The Artist at Work

The Artist at Work
The Artist at Work

Saturday, April 21, 2012

New Moon Masks

Masthead for The Mask Project
Here we are again at the new moon, and the Denver Hospice Mast Project is in full swing. From now until mid-May you can bid online for over 400 masks created by artists, celebrities and local Denver, CO movers and shakers. All the proceeds from this bi-annual benefit go to Denver Hospice to aid their mission of providing end-of-life care that "encircles those facing advanced illness with unprecedented levels of comfort, compassion and expertise."

A visit to the auction site reveals an astonishing array of masks - from funny, to lovely, to seriously odd - a virtual catalogue of expressions, all valid responses to the human condition! You'll find masks by artists and well-known personalities, such as David Sedaris, Sarah McLachlan, Kevin Nealon, Paul Simon, The Manhattan Project, and the entire cast of The Office, just to name a few! Marcus created a mask to donate and we documented his process over the course of a moon cycle in the last several blogs. See his creation here.

Visit the site and tell us about your favorites. It's a perfect activity for the new moon as we all face the season ahead, fascinated and ready to be astonished.

Sunday, April 8, 2012

The mask revealed

The finished mask.
This weekend has been earmarked since the beginning of the year as one for sacred celebration. The first full moon after the spring equinox, known as the paschal moon, marks the Jewish observance of Passover. And the Christian holiday of Easter is always on the Sunday following the paschal moon.

And what a moon! On Friday night, we saw the moon rise above the French Broad river and the pale golden light on the water looked like a pathway into worlds beyond the imagination. All the dogwood blossoms unfurled this week, to receive the moon's clean light and glow from within. And all weekend long when the apple trees shed their blossoms into the wind and sunlight, one could almost imagine flecks of moon dust sifting down to glitter every leaf and blade of grass.

As the moon revealed her full face, Marcus completed the mask for the Denver Mask project. Following the raven from How Time Flies, the mask reveals a world beyond imagination, a world the paschal moon coaxes us into believing. Along the planes of a human face, the raven disappears beyond the ridge of the left eye, into a scene of grand calm and flowing beauty. The watch, embodied in the right eye, trails along. And the eye that inhabits the watch is astonished. The face of the mask is about to fold in on itself and reveal everything in one fell swoop.

Just as the paschal moon wakes us up to the sacred celebrations of spring, the full face of Marcus's mask can wake us up to a world beyond imagination that glows as if lit from within.

We might all see something different when we look up at the full moon. I see a woman's face, and she appears to be singing. Some people see a rabbit; some see the man in the moon, some see blue cheese, some see different things in different seasons. The same is true of Marcus's mask. What do you see when you look the mask in the eye? You are welcome to share your thoughts below.