Monday, December 31, 2007

Memory of The Good Shepherd Home IV

This post is about Lupe. I did not know Lupe, but was assigned her bed the day I arrived at Good Shepherd. She had died and was resting outside my window in the cemetery. She had spent most of her life at this home and sadly knew no other life. When I went back there some years later, the nuns had sold the home and some developer turned them into condos. When I asked about the cemetery the manager told us that it had been moved elsewhere. Strange, but true.

Deconstruction: The cemetery, Our Lady of Guadalupe, and window are all vintage images. There are six layers, with one layer mask for the window/cemetery. It is Grayscale. There was one filter, accented edges.

I've been tagged by Sue O'Kieffe
Here are THE RULES:

1. Link to your tagger and post these rules on your blog.
2. Share 5 facts about yourself on your blog, some random, some weird.
3. Tag 5 people at the end of your post by leaving their names as well as links to their blogs.
4. Let them know they are tagged by leaving a comment on their blog

  • I was raised in the beautiful Pecos Valley of New Mexico
  • I am recently retired (again) after a few lifetimes of writing computer programs
  • I love animals, all kinds of animals!
  • My best friend, Linda, had a liver transplant about 10 years ago and is doing great.
  • Spring is my favorite season and I am eagerly awaiting the first violets.

I tag Lisa Sarsfield, Belinda (Bell's Nook), Rima (Marazine), Neda (Papiers Colles) and Nita
(Red Tin Heart)


Sue O'Kieffe said...

This image leaves me unsettled, because Im not sure what you are trying to show. The uncomfortableness has to do with the relationship between the Madonna and the window. Maybe that was intentional. I feel like the Madonna is there in name but not in spirit. It is fascinating to me how the window looks like a box (a coffin?) as well.
I want something..more contrast, more shadows, to get better feel of what you are trying to communicate.

Neda said...

Dearest Bobbie, thank you for the tag. I will come back to comment on the post...

Happy New Year! The best is yet to come, my dear friend :)

dianeclancy said...

Hi Bobbie,

I find this a powerful image ~ especially with the story! I am so glad you are sharing your history with us! Thank you.

Congrats on getting tagged ... I am glad I came over here first ... I was going to tag you, and then Neda and Rima (I knew Irene had tagged Beverly and Frances) ... so good ... I will tag someone else. But know you were thought of!

~ Diane Clancy

Bev said...

Not very nice for a little girl and must have been frightening to be assigned such a bed. Hopefully this art will help you lay the past to rest.

red tin heart said...

very interesting facts! i will do this post in a few days. i have been so busy the last few days...
happy new year. love nita

red tin heart said...

i love cemetaries. they completely fascinate me. and your story and art are wonderful. xoxo nita

John (Copyright JMM 2007) said...

This image is powerful and its execution strong - I do see the window/coffin. It is disturbing, but in a thought provoking way and I do the the Virgin as the salvation, the way to survive, into the after life.

You are not taking the easy road - there is thought and your message is beyond/above that which merely glitters or (without virtue) just lures.

I feel sorry for Lupe and all those with similar fates.

There goes I , but by the hand of God - for someone with Sacred Heart nun and Jesuit education I should be more religious.

A blessed New Year.

Sweet Irene said...

It is amazing to me how you can shape your memories into such powerful images that haunt me after I have looked at them. They often have something very unsettling and I find myself thinking about them afterwards. I wonder how these things live in your mind and how the images are born.

Poor Lupe, but poor you for having to sleep in her bed. Such an unsettling thought. Such an impact that must have made on you. I wonder if they really moved the cemetery or if they just bulldozed over it.

I do want to wish you a Happy New Year, Bobbie, although it seems almost unholy to do so now.

Debi said...

This image has the least information in it, but you have told a story that fills in with some vivid details.

Poor Lupe! And being in that room, night after night, you must have easily contemplated that would be your eventual fate as well. The B&W starkness of this collage conveys that possessive thought well.

Yet, you always convey a tenderness, which frequently stems from the religious icons in the images. Their tender faces and gestures being the "only hope."

I like the effect of the glowing markers -- eerie but also something else mysterious and sad. I like that there is a weeping willow outside the window, gracefully almost touching the headstones.

The more powerful your images get, the more disquieting they become. But THAT'S NOT BAD. That's POWERFUL and memorable. I believe Gina and others have said that as well.

Your work is superb, Mom. What in the world will happen when CS arrives?!

Sue O'Kieffe said...

i am waiting patiently for CS3(?) to arrive... :)

Rima said...

Happy New Year, dear friend! this is just to say that my tag-post is coming up!

Will be back to catch up


Lisa Sarsfield said...

Thanks for the tag! I'll post soon:)
Thankyou also for the wonderful comments you always leave me! Your so kind and wonderful!
This artwork is great! Lovely yet almost haunting. I like the mystery of it. It's great that you are able to communicate your thoughts through this medium and that you share them with us! I have never really seen art like this, prior to your blog and Diane's..oh and the mandalah's! Looking forward to seeing what else you come up with!
Lisa :)

Rima said...

Haunting and fearsome... correction, not fearsome, but mysterious, like all the other mysteries in this place. I wonder if I feel like this, because I believe that one of the fundamental bases of religious instruction and imagery is an unquestioning acceptance, and every time I see a representation of the Blessed Virgin, I bristle at this commandment. Children are (were?) asked to accept events that happened to them unquestioningly. As they grow up, they may understand intellectually, but emotionally, the same feelings remain - of awe, puzzlement and fear.

Anonymous said...

What a sad little story and a daily reminder of Lupe's fate outside your window. We are never forgotten so long as someone remembers.....

Enjoyed your "five" programming? That must have been an interesting line of work!

Bobbie said...

Sue, I appreciate your feedback. I too felt that it needed more, but was unable to fulfill that need and went with the less is more plan :)

Neda, Happy New Year to you too. Thank you for commenting as I know it is somewhat difficult from Lebanon.

Diane, I am glad I was able to give some of the feeling that I felt during that time. It is very healing for me to be able to put this out in the light of the day.

Bev, Yes it was hard to sleep in her bed and look out the window and know she was there. But further, the thought that she had spent her whole life in that miserable place was unimaginable to me.

Nita, I look forward to reading your list of 5 things :)

John, I hadn't made the association of the coffin window, except in an unconscious way. Poor Lupe needed the Blessed Virgin nearby.

Irene, It is strange to me how a cemetery can be moved or destroyed. Such a callow way to treat our dead. These thoughts have stayed in my mind for years and I'm hoping this series will help put them firmly in the past. I still have one more to post, but felt I was getting too depressed and so took a break with Home and Health :)

Debi, You know this story very well and so your feedback is most important to me. I look forward to moving on to more cheerful subjects. CS3 seems to be a problem and now am having to file a claim with paypal to get my money back.

Rima, so nice to see you here!

Lisa, I enjoy working in photoshop and doing these collages. They fulfill some need in me that I can't define, but that makes my life very exciting right now.

Barb, I did enjoy programming for many years and it was a good job. Now, I'm ready to move on to other things. I remember Lupe and maybe others will too through my art and somehow it is a tribute to her little life that was so miserable.

Rima, Thank you so much for taking time to comment here. I value your opinion so much. It is amazing to me too how I can can still have these feelings of fear and unsettledness after all these events took place over 50 years ago. I am glad that I can portray as art these feelings and communicate them to the viewer.

Thanks everyone, I really appreciate your thoughtful comments.

-K- said...

Very haunting yet very simple.