I took a 458 mile pilgramage across Spain in the fall of 2012.
Along the road I doodled in order to recount my journey and publish a book.
I will be working on a new steel body of artwork based on this journey for my upcoming show May 23rd - June 7th - Next Gallery , Denver, CO. "The LIght of Ones Faith"
The Light of Ones Faith is based on the pilgrimage I took along The Camino de Santiago. It was along this journey that I discovered, questioned, and enhanced my understanding of faith. That deep conviction in oneself to understand that the meaning of their existence has a purpose and a guide. It was the incredible people I encountered along the way that shared their stories, love, loss, fears, joy, and most importantly, faith that became the light for me. For faith is such a personal choice, which is manifested through a variety of metaphorical abstract guides that truly are the concrete cornerstones of the world. The one thread through all the different perspectives I encountered was the belief in a light, that there is something outside of ourselves guiding us through the darkness and maze of life.
My faith is deeply tied to art. It is about the faith in myself, that my ideas will guide me, challenge me and enlighten my understanding of the human condition. Art is a leap of faith and abstract art is the best example. I choose to express those moments along the journey where the light of faith seemed most clairvoyant for fellow pilgrims and me. Faith is about letting go of the tangible and allowing the freedom of something intangible or abstract to seep in and light ones journey.
The Camino de Santiago, The Way of St. James, and Camino Frances are all ways to refer to one of the most important historical Christian pilgrimages. Since medieval times, millions have walked in order to find forgiveness, relief, spiritual awaking, renewal, contemplation, clarity, direction, entertainment or maybe a physical challenge; the reasons are as myriad as the pilgrims. Throughout the course of history this route has been the backdrop of many great and profound moments in the lives of walking pilgrims from around the world.
The pilgrimage originated from the tradition that the remains of the apostle Saint James are buried in the Cathedral in Santiago de Compostela in northern Spain. Legend has the he preached in Spain, rather unsuccessfully, then returned to Jerusalem where he was martyred by beheading. His body was later sent to Spain. His original converts may have been few in number, but over the centuries, there have been millions.
In the fall of 2012, I took this pilgrimage alongside my mother and sister. I was on a search to find the purpose of my spiritual and personal self. I was at a cross roads in my life, and it was critical for me to take time to question myself and evaluate the trajectory of my life. I knew I wanted to sketch the experience in order to reflect back upon it using the sketches as the seedlings for a new metal body of artwork based on my journey.
I wanted to draw along the way, because a drawing is more personal than photography and I remember the minutes I stood there trying to capture my surrounding environment with a sketchpad and pen in hand. The scenes and feelings manifested through an architectural, quick environmental rendering. I don't use pencil, so every line with the pen counts and every color is fixed, which adds to the fresh quick effect I have come to call my style.
The sketches became a conversational topic along the journey with fellow pilgrims, locals and tourist I encountered. They became something that connected me with others when language was a barrier. Drawings are an avenue in the dialogue of art that is universally understood.
Gathered in this book are all the sketch’s I did in the order of which we walked. For those I met along the way and shared these doodles with - this book is for you. For those that have taken this pilgrimage may it bring you back to moments along your walk and for those that have never taken a pilgrimage, may this awaken your soul’s curiosity about The Camino de Santiago, a journey through Spain.