|Dry stone wall in the Burren, Co. Clare, Ireland|
I've just returned from teaching a Workshop in Wild Places class in the Burren in County Clare, Ireland. Writing this post, I'm reminded of another post I wrote after visiting Inishmaan, the middle of the Aran Islands off the west coast of Ireland several years ago. Stone walls crisscrossed the island in tight webs like a fisherman's net. I wrote then that the web of stone walls made me think of the idea of putting limitations on our painting as a way of exploring more deeply and how walls give limits against the limitless. You can read that article here.
But back to the holes in the walls to let the wind pass through. These imperfections actually make the walls stronger because of this flexibility, this breathing space. A rigid wall tries to hold back the wind. The walls remind me of an artist who allows for mistakes in their work, who accepts their imperfections. We want to see an artist's hand in the work, their humanness. We want to see the rawness of their work, their deep emotional connection to the land.