2 Tigers

Two Tigers went again to my biggest fans and cheering section, Andy and Fiona. I blame the fact that they bought a bright red couch as the reason I had to paint them a new hanging (nice couch, but the colour was as aesthetically at war with the original hanging I painted them as possible – quite certain they did that on purpose). I had this idea in mind anyway, so whether they wanted it or not, it was going to them. As a side note, that bright red couch is now sitting in my basement… a year and a half later they decided a black leather couch suited them better…grrrrrr…

Tastes in couches and the inability to MAKE UP THEIR MIND aside (hee hee hee), this hanging is really all about Andy and Fiona. Two Tigers represents their Chinese year of birth (1974…sheesh…puppies, the lot of em’…) and is indicated in one of the squares (bottom row, 2nd from left). Another square is a pair of swans with their necks intertwined (top row, 3rd from left). Swans mate for life… so, well, all I can say is they’d better stay together other than call me a liar!

This was where I came up with one of my favourite symbols of the sun (bottom row 3rd from left), which I’ve used in several hangings since. I also threw myself in there as the yin and yang symbol of the bird (bottom row far right, see Earth Bird for further info).

Listened to Ken Wilber’s Kosmic Consciousness and The Rocky Horror Picture Show on CD for most of this hanging. This hanging took close to 300 hours to complete. However, just so you know, that isn’t necessarily 300 solid hours of painting. A lot of my time spent “painting” is actually spent staring at the hanging and contemplating the colour scheme. Often there is a bit of re-painting involved when an original idea just didn’t fuse well with the rest of the hanging.

One night many moons ago, I was again trying to bolster my self-confidence by taking improvisation classes at a local theatre here in Calgary. That evening as I told a joke that I thought would bring the house down, I noticed that no one else was laughing but one cute red-head sitting in the front row. I looked over to see her give me the “I’m-pickin’-up-whatcha-puttin’-down” wink I and I knew I had just made a good friend.

Since then, I have been witness to the creative abilities that Mags keeps in her little pocket inside her brain that can open up and blow your doors-off at many unexpected moments. I have also been witness to the fastest tongue in the west and I don’t mean that in any “nasty” way. I have yet to see anyone match the wit of our beloved Mags. And the wall hangings that ended up on our wall not once, but twice, is yet again another testament to this great girl and her many abilities.

I was out shopping with Mags one day when she mentioned that she really liked the wall hangings in a particular store that we were in. Instead of saying that she would buy one, she said “I going to make one myself.” And she did. And it was awesome. And then she did one for us. And it too was good. But then she did another one and it was even greater. This one was perfect.

Our wall hanging that hangs ever so powerful and mesmerizing in our living room means very much to me. It has symbolism so deep and rich that any individual who knows the personalities of me and my husband would completely understand each character specifically chosen by Mags to represent us and our lives. I am not a fan of art for the mere purpose of filling space on a wall ‘cause it looks pretty. Art must move me and represent a little bit of me in some small way. Our hanging is dripping in purpose and meaning and that makes it fine art in my eyes. We also appreciate the dedication it took Mags to complete our hanging. I believe it was somewhere around 400 hours and listening to Rocky Horror Picture Show 20 times (in a row) from start to finish. I say, how many friends will do that for you.

I will end this by saying; I am thrilled, delighted, and touched very deeply by our wall hanging. But I think I am even more amazed by Mags’s ability to understand people and understand compassion enough to interpret them into art. That is talent and that is a gift.

Fiona (and Andy), proud owners of a Mags original.

2 Tigers (54″x78″)
April 2003 / Calgary, Alberta