This newest body of work, peculiar, is just that, peculiar. The drawings are odd, curious and a bit strange. These abstracted still life drawings combine sticks, rocks, bones and vegetables into works about life and death. This new works combines the knowledge of mortality with the great curiosity of death. There is sadness in this work and hope. There is knowledge and ignorance. There is play and fear. This work takes on the rhythm of Ecclesiastes Three, especially verse two, "a time to be born, a time to die..."
This work is inspired by how odd and strange people behaved when family members passed away. They didn't know what to say to me or even express their own compassion. They handed cards and sent flowers, but words seemed to be useless. This exchange of paper for my loss did help. This exchange of images and the written word brought comfort. The bringing of food and flowers spoke for those who did not have words. And, in the end, I found that words were useless and the exchanges of non verbal comfort brought love and healing more than any conversation could have.
One reason, the work had to be on paper was to represent this exchange of paper for grief and paper is fragile like the body. The sturdiness of the wooden panels represent the strength of the spirit. The rectangle of the panels are symbolic of how I see people compartmentalize grief. As if grief and loss can be contained to one exact moment, one period of time, one specific feeling. The palette of black, white and gray represent the movement of emotions that loss brings about. The charcoal is the representation of ashes to ashes.
Rick Bartow, Jim Dine and Edvard Munch were major influences for this body of work. I have been inspired by seeing their work in person, bringing with me this idea of the importance of always making. Each of these artists where highly prolific and were constantly experimenting with materials, concepts, and design principles. Two other influences are the exhibition, Body World and my skeleton, Reggie. You can see Reggie @m.v.moran on Instagram. He is one fun guy.
M. V. Moran recently earned her MFA in Visual Studies from Pacific Northwest College of Art in Portland, Oregon. She has a BFA in Painting from the University of Oregon in Eugene, Oregon. She currently works in the Eugene-Springfield area.