reflections on the year

rest in peace, acrylic on panel, 80″ x 80″, 2021

This year, 2021, I returned to a vocation that had been calling for a while during a most unusual time. Before I moved up to the woods I completed a theology degree at McGill University and a year-long internship at a hospital where I learned how to do Spiritual Care, or what used to be called chaplaincy. The ongoing pandemic nudged me to apply for work at a hospital. It seemed like the right thing to do given that I had just spent several years working independently on my art and I had no family to care for. I was honoured to join the frontline workers at a small hospital filling in for another chaplain who was off on maternity leave from January to November of this year. It was a tough job and truly fascinating. It is impossible to share the stories & silences from the very intimate experiences I had with the patients, families and staff at the hospital or the structural shifts that happened in my life as a result. On my days off, since everybody was under lockdown, I had a lot of hours to spend in my studio. This is the only new painting I made this year. A very large four part work on panel that began with a grid of lines and circles and became a puzzle of curves, interlacing imperfectly over geometric lacy constructions. It is very big! I hope that some day I will get to see it on a wall but today I laid it down in the yard behind my art studio in Little Italy in Montréal/ Tio’Tia: Ke and snuck up to my neighbour’s balcony to see it all at once and to take this picture to share with you. We all know that art is something that must be experienced and that little pixels take away the surprise and feeling tone of the true painting but it is the only way that I can share this work with you right now as we are hibernating and hiding from mysterious Omicron. I hope that you stay warm and protected this winter and that you find ways to stay connected. All we have is each other and even those ties that bind will all break eventually. RIP 2021.

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