The Portal

An in-progress painting installation based on The Pipers standing stones near the Hurlers stone circles, Bodmin Moor, Cornwall, England.

The Portal, detail of painting installation, in progress
The Portal, front two stones in progress 
Left: The Female Stone
Right: The Male Stone
Oil on linen with water from the site in the gesso
Each 90" x 40", full installation size TBA

The Portal is a multiple component painting installation. In the two 90″ x 40″ canvases shown in progress, I depict the front sides of the standing stones known as The Pipers near the three Hurlers stone circles on Bodmin Moor in Cornwall, England. As seen in the scale model below, I will install these life-sized standing stones approximately six feet apart on custom kiosks so as to allow viewers to pass between the stones as I did when visiting the actual site. Due to the figural forms I see in their shapes, I consider the stone on the left to be the Female Stone, while on the right is the Male Stone. Considering the current importance of social distancing, the fact that the stones are six feet apart now takes on a new meaning.

On the reverse sides of the kiosks, viewers will find two 90″ x 40″ paintings of the backs of the stones. To represent the desired energetic shift in perception after going through what such a portal can symbolize, on this side I will depict the glowing aura of the stones, inspired by the energy field images of Kirlian photography. 

On the inside panel of the kiosk for the Female Stone, I will install a smaller work to call attention to a noteworthy feature: a small engraved cross. The wall-hung component will be installed just behind the two free-standing kiosks; for this work I have recently expanded my vision into an 80″ x 90″ diptych consisting of two 40″ x 90″ panels. Here I will depict the historically significant Stowe’s Hill as it aligns between the Pipers stones to represent a desired goal., With this installation, I aim to illustrate the type of shift in awareness or perception when passing through The Portal stones that such an initiatory experience can provoke.

I will debut the completed installation in my upcoming solo exhibition at the Southeastern Center for Contemporary Art, Winston-Salem, NC.

This project is funded in part by the North Carolina Arts Council, the Arts Council of Winston-Salem and Forsyth County, and ArtsGreensboro. In 2019, I was honored with a Duke Energy Regional Artist Project Grant by the Arts Council of Winston-Salem and Forsyth County, and in 2020-21, I received an Artist Support Grant from the three organizations. I am very appreciative for their generous support to help me realize my vision.

Scale model mock-up, The Portal painting installation, front view
Digital photographs on photo paper ©2019 
Each photograph 4" x 9", 1/10th scale of the linen canvases