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of the Future"|
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Metamorphosis would be a good word for how, I guess, we all
work and change. I really strive in my work to become less uptight
and more flowing and natural, and I think I have been able to do
that a little more. I think I was more structured and fussy early
on, and I've become more relaxed and natural, and able to capture
what's happening accidentally with the mediawhich is just
my joyrather than trying to force something on it.
was on my way to a team meeting at school, and everybody was gathering
around the TV. We didn't have our meeting. We watched the news for
quite awhile, and we were just all kind of in shock, I guess, like
everywhere else. But then it was really weird to go back to the
classroom, and try to get through the rest of the day working with
the kids, and trying not to get them too overwhelmed with this news,
and yet to make them aware of the seriousness of the situation.
It wasn't till I went back to lunch and we're watching TV at lunchtime
that I saw the collapse of the buildings, and that was really almost
more than a person wants to take during the middle of a workday.
have a stepson that works in New York, and my first concern was,
where is he? What's he doing? Turned out, he was to be in the World
Trade Center the very next morning. So, we were just so grateful
that that timing was how it was. But my first thought was about
him, and about other people I know in the New York area. It isn't
likely that anybody I know was in those buildings, but you personalize.
did stop from our work and talk about it in every class. I think
the kids from the Midwest who didn't have any relatives in New York
or anything, think of New York, sometimes, as very far away, and
almost like a foreign country, and they didn't relate. I think they
have much since then, but I think their initial reaction was, This
doesn't have anything to do with me; it's not a big dealwhich
is really scary, or it seemed like it to me. I went through a real
range of emotions dealing with kids those days, because they were
saying odd and stupid things it seemed like. So you wanted to relax
and talk with them about it a little bit. This is important because
and this will not overwhelm us because
of the Future"
idea was future. You know, I was working on three or four paintings
at the time, and one was very ashy; I called it something about
ashes. And this was like, you know that song about the rose blooming
in the springBette Midler's "Rose"? And I was thinking
about that song and how things can seem so grim and so dismal at
times. And yet, if you can keep that vision ofit may get worse
before it gets better, but it's going to get better.
it to be kind of a shadowy image that left something to the imagination,
like our futures all are. And yet, a rosy future sounds a little
trite. But you have to think that the best is yet to come, and that
we have a glorious future awaiting us in this country. And that
little floral imagethat's what it means to me.
haven't put a flag on my car, but I don't resent those who have.
When you're at an athletic event and they're singing the national
anthem, you're thinking a lot more about what it means to be an
American than you did a year agoI think you'd have to have
your head in the ground if you didn't. You spend a little more time
appreciating your freedoms and thinking about how would it be if
I were living some place else. We take all these things so for granted.
Even as diverse as we are, we can still be Americans and know what
that means to have the freedoms we have. And a lot of people say,
"Well, we don't mind giving up a few of these freedoms in order
to feel safe," and yet, that's very tense conversation, because
we love our freedoms, and we may not appreciate them fully all the
time until we see the flip side of that. But then we do see and
understand and realize how important it is to be able to wave your
flag and to present your painting.