VISIONS OF HUMBOLDT BAY
My inspiration for The Water’s Edge was Humboldt Bay. A San Francisco Bay Area transplant, I moved here in 1969. Through the years I have lived in Manila, Arcata, and now Eureka, and have viewed our bay from all angles, in all lights. After 39 years, I am still awed by its beauty.
Once I began working as an artist, painting here and in many other states, I became even more impressed with our bay. There are very few waterways remaining in the U.S. with so much natural beauty surrounding them.
There are certain places around the bay, which really stand out for me: The Elk River Estuary, and Indian Island. Throughout a year, the light, shrubs and trees, and the color of the grasses and water change considerably. The changing atmosphere, clouds and moisture around these areas, particularly in late or early light, add to the visual feast. Indian Island in particular feels like a sacred place to me. Its sacred feel also comes from its importance to local Wiyot (Native American) culture, as a site for world renewal ceremonies where blessings of peace and harmony, for all beings and the Earth occur. To evoke a sense of the sacred, I used the iconic shape (as orthodox churches use for displaying likenesses of the saints) to express my sense of the holy about this place.
Humboldt Bay enriches our lives every day. Where else in this country does so much beauty, richness of culture and nature exist in one place? I have thoroughly enjoyed painting these pieces and hope these images remind you of what we have here and encourage all of us to preserve it.