Winging Away, No. 1

When I posted a pic of the wheels on Monday, someone said they were curious about what my inspiration was for this little piece.  Well, here 'tis! :)

I have been feeling de-motivated and pressured at the same time – an odd combination I admit; but I have a number of upcoming due dates: pieces promised for a number of shows, pieces needed for my Group of Eight Challenges, as well as pieces for a show and sale I've committed to next summer. I know that Summer 2014 seems a long way away, but I have to fill an entire space with my "real"* work as well as "portable property" as a I call it – small pieces at inclusive price points.

Contending with how to make something that pleases me as an artist that can also be sold at an "inclusive" price; trying to produce work to a deadline for challenges I feel uninspired by for GOE, as well as for shows that I now feel equally uninspired by (although I have committed, in writing, to the curators, so I *must* make and send the work); as well as trying to produce work for the show at the end of the August  - *phweh*. 

All of that, not so strangely, has been taking me away from my "art" and making me feel down.  *le wah*

So I was sitting in my studio, pouting, and wishing for, as always, more time.  Wishing I could fly away.  And I started thinking about the things I used to escape when I was a little girl.

My beloved trees and lake of course, but there were also the fields of wild grass on our property – grass that was so tall that if I sat in it cross legged, I couldn't be seen even though I was within shouting distance of our house. 

And my little red bicycle.  

My little bike took me away.

Far away from home, and rules, and demands, and "must do's" -  and on adventures through dirt roads and sun dappled paths, to abandoned gravel pits and quarries; deep in the woods to swimming holes and berry patches, caves full of quartz, and shale and mica; and glades to rest in with soft leafy beds and the wind sighing though the trees.

My bicycle gave me wings.

And because the bike was somewhat fussy to make, the little mechanicals of the making allowed my subconscious mind to rest, to evaluate and re-assess, to come to decisions in its own time.

I feel much better now.

Thanks once again to my little red bike!

Kit 120

*I've been getting a lot of questions lately about my defintition of "art" as I keep saying I'm not making "art".

To me  when I make "art" I am trying to convey something or evoke a response.  If I have no intention in the  creation of the piece, then I feel emotionally separated from it, I find no pleasure or "art" in it.  To find happiness in my own work,  I need to find meaning, which sometimes is there when I begin the work, sometimes develops in the acts of creation, and sometimes travels with me the whole way through, only to slip away as I near the end.

"Meaning" is often transient in my work, but will sometimes reappear through some odd alchemy that I can't control. All I know is, if I can't find the meaning in my work, then it doesn't feel like "art".

Kit Lang


  1. Awesome - you should print this post and put it on the back of that piece, well said. And, aren't we fortunate that we grew up in a time when we could do that. I remember my brother and I pedalling our bikes all over the place, and seeing, really seeing, things we might not have otherwise.

  2. This is a great piece and I love the story of your red bike! Our bikes gave us such freedom (mine was blue).

  3. My Schwin was blue and white and took me all over town at a very young age with my girlfriends on their bikes.
    I love this art, the wings, the suspension in the sky, the dream quality it has too. Beautifully executed.

  4. I feel the message of freedom and getting away in this piece for sure. Ride on!

  5. I feel the message of freedom and getting away in this piece for sure. Ride on!

  6. My bike was a rather large second hand red one. It definitely did provide 'wings' at that age.
    Sometimes I think art can be just for the joy of making it. One persons definition if pretty might be art for someone else. Does it have to send a message, and if so what kind of message?does the person doing it need to intend a message or can the person viewing it interpret a message. It's thought provoking.

  7. This piece is a real favorite for me.......and of course that's how we spent our summers as well. Armed with sandwhiches and koolaide off we went exploring on our second hand bikes....such lovely memories.

  8. A very insightful post. I like the fact that your little red bike has worked its magic once again. I particularly like this piece.

  9. Oh yeah - the joy of riding my bike on a summer afternoon ... I just love how you pictured the idea of freedom in your quilt!

  10. whoa, i am sympathetically overwhelmed just by reading this. you'll do great, but it'll be hard work. good luck!

    and i love your little bike!

  11. I love this! With the importance that my cycling holds for me, for its therapeutic value and almost zen-like 'escapism', this piece speaks to me! Oh how I miss it...can't wait for this wrist and finger to heal so I can get back to it!


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