We are driving to see an exhibit on Carl Bloch.
Wendy’s brother, Brent, went to Denmark to help with the exhibit. He filmed some interviews and atmospheric pieces on the artist. He then made a introduction piece on Bloch that was projected onto three walls at once for a very immersing piece. He also aided in other design elements of the exhibit. We were in town and he offered to show us around.
It is Christmas eve. We had hoped for a white Christmas. The day after we arrived it dumped about a foot of snow in the valley. I do not recall seeing so much snow in the valley. I have seen snow fall few enough times that I am mesmerized by it. I am not sure if people stop being enchanted by falling snow, but I do not how one could stop.
It reminds me of going to the beach with my cousins. I grew up on the coast. I love the beach. It is part of my youth. The methodical pounding of the waves. The cool air off of the ocean. The smell of the salty foggy air. The power of the waves churning me about as I play in them. It is powerful and soothing.
When I go with my cousins, they just stare at the ocean. It is the first time they have seen it. They are in their teens. They just stand and stare. I smile at first. They continue immobile for minutes. I begin to laugh. It is a joyful laugh. It is special to be there and see them experience it for the first time. It is so foreign to me. This gaping at the ocean. I love the ocean, but I cannot see it through new eyes.
I do not recall exactly how old I was when I first saw snow fall. I was also a teenager. I was with my cousin. His mom had rented a cabin and we had gone for a weekend trip. I awoke in the fading dawn. As the golden light slid above the pine tipped summit, I saw the air shifting. White specks floated quietly down. The trees were crowned in white, and the earth was beneath a perfect blanket. I was stunned. I had seen the snow before, but never in its fresh richness. I did not move until the sun had changed from a golden globe to a hot blinding light.
There was no one there to gape at my stunned reverence. However, I understood my cousins’ awe at the ocean. We can love the familiar. Certainly we do. The sounds, sights and scents of our youth are adored by us. However, the unknown is able to overpower us.
We enter the exhibit. Isaac and I walk up to a painting that had been taken from an altar in Denmark. I find the piece hypnotic. The artist’s use of light almost makes the piece three dimensional. I bend down to ask Isaac what he thinks of the piece and stop. I notice in his eyes the same awe that I saw in my cousins. For minutes, Isaac stares at the painting. I watch him. We have seen some of the great masterpieces over the last while. We have been to some of the best museums on earth. This piece and this artist are not as well regarded.
Yet, Isaac is interacting with it in a way that I have not witnessed him interact with other art. He looks upon it with surprise. He did not know that art could draw such emotion. That it could force a new perspective on him. Aide him in seeing through new eyes. I think back to the ocean and the snow and my own experience with art. I love that life can overpower us, and think that art is truly masterful when it demands a similar response.
Canon 17mm f4 tilt shift goodness.
BLUE LILY | Lifestyle Photographer | Salt Lake City, Utah