DOORS OF PASSAGE
My grandmother came to the U.S. in 1920 from a little town in Italy named San Giorgio A Liri. My mother was born in the Bronx and despite her short life (I was 24 when she died of breast cancer), she dreamed of visiting her roots, but died before she could. In 1996, 10 years after my mother's death, I made that first pilgrimage on her behalf. I have connected with our family in Italy and have visited for years; when I arrive there is always screams of "The American is here."
For years I have hung prominently in my home and studio a tribute to my mother, her art and my heritage. She too was an artist but it took me till recently before I recognized that. This summer in Italy, I will pursue the study and creation of art that pushes me one step closer to the closure of my dream. One day I hope to split my time between Italy and the U.S.
This series produced a collection of 5 pieces of original art. Arches, paths, wooded windows and doorways in Italy inspired the subject matter. These "passageways" are the representation of the journey I have taken to heal from this loss in my life, the love of my Mia Madre. Although I have dabbled in this area, until now, I have not been ready to address the final passage. The passage will transition through the doors of calm and submission to acceptance. In writing this proposal I realize that my breakthroughs arrive in 10 year increments with this being the year of the 20th anniversary of my mother's death. I did not realize that till this very moment. Wow...
Before leaving for Italy, I studied under several local artists to expand my artistic style. This multi media series is an experiment with collage, watercolor, gouache and acrylic products as well as others through inspiration. I have been working towards this goal for a number of years and have been creatively inspired but the silent fear of addressing this loss prevented me from proceeding. I am no longer afraid to handle this creative task by bringing my emotions of life, love, loss and passage to this series through my artistic expression.
Spending time in Italy to study helped me complete this series. My goal is for others to experience some comfort or guidance from his series in any loss or life challenge they may have had to struggle through.
"When I am in Italy, I am home," I often note. My newest endeavor is "Le Porte di Passaggio" of Italian passageways. This series, I believe, will in part repay the debt I owe to my mother, my heritage, and my culture.