Thursday, January 15, 2015

"Hundertwasser 4" by Margaret Rankin

It has been way too long since I wrote about a print by the talented Margaret Rankin. (Last time was in 2010.) This image has been used with the artist's permission. Information about her and links to her online store, blog, Flickr, and Facebook pages can be found here.

I was especially drawn to this image because of my recent interest in ammonites, specifically ammonite fossil fields such as the one pictured below.

Photographs such as the one below feel like images of a mass burial, unearthed. Each fossilized shell is a spiral into infinity, unseen. Immortal, yet extinct; it is an eerie juxtaposition. In a small, strange way, I feel as if sacred ground has been desecrated, some secret, dark knowledge, revealed.

But in Rankin's print, I feel warmth and life. The spirals there tumble and roll, rise and sink, expand and contract. Though they are compartmentalized into rows, some break free, while others dig tunnels, build ladders, or otherwise expand their small place in the world. All seem to move and breath.

The title of her piece is after the Austrian artist Friedensreich Hundertwasser, known for his colorful paintings. As you can see from the example below, Haus im Wind (I), he also had an interest in spirals and bringing inanimate subjects alive with color and movement.

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