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Flower Mandalas

Hidden mentors

30,000′, Boston to Albuquerque
Copyright 2013 David J. Bookbinder

When I began the Flower Mandalas project, I was dimly aware that I had been influenced by the work of Harold Feinstein, with whom I had briefly studied. And I eventually figured out that Harold, in turn, had been influenced by Georgia O’Keeffe’s flower paintings, and in particular by her book One Hundred Flowers. But what I had not understood until years later, when I visited the Abiquiu region of New Mexico, north of Santa Fe, was how pervasive her influence on me was.

I have been drawn to that part of the world on a deeply emotional as well as a visual level in ways unlike any I have previously experienced, and when I saw the mesas and mountains, even from the air on my first trip to New Mexico, I could not stop photographing them. It was only when I toured the Georgia O’Keeffe museum in Santa Fe on my second trip there that I saw how the landscape that had mesmerized me had also mesmerized her. For instance: Black Mesa Landscape.

Recently, I have also learned that O’Keeffe created a series of paintings that captured the bands of color of seascapes when she lived near Lake George, New York: Lake George, NY, by Georgia O’Keeffe. This, too, is a subject I have been drawn to for many years, and is the impetus behind a series of hundreds of sunrise photographs I took off the shore of Independence Park in Beverly, MA.

Independence_Park_II
Independence Park II
Copyright 2013 David J. Bookbinder

This has got me wondering whether our attraction to artists goes beyond a particular body of work to include their whole sensibility. Which has got me wondering about the artists among you. Has some kind of art — visual, performance, expressive — had a significant influence on you? Inquiring minds want to know….

More anon,
– David
David J. Bookbinder, LMHC

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Text and images © 2013, David J. Bookbinder. All rights reserved.
Permission required for publication. Images available for licensing.
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