The secret gallery’s blog

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

Posts Tagged ‘horse

A Horses Heart Weighs 9 Pounds

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So I just read that “a horses heart weighs 9 pounds”on one of my web wanders. There is just so much to take in, jumping from Blog to Twitter to Flickr to Facebook and Google searches and now there is Google Wave too. I think my head might actually blow off.

I took this photograph of Maya just after I witnessed her laying flat out snoring. That is why she have wood shavings on her ear and she is looking very sleepy. This little sweetheart is the main reason that I have not be posting so often. l intend to start writing this blog more often now she has got settled in to her new home.

I think that having a heart that size is pretty amazing, but it makes sense that these great animals would have big hearts. Trotting down the road this evening was like sitting on a bouncy ball with split second responses, just kept together. It is fascinating to get a feeling of some of that raw and instinctive prey animal’s spiritedness. Communicating with a different species, Pat Pirelli says that one of the keys is that the horse becomes a little bit more human and you become a little bit more like a horse. Just hope I only get a little bit like a horse!

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Written by Marianne Slevin

20 October, 2009 at 9:17 pm

Posted in the day posting simply

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Maya and herbs

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I like this photograph even though it shows very a dirty window and neglected herbs! It looks a bit like a painting. Currently I am gathering material for a new body of art work. I am not sure what will come out !

One of my main areas of interest is finding some sort of balance between a more frugal and hard core natural existence and a comfortable, convenient way of living, and if it is possible to live in harmony with the planet, particularly in our society. We have created a totally unsustainable way of existing on this planet. Sometimes I think that we are so far off the mark that even trying seems futile. When I move on from this negative thought pattern I  get excited by the thoughts of growing our own fruit and vegetables and collecting free food from the earth and sea. Looking out our kitchen window and seeing a beautiful horse makes me feel happy. It strikes a cord somewhere deep within me about something we are loosing; a more natural and harmonious way of life.

Written by Marianne Slevin

26 September, 2009 at 8:16 pm

Art! What’s that?

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As the 14th August edges closer and closer there seems to be more and more to do! I would like to be making more art but with each day bringing new things to do I feel like a paddling pooch trying to keep afloat on a very fast flowing river! It is a lovely river so that is alright. However when it comes to my art work I feel like there is a bit too much going on to really be in that space right now.

And now the Big Big Big Day has been, what shall I do? The Exhibition in The Courthouse Gallery in Ennistymon nicely sealed up the paintings that I have been working on over the past 18 months. It feels like that body of work may have come to a closure. Now I am drawn to making some other work, for a while at least. I will be cleaning out my studio, putting the lids back on the paint encrusted tubes of oil paint and trying to resurrect my brushes for the next time I want to make a journey in the strange and confounding medium of paint!

I am still not sure what that studio space or non studio space will be filled with, at the moment a big bay horse is having a go, but she will have to get into the creative spirit if she is to have all of that studio space! Such as modelling the “dream horse blankets” that I showed images of in an earlier post, for some video work and photographs. I am not sure that I will be bringing my camera with me while I ride her for a while yet, to take photographs of our shadow. Kate my last pony was very patient while took hundreds of photographs but Maya is very young and we will see how it goes!

Written by Marianne Slevin

27 August, 2009 at 10:11 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

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Nobody Cares About Art!

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“Tree Horse”, oil on canvas  2009 Marianne Potterton

I finished this painting today. It was so good to be painting again. I kind of switched my brain off and let my hands do the thinking. Sometimes it is nice to let a painting sit for a while and not rush into finishing it too quickly. Then just trust in your own ability to finish it.

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As you can see from the sign above and the title of this post, I am feeling a bit disheartened about peoples lack of interest in art. If you are reading this you are an exception ! Thank you! 

Written by Marianne Slevin

9 May, 2009 at 6:20 pm

Posted in Oil on canvas

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Horse in the Mist

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“Horses in the Mist” oil on canvas                                 Marianne Potterton 2008

 

I painted this oil on canvas several months ago. It has been through many stages and I struggled with it as it became muddy and confused. In the early stages of its life our children painted it with me as we built up a variety of marks together. One of the things that I like best about this painting is the contrast of the definite shape of the horse with the loose marks that could be flowers or could be something else. It is hard to see something being one way without having its opposite to contrast with it.

I have been drawing and painting horses since I can remember, as have many people since cave paintings. There is something almost timeless about horses. Artists have used them in many different ways in their work. Joseph Beuys used real horses. Jack Yeats painted many horses, I remember sitting in front of one of his paintings in the Hugh Lane Gallery in Dublin and crying, it was so full of feeling. It was probably nearly 20 years ago and I still remember it well! Paintings and other visual art can look great in reproduction, but their is nothing like sitting right in front of one you love!  

Written by Marianne Slevin

2 February, 2009 at 6:20 pm

Posted in Painting

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Dreams and the subconscious in art

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For many years dreams have played a large part in my art. My degree show was an instillation which was inspired by a series of dreams. There were nine horse dream blankets, they were the size and shape of real horse blankets. They were suspended between the floor and the ceiling, like bridges between the earthly and the spiritual. They were made from different materials  including: hay, hessian, clay indigo pigment and poppy seed stain, some of the blankets had dreams written on them.

Last night I had a dream about painting, all I remember was in the dream I realised that when you are painting you have to become the painting. I think this relates to how connected you are to the painting when you are working on it; that you really have to feel it. It is a little bit like how the Zen masters become one with what they are meditating on, or say writing a Haiku about.

Sometimes it feels like you become the painting and sometimes it feels like the painting becomes you, it is a dialogue between the artist and what is becoming revealed through the painting; or the conscious mind and the subconscious mind.

As a child, one of my strangely strong memories was of thinking to myself that, I wanted to invent a way for us to tap into the subconscious mind. Then I did not know how art could do this. It is strange, or maybe not so strange that this is what I am still attempting to do!

Written by Marianne Slevin

23 September, 2008 at 9:31 pm

Art and Horse Riding

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I agree with the artist Deborah Butterfield who makes large sculptures of horses out of pieces of scrap, when she described horse riding as a "kinetic language" and that we try to "communicate with another species". I have been fascinated by this kinetic language since I was eight years old when I began to learn about horse riding. I think my first lessons in art came from my horse riding instructor, Fergus O’Connor. Since then horses and the art of horse riding have been a huge inspiration to me. The feeling I try to (though don’t often!) achieve while on a horses is a dynamic, athletic movement that is so soft and balanced it almost like floating along in a dream! It is both effortless and precise at the same time. I think this could be applied to just about anything, but to me it is the same feeling I try to achieve while painting in many ways.

Written by Marianne Slevin

12 September, 2008 at 11:30 am