lots of glass, wood and paper, some cloth, mixing my media

busy busy busy
life these days: clearing out our parents' home
driving back & forth
sorting thru the rooms, drawers, bags, clothing, shelves, stacks, attic,
cellar, shed, there are even ceramics on the balcony waiting to be saved from the elements....
they collected many objects, countless memories
they would have been married 60 years March 8 this year, my dad would have turned 90 last Friday, he wanted to
we want so much from life

I'm bursting with energy these days
- no looking after our parents anymore -
from the moment I wake up I am ON!
all day long, until I switch off, say 11 p.m., when
doink, I keel over and fall asleep

for my mycelium-project I built this table from recycled materials:
legs found in parental shed
glass gifted by friend W.
table top and sides from repurposed cupboard
hinges found in possibly-useful-metal-bits-container

I have more fungi-experiments on north facing kitchen windowsill, the edible varieties,
to avoid contamination I keep them away from the fungi in my studio

only last week: snow hail freezing temperatures
we enjoyed an exciting walk together


several botched attempts adding up to a collection of stories-that-might-have-unfolded; mixed media in box frame I found in my dad's hobbyroom.
I also found lots of glass panes and other frames I can use



in the herb pot on the left I mixed 200 grams of my parents' ashes (100gr each) I
ordered gum Tragacanth and  gum Arabic, so I could make my own watercolours using their ashes as pigment; above you see the dilutions diluting following instructions found on the internet, one has to wait 24 hours
Today I started mixing the ash with the gums, using a pestle and mortar, a gift from G!

yesterday, as I was impatient to get started with ash-painting, I just got going: the very pale grey streaks here and there are actual ground ash simply mixed with water, the black is of course regular East Indian ink
there are many reflections here
I like that

I'll be making more for the exhibition in September
am now officially a member of WaardArt
although you can't find me there on the site just yet

after a first grinding of ash and gums a first attempt at painting with 'proper' paint, one may notice lots of grains still, so more grinding is needed

may your days be full


Marti said…
Ah Saksia, after my parents died, I found myself in a state of "furia" the Spanish word for fury...not that I was angry but I kept myself so busy, doing so many things, that it was like I was spinning in a fury state! I find it quite touching that you are using some of your parent's ashes to create art and I wonder what will come to the forefront as you paint, as you create...there is something so full circle about having them be a part of your artistry.
Saskia said…
'furia' pretty much sums it up Marti; I'm not quite sure how the ash-ink will pan out, just experimenting for now and learning all sorts of new stuff....which is always exciting....a close friend is in a similar situation having lost his parents in the same period as I have, and we find ourselves wanting to ask something about this piece of furniture or that particular plate, and then realise we can't, duh.....I remember my mum kept telling us: 'ask, ask more', but you just don't know at the time what it is you want to know
it's all good Marti, part of the cycle that makes up a life
had you imagined using the ashes before at any time?
do you wonder what you might want your own ashes to do?
Saskia said…
ha Mo, I didn't know he had done that, makes me grin though....I rather like to imagine my parents approving of themselves being turned into art.....come to think of it, my dad's funeral card said as much: stand here and you become art!

no way had I thought of using their ashes like this Grace, it 'came' to me a couple of weeks ago when my sister and I went to collect my dad's urn, fortunately she agreed to my plan!
I always say I want to be buried next to Tungsten in our fields, but that isn't bodily possible, so they'll have to bury my ashes there with him....Tungsten'll be mainly bones now anyway so that's okay
Nancy said…
Saskia~ Your line "we want so much from life" really stopped me in my tracks to consider it. Sometimes, yes we do...sometimes what we want changes and other times we (I) want nothing much, just flowing.
Your mixed media work looks so interesting...I could sit for a long while just looking. The last pic, the cloth is really special.
It's nice to see you here doing and creating and traveling on...May the journey continue well for you and your siblings. xo
Saskia said…
hi Nancy, that phrase just came to me, having written it I realised just how much it held (for me)
I look at us human beings, self included of course, always wanting and very (too?) busy
everything alive wants, everything alive eats something else alive, nature is insatiable and as we humans are part of nature, so are we, maybe one day I'll write a post on this
perhaps all my posts are an expression of this fact

(((welcome here my friend, on the journey we call Life)))
Liz A said…
I can relate to the "furia" that Marti describes ... yours is so purpose-full, recalling the weeks following my mom's passing when I sorted through her things, my dad at my side ... and yes, the wanting to ask ... my mom used to write little notes on yellow paper and tuck them into vessels, telling their stories ... anticipating the questions ... I wish she had done more ... I wish to do the same

the first "real" ash painting ... like a carousel horse ... and I think of Don's uncle, who perished in the World Trade Center on 9/11 ... he always said, "enjoy the ride"
Nancy said…
Oh my gosh Liz, I've done that same thing - yellow notes! I've slowed down tons, I don't know if my son has that interest...But, I did just consider one last night :)
Saskia said…
yes leave notes Liz! as I mentioned in a previous post I'm always so deeply touched when I find them, although of course my parents did not deliberately leave notes as messages, although my dad did on occasion....
'enjoy the ride' yes to that too Liz, it's so easy to forget in the humdrum of everyday life
Saskia said…
speaking of yellow notes Nancy, we, i.e. my siblings and I, are leaving sticky yellow notes all over the place on stuff we want to keep, for ourselves or our offspring, makes for an interesting walk-about-the-house;-)
keep up your good work!
deemallon said…
I’m too tired to respond to the personal aspects related here, but the eye candy of your paintings and fabric packets just are so satisfying to look at. Clearly in both the care before death and the cleaning after you have done something right.
Saskia said…
hmmm, have neglected my own blog!
Dee, the upheaval of late is ongoing, so much so it feels like 'normal'.....
maybe it is just that.....
was back in ancestral home;-) with my siblings last weekend, we had lots of fun together, we realise we are extremely fortunate as we hear many stories to the contrary; put two people in a room together-with-no-escape, there's bound to be an argument sooner or later....so far we have managed to agree on everything
Patty said…
You are created by your parents. In turn, you've chosen to create with their
remaining selves. Love that smile and red jumper!
Saskia said…
hi Patty, it is a great image of her



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