Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Who is an artist?

A few years ago I was asked to write something telling what I would do if I couldn't be an artist. I wrote that I would probably work in a gallery, have artist friends, attend art shows, and spend time in art museums. Basically, I'd do all the things that artists do. What would I then be?

Today, I think of the people I know who are right on the cusp, people who are artists and don't know it, people who are so talented and brilliant that they would leave a hole in the world were their works not seen. These people may never know their own talents and that they are truly artists.

The particular person I am thinking of is my best and most wonderful friend, Maritza Riley. Maritza has an eye for the gorgeous. Her decorating, sewing, even setting the table, are all artistic. Yet, Maritza doesn't consider herself an artist. She can do with her hands what few people can. She can create and she can make the world a more beautiful place. As artists, that's what most of us want to do.

Maritza created the quilt , above, I hold in my hands and my heart. I was with her, even helped, when she picked out the fabric but never knew that it would be her gift to me. I am awed with it's beauty. I love wrapping in it. I want to take it everywhere. I want to sleep under it and picnic on it.
The picture doesn't show it but the value pattern is flawless. The colors are exquisite. The greeens flow to the aqua and slowly fill the frame until the middle becomes the creamy white center with the tiniest little roses. The cinnamon flowers appear as butterflies resting on the bed. Who but an artist could create this?
Just between you and I, Maritza, my friend, who I dearly love, is an artist in the biggest sense of the word. I feel so happy and fortunate to have found her in this lifetime.
I raise a glass to all of you who sit on that cusp. You unknown and quiet artists. You humble creators of beautiful things.


celeste said...

omg! that quilt is *amazing*
your friend is *definitely* an artist. gorgeous!

Marijke said...

Hi Binky,
What a nice, nice piece on Maritza. She really is much like my grandmother, who was very creative, using whatever she had and making masterpieces. Yes, Maritza is an artist in many ways. Wish I was more like her.

wendy lee lynds said...

wow, binky, who knew you were a great writer?? enjoying your posts! keep going, baby! (and artist, of course!!) wowee. and your quilt is amazing. i can see why do don't want to part with it.....day or night....xoxoxo

Robyn said...

What a lovely post. There are so many Maritza's out there who would never consider what they do to be art. I love the way you put it... "Humble creators of beautiful things".