Thursday, March 6, 2008
VISITING THE MAUSOLEUM OF JACOB LAWRENCE & GWEN KNIGHT LAWRENCE
Today was a nice sunny day, No big winds, just a calm blue ski, not nice enough to take all of my winter layers off, but it was nice enough to do a lot of out door walking around, and not be uncomfortable.
I started out early, The art handlers came to pick up my work for the exhibit in Jersey City, after they picked up my work they went downtown to pick up Dorian Webb’s Chandeliers, then they went to Chelsea to the Gallery that represents me, The Stux Gallery to pick up my tent.
I have to call the Jersey City Museum Friday to see if everything arrived all right. I e-mailed the Sistah Paradise folktale that I wrote to be edited by the Curator Dr. Rocio Aranda, it's going to be installed on the wall in the exhibit. I'm still working on the wall text. I will finish it tonight.
A couple of day ago, I thought it would be a good idea for me to pay a visit to the mausoleum of the Artist Jacob Lawrence and his wife Gwen Knight Lawrence. They are interned together at the Cathedral of St John The Divine.
I go there every once in a while, I bring them a white 7 day candle, that I light in their memory and the memory of my parents Mommy & Daddy Bailey, and my best friend from high school, college and forever Joyce Sims Niles, who are interned in Seattle Washington.
(On an artist budget, they understand me sharing everyone’s memory on one and the same candle.)
Every time I visit The Lawrence's, I think back when I was a student at Pratt Institute in New York. I would go home to Seattle during my spring break, and I would go to the University of Washington and visit Mr. Lawrence in the art class he was teaching. He used to let me set in on his still life drawing classes, I really appreciated that, He used to use my charcoal drawings for examples for the class on how I used my lines, he was very encouraging to me. And after class he, his wife and I would go to his office and just talk, he used to teach at Pratt so he was asking about how thing were going for me on the campus.
I used to use examples of his oil paintings for my color exercises, in my light, color and design class in my freshmen year. The color and design compositions of his oil paintings were so well worked out, no space was wasted, or color unbalanced,
I remember talking to him about his painting classes and he told me that I would only be able to use five colors of paint in his class, he wanted his students to learn how to mix all of their colors from, red, yellow, blue, black and white.
When I left Seattle to come back to New York to finish at Pratt, He gave me his home phone number, I used to call him and his wife and tell them all about my dreams about being an artist in New York, and he was always so excited about what ever directions my dreams would take. I remember telling him when I first arrived in New York and I saw the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade live for the first time. I told him that I wanted to design floats for that parade. He really got a kick out of that.
So. I walk up the hill to St John the Divine Church, and visit them from time to time, with my one white candle for the both of them and my folks.
I remember after the memorial service when they both were intern at the church after Mrs Lawrence past, when we were leaving from the reception, these two white peacocks were just a prancing & parading around the church yard grounds together with there feathers all up in the air behind them... I had to smile at that.