Procession: 12 Women

Number 10 on 18 September 2000

In 2000 I started a series of more than 200 charcoal and crayon heads, only one of which was drawn from life. I love this kind of investigation – seeing what can happen in the same 15 X 11 1/2 inch space, with the same materials, and no idea of where it’s going.

I do a lot of work in sequence, usually without any preconceived ideas and agree with Eduardo Chillida that: “A work born a priori is born dead”. The real quest is to make something you have never seen before, but something that you recognise as your own. This usually means a lot of trial and error and duds thrown away. Before I delete, I number everything: day, month in Roman numerals, year, and sequence number for that day’s work. I learn a lot about the work, because of the numbering. Of the 12 drawings chosen for Procession:12 Women, many were done in a single day’s work, at different points in that day’s sequence. Some days – you’re in the “zone”.

On a more personal note, I have always been moved by parades – doesn’t matter what kind, or who is in them – when people process – I’m weeping. I’m certain there’s a major leitmotif in this idea, but for the moment I had no idea where these drawings were leading. The ones that “looked back at me” were collected into a group of 12. I constructed a digitally printed continuous procession entitled Procession: 12 Women, and that work lead to the Procession: 12 Women, Movable Book Room. The little book work was included in the Crayola Dream Makers publication celebrating artist’s illustrated books in education. All 3 layers of this work process were still on the work table early in January, 2004.

Procession progressionProcession drawings & model