Apotheosis of the Corn Goddess                                                                                                                              Burning Sheaves     


                                                                                                                                     Cornfield - Chorale    floorplan   76' diameter     



                                                                                       Chorale:    Seven paintings in oil  - 50' diameter,  w/ polychrome wooden sculpture Boat


Chorale  is a seven panel mural spanning a 50 foot semi-circle, occupying half of the Cornfield  ground.  The ground itself is a 76 foot diameter circular design made of painted and incised hardened earth, created in the spirit of the Native American Corn Goddess.  Seven paintings sit atop a wooden architecture of bases and video displays, all meant to sing as one while corralling the viewer's attention in the center of the exhibit. 

Thematically, Chorale  expresses the phases of nature and cultivation, be it growing and harvesting food, or the creation of art and ideas.  Moving outward in opposite directions from the center painting,  Apotheosis of the Corn Goddess, there are three paired paintings, beginning with the theme of creative potential (Tractor / Wheelbarrow ), transforming into the theme of sustenance  (Nitya / Garden Electric ), and finally onto dissolution (White Cloud / Yellow Cloud ).  Another way to look at Chorale is in terms of self-effort and grace, the essential elements of the spiritual journey.  To the right of the centerpiece are images of manual labor and self effort, symbolized by the wheelbarrow and it's tools.  To the left are images of automation and grace, symbolized by a tractor and the rider thereof.  At the outer ends are images of chaos and harmony, complimentary opposites.  Apotheosis  is both the source and culmination of these two directions. 

In the center of Chorale  floats the Boat


The wooden sculpture Boat  was created as a polychrome free-floating ship anchored inside the Chorale space.   With ‘grain silos’ as masts, which are also suggestive of linghams and dock moorings, the deck has been painted with the image of a cornfield.  Boat functions as a multi-dimensional symbol, a layer cake of both masculine and feminine energies - a repository, a silo, a womb, an ark - a ship with it's dock planted firmly within, resting between symbols of expansion and contraction.  The destiny of Boat  is to ‘float’ next to the Dais in the middle of Cornfield.  Just as its anchor also floats, to view the sculpture by walking around it is to 'walk on water,' and dance on the sea of Maize. 







                                                                               Apotheosis of the Corn Goddess     84"H x 60"W  oil on linen                                     





                        Tractor    oil on canvas   48"H x 60"W                                                                                                     Wheelbarrow    oil on canvas   48"H x 66"W  





            Nitya - Blessing of the Land    oil on canvas   48"H x 66"W                                                              Garden Electric     oil on canvas   48"H x 66"W





 White Cloud    oil on canvas   48"H x 78"W                                                                                                            Yellow Cloud    oil on linen   48"H x 72"W 






Guests viewing the section of Cornfield entitled  Chorale  at a preliminary 'one day only' showing in Petaluma, CA.      







                                                                                                                 All artwork and design  © James Nichols 1976-2022