As I painted Family Treasures No. 70 – Broken Teacup I wondered why it had been repaired.
It couldn’t be used to hold tea anymore. The saucer was long gone. The repair was not exceptionally good, so it didn’t look nice displayed. I dipped back and forth into the puddles of neutralized colors I mixed on the small oval dish beside my palette. It, too, had telltale lines indicating where I glued it together after breaking in my backpack while traveling. There lay the clue…
I have no idea why my mother kept the poorly repaired teacup, but I do know why I didn’t throw out the dish I purchased for 25 cents at a flea market. I also know why I still have a few ratty items from childhood. I’ve had many nice things in my life that I’ve discarded, passed on, thrown out. Then there are the items that have been useful tools for me. They are extensions of my body, like fingers, arms or legs. They enable me to express, without interruption, the flow of energy that begins inside of me, awakened by an external sight, smell, touch or sound. I keep these tools in service as long as possible; they are not easily replaced. The ratty items from childhood trigger wonderful memories that might be forgotten if not prompted by seeing the item. The idea for the Family Treasures Series came from my desire to hold onto the memories without the three dimensional triggers. Now I draw the item, preserve the trigger and in doing so, preserve the memory.
I wonder what memories the teacup triggered for my mother.
Family Treasures No. 70 – Broken Teacup: Color Scheme #9 Complementary Triad, Hue # 10 Red-Orange along with dilutions and neutrals mixed from the three hues of the triad.
Limited Palette consisting of Gamboge, Cadmium Red Light, Alizarin Crimson and French Ultramarine Blue.