Posts Tagged ‘walls’

I am one of those people who can be physically moved by an image. Recent photos of the Pelicans on the Gulf Coast left me speechless, the photographs churning in my stomach for days, a disturbing mixture of Art and Reality. It was a visceral reaction, an emotional response that I could not control.

Strangely, rather than protest the recent bombardment of images, I would rather see them than not. With technological advancements, our needs have accelerated so quickly that Art has become far more mainstream, and definitely more provocative. An instant barometer for our feelings, it is easier than ever to express our point of view in a non-verbal way.

With a click of a button we can order four colored images of our dog,  a la Andy Warhol, or a giclee collage of our favorite swear word. Local stores have “handmade” pieces of found objects, abstractly joined together to create something that reminds us of a family heirloom. Your own original for only $29.95, plus tax.

As a sometimes annoying, self-proclaimed purist, I never understood the need for this. If I couldn’t have the original Andy Warhol, why bother? But, as our lives become more automated, Art, rather than suffer because of it, has blossomed into an important part of our every day existence.

Photographs can be downloaded, re-touched, re-sized and sent overseas in just a moment. Anything we want can be created and hung on a wall in minutes; an instant reminder of something we love, a memory or a secret thought.

In these days when we all complain about a disposable society and “chicken-nugget moms”, I am grateful that Art has become a beneficiary of our advancements, not a victim.

Enjoy it, use it, create it.

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I have a lot of things on my walls. A 1930’s ostrich feather dress for someone with a 22 inch waist, collage of old black and white photos, chalkboard,  souvenirs from countries I have visited, large paintings, a favorite book, a decorative wooden grate, a puppet, mirrors of all shapes and sizes, plants…..If I can stick a nail in it, or figure out a way to hang it, I will.

It’s not deliberate. I aspire to be a minimalist. Each time I redecorate, I take it all down, and promise myself I will keep the walls clean and open; more simplistic and calming. 

I have thoughts of soft creamy walls, slate gray sofas and a single, gigantic red poppy on the wall. Then, gradually, reality takes over and I add back more of my “stuff”, always seeing gaps that just have to be filled. As the room fills up, I feel comforted. I like seeing what I have, and being reminded of who gave it to me.

To some, it is clutter. My sister could not live in my house. She decorates in a way that I aspire to be. She is a creative soul; always changing her home with paint or new ideas, but she doesn’t need to have everything out for her to see. She wants the serenity of an uncluttered space, with a few, very meaningful things out for her to love. That is what makes her happy, and her home reflects that part of her. When things get crowded it feels claustrophobic and messy. Her walls are quiet.

For myself, I always seem to exist in a gray area, slightly hovering between neatness and eclectic chaos (I find eclectic always sounds so much kinder than messy). I have accepted that, while I yearn for more sparse surroundings, it wouldn’t be possible for me to live that way.  It does not suit who I am.

It’s important for our peace of mind to live within our own category. If where you are begins to feel uncomfortable, change it. We should live in a home that nurtures and replenishes who we are, not who we think we should be.


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I love Mirrors! I used to collect vintage ones at Flea Markets and Antique Fairs; at first because I liked the different shapes and styles, but later because I started to see them as pieces of Art. When you hang a mirror on the wall it does what it’s supposed to do, it reflects light. But it is so much more than that. Hung in groups, or singularly, they create interest in a far less obvious way than a picture would.

Sometimes mirrors are perfect as they are, but if not don’t hesitate to change them. One mirror I knew needed more character (the large wooden frame was very generic). I loaded spackle into a pastry bag and “piped” patterns all over. After it had dried I painted it cream, antiqued it with stain and sanded a few patches off. Now in its third reincarnation, many years later,  I have just painted it a dark red. Prior to paint it I first painted it with a glue that would create a crackle finish. I then rubbed it with aluminum foil to add some broken texture to it.

Other easy uses for mirrors:

– Place one on a dresser and put a collection of rocks or shells on it.

– Hang a group by the entryway instead of a traditional, large hall mirror.

– Hang one outside, on the side of a garage or shed, to create the illusion of an extra window or just for decoration (bring inside before frost).

– Etch an inspirational word onto one that you look into every day (use etching cream and a stencil).

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