21st CENTURY ART, C.E. - B.C.


"...the geometry is the light..."

Julie Custer, Jill Foote-Hutton, Jann Garitty, Horst, Andy Jordan, Sharon Kallis, Shannon Kirby, Barbara Meneley, Teresa Redden, Connie Sabo, Jennevieve Schlemmer, Robin Worley and Mary Welch, curator


CLOSET





Ethereal dresses honor spirit of "wayward" girls by Sheila Farr, Seattle Times




Sharon Kallis





Plastic and dog hair




Mary Welch





Tinned copper and pearls






Connie Sabo





Newspaper








IT UPSETS MY CAT

"Is it better to be caged and freed, than never to have been caged at all?" Barbara Meneley



You
know my cat
well enough to know
that he is as opinionated
as a cheetah, a snow leopard, a yeti,
whose white paws tap at the universe,
the objects of perception.

It upsets Shiva-purna
to see those twelve 22 foot dresses
(hanging in our Great Hall the "living room,"
Closet, if you will, in this 100 year old nunnery
that supports Shiva-purna's perch and my eyrie)

made of felted, bright wool, layer upon layer of reds,
yellows, and a shade as dark as a Siamese cat's ears;
made of clear plastic and dog-hair, ballooning like Marie
Antoinette's ball gown; made of a slim column of silver mist,
dissolved by sunlight, buttoned with black pearls; made of dark,
scented, diamond cuts of ecologically-to-be-treasured Scotch-broom;
constructed of stained-glass-mullioned-window trim beneath a dimpled
scarlet silk; made of a torso-ed chandelier, shimmering with
white-thread-weaving crystals;
made of tightly twisted-living-newspaper
stories -- a kimono, thirty feet long, its train splaying out across the ancient, saged boards;
made of
slim rusted-wire, a mannequin-ghost, its drooping,
sleeve-arms snaking
around the polished floor;
made of saris and ties, a peacock-tailed-phoenix; made of
ceramic, a white-bodiced, hearted-paean; made of white-polypropylene crochet
with blue-belting-straps feathered to enclose the blouse; made of pale blue-gray canvas
and white, a medieval nuns gown with pomegranate heart.

Shiva-purna,
atop the balcony wall, gazes and gazes
as if he expected the out-sized birds to move about.






He is stunned by their immobility and silence.
He hops down, hunkers in the well at the top of the stairs,
meows to go home.

So intense is his desire to return
to his furred, brown velvet pillow
that he learns to paw open the dead weight
of the fire door.

Tomorrow, he crouches again in the hall,
guarding the door to the "Closet"
begging to be let in to face his terror.

One morning,
a bird perched on the west shoulder of the kimono.
Shiva-purna strained forward.

Before he can sprout wings,
I open the door, toss him
toward home.








Installation images copyright © 2004 Roger Steen
Shiva-purna image copyright © 2004 Mary Welch

21st Century Art, C.E. - B.C., A Context

"It Upsets My Cat" Copyright © Jan Haag 2004
ALL RIGHTS RESERVED



Jan Haag may be reached via e-mail: jhaag@u.washington.edu




BY JAN HAAG


MUSIC + POETRY + TEXTILE ART + TRAVEL + ESSAYS + FICTION

INTRODUCTION + HAAG'S BIO