A Year in Paintings and an Invitation

Next Wednesday, the 5th of August, I open my art show, Dream Maker, Heartbreaker at Culturecenter Grand Piispankatu 28, Porvoo, Finland. Welcome to enjoy Dreams and good company between six and eight pm.

Even if you can’t make it, I thought it might be fun to have a virtual art show here, at the blog. I know many of you don’t live in Finland.

Loving Self

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Loving Self Acrylic on canvas, 60×60 cm. 2014.390.00 €.

Making art, for me, is impossible if I don’t love myself consciously. Without love, I don’t ever get to the studio door, but instead I allow distractions and the needs of others to keep me away.

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Studio Door Acrylic on canvas 61×50. 2015. 349.00 €.

In order to make art, I must be able to be all of me. Every little last piece of my humanity is with me in the studio, which is why the studio door sometimes feels monstrous. Facing myself, all of me, again and again.

You can make art or you can be perfect

Crumbling Perfection Acrylic on canvas. 80x60cm. 2015. 333.50 €.
Crumbling Perfection
Acrylic on canvas. 80x60cm. 2015. 333.50 €.

Seth Godin wrote about this and I agree. The more I create, the more I crumble my expectations of perfection in myself, life and other people. Instead, I enjoy the ever growing creative energy that I can channel and trust my impulses and intuition to guide me.

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Not all Unicorns and Rainbows. Acrylic on canvas. 90×90 cm. 2015. 1,119.50 €.

Living my dreams, practicing self-love, being married, having children, working with other practicin idealists – none of it is all unicorns and rainbows. I would like it to be. Still. But I am learning to dance in this gap between the ideal and reality, letting it all move through me.

Just Breathe

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Remember to Breathe. Acrylic on canvas. 50×40 cm. 552.00 €.

Coming to the studio after a fight with the Engineer, getting two wriggly, unwilling, tired kids to school and finding out a workshop has been cancelled. I sit down in front of the canvas, relax my body, open up to my imagination and I just breathe.

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November Light. Acrylic on canvas. 73×100 cm. 435 €.

Approximately six hours later I wade through whatever weather there is, go get the children, cook, pack Taekwondo training gear and go train with my firstborn. Taekwondo keeps me both humble and in touch with my power. Centered in the midst of exploding force and knowing when to use it.

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Birthing a Dragon. Acrylic on canvas. 80x60cm. 552.00 €.
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Burning Bright. Mixed media on canvas. 50×40. 295 €.

They Will Ask: Who Do You Think You Are?

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Who Do You Think You Are? Acrylic on canvas. 90 cm. 920 €.

In any life there comes the time when someone asks this of you. Who do you think you are – to dream, to paint, to write, to shine? I think this is a kind of harvest time [despite the potential hurtfulness of the discussion]. Getting this question from the doubts inside or from people around you means that you are starting to have an impact.

That is at least what I told myself, when this happened. After having a good cry.

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Step Into My Arms. Acrylic on canvas. 140×100 cm. 920 €.
It’s Worth It

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It’s Worth It [Lazy Monkey Productions]. Acrylic on canvas 81×65 cm. 333.50 €.
A long time ago I read a book called Creating a Life Worth Living. This has always seemed like a worthy investment of my time. Life is so cumbersome, intense and scary, at times, it might as well be worth all the trouble. My fears keep whispering to me, it would be easier to live in quiet desperation, easier to “be normal”, just shut down, not feel it all, not engage it all.

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Hello Fear. Acrylic on canvas. 60×80 cm. 690€.

Then again. Each time I say hello to my fear and dare anyway, a new door opens up, a new potential awakens, something new becomes possible.

Part of Something Beautiful

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I used to hope I would find a community of people where it would be wonderful to work, where ideals would spring into everyday life and love would abound. This year especially, I have learned that we are all doing our best, even when we fall short. Maybe especially when we fall short. There is no perfection to be found.

Not in me. Not in you. And that is okay.

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Flowers of Compassion – Passion. Mixed media on canvas. 50×41. 295.00€.
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Flowers of Compassion – Beauty. Mixed media on canvas. 50×41. 295.00€.
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Tempted by Drama. Acrylic on canvas. 552.00€.
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I Forgive You. I Forgive Myself. Acrylic on canvas. 100x100cm. 1219.50€.

Compassion, taking care of emotions inside, instead of moving them into the relationship through drama. This leads to forgiveness. Seeing that things are what they are. Seeing people for who they are, instead of shooting out expectations like a sprinkler. Some lessons learned this year.

 Just Start Somewhere
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Just Start Anywhere. Acrylic on canvas. 80×120 cm. 790.00€.

If I’ve learned anything while painting fulltime, it is that starting is the most important thing. It gets the creative juices going, opens up potentials, teaches you things. Just start. The rest will take care of itself.

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A View Toward the Street. Acrylic on canvas. 61×50 cm. 349.00€.
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Longing. Acrylic on canvas. 90×90 cm. 690.00€.
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I See You. Acrylic on canvas. 80x60cm. 390.00€.
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Horn of Plenty. Acrylic on canvas. 55x46cm. 390€.
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Together. Acrylic on canvas. 61x50cm. 295.00€.
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Heavy Metal Hamster. Mixed media on canvas. 61x50cm. 390.00€.
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Tenderness. Acrylic on canvas. 60x80cm. 490.00€.
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Witching Hour. Acrylic on canvas. 80x60cm. 295.00€.
Befriending the Shadow

When you can’t beat it, learn to love it.

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Befriending the Dead Zone. Acrylic on canvas 80x60cm. 390.00€.
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Ogre Mountain. Art Encompasses Everything. Acrylic on canvas. 61x50cm. 349.00€.
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Celebrating Myself Home. Mixed media on linen. 100x140cm. 2990.00€.
And Then Sometimes Everything Goes Topsy Turvy….
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Daddy Is Proud of Me! Acrylic on canvas. 100x80cm. 1290.00€.

If you’ve been reading this blog you know that my Dad has used to be my greatest opponent. I had to literally go through him to get to my first art school. As we talked through the years, I realized that he just sees me so differently from who I am. He sees some parallel-reality Marie, an elegant, reed thin woman, who wears navy, always blends in and loves cocktail parties. He had the perfect life planned out for this first born.

Instead he got me.

So, this spring I thought I had waited long enough and I asked him: “Are you at all proud of me Dad?” He is. Despite my flaming red hair, despite my aversion to cocktail parties, Burberry scarves and navy clothes.

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Magical Woods. Acrylic on canvas. 130x100cm. 1290.00€.
Dreamer’s Ball
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Dreamer’s Ball. Acrylic on linen. 130x130cm. 2695.00€.

It’s been quite a year. It seems the further I dive into living my dreams, the more I feel – of everything. The challenges become greater, the demands on trust grow. Wouldn’t change it, though.

I hope you’ve enjoyed what you see, thank you for watching and reading. I salute you, Dreamer.

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