7:30 BELLS: “The Way Through”


“The Way Through” is a show by artist Joyce Gehl of haunting, pastoral dreamscapes—encaustic paintings. It's also the title of one of my favorite paintings in the show. Maples trees with soft red leaves and, between them, beckoning corridors of golden light.

I wish I could spend a solitary hour just dreaming into this painting. I could walk right into it and end up in some forgotten garden in my subconscious—somewhere unknown, but somewhere I'd definitely want to find myself. All of the paintings in the show, currently at the Patricia Rozvar Gallery in Seattle, are dreamscapes of flowers, leaves, fields. The painting titles, such as “A Shadowed Place to Sit and Sing,” invite you into poetry.

The many layers of wax used to build up an encaustic painting gives a translusence that adds to the hypnotic effect.

Seeing this show made the bells ring and ring. This might have something to do with my own dreams of late, that I need to be “in the company of trees.” In one of these dreams, I longed for wonderful trees, but doubted whether they even existed. “There are such trees,” I reassured myself in the dream, “but you have to go far to find them.”

I have been exploring ways to do just that. And Joyce Gehl’s work encouraged me to keep searching for my own "way through.” It encouraged me to go far
far into my art, my dreams, my deepest self—to find what I'm seeking.

Entering another artist's work
take us toward dreams of our own.

Note: Twenty-five years ago, I shared office space with Joyce Gehl. She was a graphic artist, I was a lettering artist. She brought her sweet dog with her to work, the good and noble Gabby.

7:30 BELLS Posts run every Tuesday.

7:30 BELLS Guest Posts run on the second Tuesday of every month. 
Join me on July 8 for a guest post with Edgar winning author Dori Hillestad Butler.