When walking along the East Sands in St Andrews, I often find pieces of beautifully designed broken pottery. I started to collect it and it really spoke to me about the brokenness and beauty of life. The harsh sea softening the sharp edges. These pieces of pottery were once part of something whole but are now shattered into pieces. It speaks to me of humanity and the brokenness of life. In Japanese culture they have something called Kintsugi, it is the artform of repairing broken pottery with pure gold. I love this image of our broken life being held together by something so precious like Gold. Gold to me symbolises God and His divine love and connection with humanity. I often use gold shafts of light or gold leaf to demonstrate God's ability to heal us and repair us and restore us to something greater and more beautiful than before.
Birds and Angels
Birds have the benefit of seeing life from a different perspective. Our feathered friends, can see great distances and help to remind us to try and have a birds eye view on life, rather than focusing on the immediate thing at hand. They remind me of having an eternal perspective. If the sky symbolises the heavens and the celestial/ spiritual connection with God then the birds symbolise having our being, thoughts, minds, emotions set on eternal things, then it can impact our temporal earthly, fragile humanity. The Bible does not say anything about angels having wings but because of artistic misinterpretation or artists throughout history we see angels with wings and now it is hard not to associate wings with angels. I find that using the artistic tool of wings helps the viewer think something is otherworldly and helps them identify an angel. Angels to me are similar symbol to birds. They are connected to unseen world but like the bird they see a different, eternal perspective reminding us to look up and seek an encounter with our Maker.
I think I will have at least 1 more blog post on symbols found in my work and who knows what new ones will spring up this year!