Chorale

 

                                                   Apotheosis of the Corn Goddess                                                                                        Burning Sheaves     48"H  x  66"W    oil on canvas      

 

                                                                                                                                     Cornfield - Chorale    floorplan   76' diameter     

 

 

                                               Chorale    Seven paintings in oil  - 50' diameter semi-circle          Boat    36"H  x  36"W  x 60"L.   polychrome wooden sculpture     

 

Chorale  is a seven panel mural spanning a 50 feet occupying half of the Cornfield  ground.  The full floor design forms a 76 foot diameter circle to be made of painted and incised hardened earth, created in the spirit of the Native American Corn Goddess.  The 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, both in growing and harvesting food and the creation of art and ideas.  Moving outward in opposite directions from the center painting,  Apotheosis, 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

                                                                                                                                                                          Chorale

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 circle the sculpture is to 'walk on water,' to dance on the sea of Maize. 

 

 

 

                                                                                                                                 

 

                                                                                          

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

 

 

                                                      

                                                                                                                               

 

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

 

 

 

                                                                                                                           

 

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

 

 

 

                                                                                                                             

 

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

                                     

                                                                                                                                                                                                    

 

                                                                    

  

 

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

 

 

 

                         

 

                                                                                  

                                                                                                           Artwork and design  © James Nichols 1976-2023    All rights reserved