The secret gallery’s blog

Maybe the first secret gallery in Doolin, Co. Clare, Ireland

Archive for January 2009

Sanitized Life and tending the fire!

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Small pieces of earth on the kitchen floor!

Old Christmas tree, coal, wood, turf, stone, leaves and dried grass




A little bit of outside inside!

For the last few days I have been tending a glowing fire. When the Children started to play with the contents of my tinder box, I thought what a lovely idea! It is miniature pieces of the earth, and full of energy. I left the little pieces of plastic in as a sad reminder of what we are doing to the planet that supports us. Life in this part of the world has become so sanitized; living at one with nature seems very remote. I do confess to being very speedy in sweeping up this lovely mess from the kitchen floor!

A fire really is the next best thing to the hot sun, now where is that heating oil lorry!!

Written by Marianne Slevin

27 January, 2009 at 4:20 pm

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Making practical things more playful !

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Our fridge-freezer had got very iced up, so this morning while taking out the melting ice I noticed that some of it had this pattern which looked very un-organic, the contrast struck me. When the children asked me why was I throwing ice out the door, I said because it was fun! So after I had flung the rest of the ice out the door, I took these photographs, smiling to myself because it was such a beautiful warm and sunny morning, and wondering would anybody notice the strange occurrence of ice outside our door on a warm day! Like when you see a car covered in a thick layer of snow when nobody else has any on their cars or even seen any near by!



Ice on a warm day!




Ice on a warm day!

Written by Marianne Slevin

26 January, 2009 at 11:22 pm

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Allowing yourself to make "Bad" Art also allows Great Art to grow!

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A conversation I had with James my Muse, led me to think more about how important it is to allow yourself to make “bad” art, he suggested that if you do not allow yourself to write, paint etc. badly you probably wont allow yourself to write, paint etc. some of the great stuff either. What is the use in always travelling the explored paths and terrains if you want to find something great you will probably have to go to an unsigned place and create your own map to find it, these journeys can sometimes bring about some initially, very strange and ugly art it could even be very bad art, but one day you can find it and laugh so much at what a funny looking, awful thing you created! Or it might be fantastic! This practice of laughing at the awful things we create and do I have some way to go yet, but I am a willing student and how nice it would be to lighten up in the studio, and not take myself so seriously!



“Don’t sully my play and living in the moment, by calling it Art!”

Written by Marianne Slevin

22 January, 2009 at 5:23 pm

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Conversations with trees

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Drawings in the studio

Left Bird flight formation

Right Conversation with a tree



Detail of drawing

pigment and ink drawn with an eagles feather on wall-paper

A few years ago I attended a Shaman weekend workshop in Dunderry park, Co. Meath, which I really enjoyed. Part of the workshop introduced the practice of “Stalking Awareness” which was a very slow moving operation involving listening to the Earth, one particular morning this was followed by having a conversation with a tree, it is amazing what you hear when you listen! This particular tree was not too happy about man’s unharmonious relationship with nature, particularly roads and traffic, considering its close proximity to Tara and nearby motorway it is not surprising! I still don’t know if it was me talking or the tree, I suppose it is all the same thing!

Written by Marianne Slevin

20 January, 2009 at 12:28 am

Water, some Rose Oil and a Hand

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The moon is reflected in a distant rock pool



Caretakers of the earth not owners



All part of the same thing




Little waterfall


This morning James set me a challenge. It was to spend one hour in the bathroom with my camera. This challenge James said was to do with the fact that we as humans  like to put ourselves in places and situations where we can just go on auto pilot and hence use minimum effort, this can be good and bad. So doing this challenge forced me to do things that are different from usual. It is also my idea of bliss to spend an hour on my own in the bathroom, but I would not have thought of bringing in my camera so it was even more fun! These photographs relate to earlier interventions of mine, it was really nice to play! It is wonderful to have someone to think of interesting things to do that help you feel creative. Thank you my Muse!

Written by Marianne Slevin

15 January, 2009 at 12:45 pm