Mary Kay Neumann Artwork

Musings about art, activism, artists, climate change from the studio of Mary Kay Neumann

"Scorned as Timber, Beloved of the Sky" Emily Carr

"Scorned as Timber, Beloved of the Sky"  Emily Carr, 1935 Oil on canvas, Vancouver Art Gallery   

"Scorned as Timber, Beloved of the Sky" Emily Carr, 1935 Oil on canvas, Vancouver Art Gallery


I would rather be painting than writing. Yet I am filled with thoughts about art and artists that inspire me, and so wanted to honor this train of connection. Emily Carr has been on my mind.

Emily Carr is a well known painter in her native Canada, and yet, here in the US, I find so few people, even people well versed in art, have ever heard of her. She was a brave, strong, independent woman who was ahead of her time. She was a passionate spirit and sought to chronicle the beauty of her beloved Vancouver Island forests, that she witnessed disappearing under the ax of progress.  She discovered First Nation totem poles just as they began disappearing.  She found them neglected and abandoned, as was much of Native life and spirituality in Canada. Due to the dominant European values that had overtaken Canada, First Nation ways of life were forbidden and condemned by the people who had seized their lands outlawed their sacred traditions. I dedicate this entry to her wild courage, her feminist soul. She made paintings of ancient trees that, in her words, "go whiz-bang and whoop it up". Emily, in your words, you "make strong talk".


UPDATE: April 2015

I had the honor and pleasure of being able to view my very first Emily Carr painting in person. Oh words can convey the power and majesty of her strong, vibrant paintings. If you are ever in Victoria, Vancouver Island, BC, please visit the Art Gallery of Greater Victoria for an amazing treat for your heart and soul.