The Gardener, graphite drawing, 10x12, Rick Beerhorst
"Patient persistence pierces through indifference, gentle speach breaks down rigid defenses." Proverbs 25
I have been sifting through my drawings that have acumulated over the past twenty years. I am noticing the themes that have surfaced in my artistic journey over these years. There was a time about ten years ago where I was doing a lot with figures working in urban gardens. I had come across this quote by Degas who said that, "I just want a little corner where I can dig assiduously". I think that short line hit a cord with me because I knew it was what I wanted as well.
In my drawing "The Gardener", we see a man patiently working away with his hoe in a back yard garden. This man becomes a symbol and a reminder of the powerful revelations that can be had when a person commits to persistent life long study in a particular area. However, there is a built in conflict here for me. What if the distraction that I am trying to resist actually holds some valuable puzzle pieces that are waiting to be filled in to my main inquiry. Sometimes these other paths takes us to places we actually need to go, in order to continue in our selected pursuit. As I try to understand this paradox I begin to wonder if it isn't something like the computer games my son used to play.