly call me on the phone simply to tell me what a glorious day it was. Now, every day for me, every wildflower, every birdsong, every sunrise and sunset and those esoteric moments of the day that evoke memories make me wish I were an artist so I could try to capture those feelings on paper. Alas, that’s not my gift, but I continue to comment out loud, as I gaze at a miracle transpiring in my garden or breathing in that amazing morning air, even if no one is listening, just as I’m sure my mother did, on the simple beauties that surround me. What a gift my mother gave me. Are we not the luckiest children in the world.

What lovely paintings of the loveliest of spots.

I admire the clarity of your practice Beth. By this I mean the seeing, the artworks, the words, and your persisting and returning to where the deep feelings are no matter how complex and seemingly infathomable. That last word might point to your fascination with the waters edge?

The lake images have such a lyric calm... Lovely that you put that seamlessly into the work, even when you doubtless had a whole world of feelings inside you, visiting home.

(The legume-homage, though--those pea pods are definitely moving slightly!)

Thank you, Pascale.

Gerry, it's great to hear from you! The lake has changed some since we all lived there, but the views are fundamentally the same and still bring the same memories and feelings. I was happy to see that there is more natural vegetation in the water now than there was for a while, and plenty of fish in the shallows, but I haven't heard a report lately on the water quality.

Kate -- yes, it is! Thank you.

Anne, thanks so much for your kind words, and for your comment. I'm so glad to know this about your mother and you, and like you I'm grateful all the time for having had a mother who loved and appreciated the natural world so much and gave that to me. I hope once in a while you call your own children and tell them what a glorious day it is in Chenango County! And because you're an artist in a different medium, I'm sure your feelings get expressed in music -- it's just not as literal a step as from landscape to visual art.

Vivian, thanks for the linguistic note, since I never really thought about that! And thank you for encouraging my practice and persistence, in more ways than art and words.

Marly, you live on a lake yourself, so you know its moods and the ways that presence insinuates itself into so much more than art. But the constancy affects us too, even when we're not nearby all the time. Thanks for your comment.

These watercolours are gorgeous, Beth and so full of the atmosphere, the feeling of the place as well as observant and intuitive. You obviously have a deep connection to this environment and it comes through in crystalline fashion in these paintings.

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Who was Cassandra?

  • In the Iliad, she is described as the loveliest of the daughters of Priam (King of Troy), and gifted with prophecy. The god Apollo loved her, but she spurned him. As a punishment, he decreed that no one would ever believe her. So when she told her fellow Trojans that the Greeks were hiding inside the wooden horse...well, you know what happened.