Tuesday, 23 May 2017

Raising Ebenezers

I have blogged about this little sculpture before. It is "Community" by Sonja Landweer, and it is my very favourite piece in the whole of the wonderfully wonderful Ulster Museum. I have always loved the diverse mounds and pillars and surfaces, all of us in all our shapes and sizes, how we look and how we feel.

 We spent an evening in the Museum one Friday night last month. Such a hoot. It was open for one of Belfast's Real Sketchy events, where you roll in and wander, with a drink in your hand, live music in your ears, and sketching any of their treasures as you go!
 It was planned to coincide with the Museum's hosting of the Lines of Thought exhibition- sketches of masters from Michaelangelo (in whose fat belly this middle-aged and spreading woman found much solace) to Picasso. The Barbara Hepworth is all ours, but it was gorgeously intimate to be there after hours, able to look and consider, though still not touch!
 Some people took it very seriously. This is Colin Murphy, a Northern Irish comedian we laugh over when we watch the Blame Game on BBC1. He really didn't want to be disturbed. I'm afraid I did. Couldn't resist. I don't get out much.

This is our friend, the prof, who doesn't wear shoes inside. Ever. Anywhere. When we first met him, and his fabulous wife, in church, we presumed it was a standing on holy ground thing. It's not. He just doesn't do shoes unless absolutely necessary. Darlings! It was just his sort of night.

Other people didn't take it quite so seriously. However, what I have since appreciated about Prince Charming's artistic output has become something very significant. PC downloaded an app that allows you to photograph something, and then turn it into your own piece of art. Very David Hockney. Very now. Darlings.
And so here is Landweer's community re-imagined a la PC. (That's a very PC word- apparently re-imagined is an old hymn given a modern twist.) And what I keep thinking about now, is how perfectly it illustrates what is increasingly for me a very, very fundamental truth. I Samuel 7:12. "Thus far has the Lord helped us." It's the story of Samuel experiencing the loud thunder of the Lord's deliverance, and setting up a stone, raising an Ebenezer, as a visual reminder that time and time again God deals with the details of our lives, the fights, the struggles, the worries, the times. I know that we know this, but I am not good at remembering this. I love the notion of having visual reminders in the landscape that say to this generation and the next- thus far has the Lord helped us.

So, until I can get some big rocks into the garden, I'm sticking with PC's Landweer!


Pom Pom said...

How very cultured, deep, and arty of you and PC - such smart cookies you are.
Community is absolutely beautiful, full of truth/TRUTH.

ellen b said...

Well your thoughts in words are very good words for me. That is an interesting app. I'm so bad with venturing out with new apps. Hope your week is going well.

Lisa Richards said...

So nice to get a peek inside such a classy event! I should sketch at a museum sometime. They are hard to come by in my neck of the woods. It looks like you had a good time!

Gumbo Lily said...

Fun art tour! I like your thoughts of raising an Ebeneezer. I hope you get a good stone for your garden as a reminder.

M.K. said...

What a fun event~ I'm wondering about your shoeless friend. What does he do with his shoes when he steps inside? Does he leave them by the door or slip them into his man purse? Or his pocket? Does he have flat, flexible slippers that are easy to stash? I'm fascinated!

GretchenJoanna said...

How stimulating! Thank you for sharing these bits and your delight.

Beca said...

I can see how that sculpture reminds you of the Ebenezer the prophet Samuel talks about. Yes the Lord does care for us and helps us in our daily life and helps us fight our battles. Great perspective.
xx Beca