Dark Sky: Virgo

Tubac, an artists’ community near the border with Mexico is working towards an International Dark Sky designation ( As part of that effort the local organizers are working on a number of community events to celebrate the dark skies around Tubac. We have optical telescopes on nearby mountains so there are already some restrictions on lighting.

I’m anticipating a call to artists in the New Year and am trying to get a jump start on things. The full moon and the constellation Virgo will tie all the pieces together. The first piece, Hunter Moon is a commentary on our need to chase the night away with lights. As our bodies lose sight of the natural rhythms of day and night, so too our own internal circadian rhythms become disrupted. Many of us turn to pills to restore sleep. Virgo the constellation is revealed in the New Moon dark sky.

The second piece, Harvest Moon still features a red moon, but this time Virgo is front and center. The message lies in the harmony between the sun, earth and moon in the context of the cosmos represented by virgo, the maiden

The next pieces are still mind works…

Thinking about water

Goblets as canvass

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I use my turned maple goblets as a canvas to capture my emerging understanding of the Southwest desert beauty around me.

I moved to the Tucson area for a little over 4 years after leaving Quebec, Canada where I lived for 20 years. During those 20 years, maple trees were an important part of my life. My husband and I harvested maple syrup, The maple forest shaded our home in the summer and the bare bark and branches created stark contrasts against the snow of winter. We burned maple to keep our house warm and used it to construct decorative elements in our home. Now, here in Arizona I put Southwest motifs on Maple to communicate my perspectives as an Easter Canadian trying to understand the strangeness and beauty of the Southwest.

The maple I use is selected to have a very straight grain that I feel complements, rather than competes with the design work. I burn the designs into the wood using a hot knife (pyrography) and sometimes use the hot blade to burn texture as well. The vibrant colors of the India inks help me to capture the stark color contrasts found under our Southwest sun. I often use the round goblet form to create “dialog” within the piece by concealing aspects of the imagery on the other side of the goblet.


“Possibility” emerged subconsciously. The confluence of exploring the possibilities of inside/outside turning, my own emotional transition into “singlehood” and a serene experience while swimming in a pool and seeing my own shadow image in the pool resulted in a vision of my female forms emerging, phoenix like, from the old, incomplete world supporting a new hollow world order that is yet to be defined.Possibility1