“…Virginia said, ‘Mimi Chen Ting’s oil monotype, …arrested my roving mind and held it as sure as if she held my head still in her hands.’”
Rick Romancito, The Taos News Tempo
I was born into a household with three women who had bound feet: Great Grandmother, Grandmother and Sixth Great Aunt. We lived together in an old house in Shanghai with a garret where all the children slept. One of my earliest memories was reaching into the secret jar from which all sweetness flowed, to pick out my own bar of brown sugar. Another was my stepping onto the sill of an open window, a cool wind on my face; I reached toward the patch of blue-grey sky, willing to fly. Voices behind me screamed, “No! Stop! Do not move!”
Those words became the mantra for most of my upbringing. They were to prevent me from being struck by whatever misfortune might be waiting in ambush. In order to not get into trouble, I became adept at being still, and learned to thrive in stealth and silence. Imagination was my window for escape…
When I draw and paint, I am that child from long ago, filled with wonder, unbound by gravity. Driven by curiosity to churn stillness into motion, and forge action upon the static, everything, mundane or esoteric, can become a trigger. When colors and contours engage dynamically and emphatically, they crystallize life’s elusive meanings and transitory moments, inviting empathy and harmony. This is liberating and restorative work, and I am happy to answer its call.
A persistent feeling of sublime urgency makes doing this work impossible to resist. On this seemingly arduous venture, I am honored to be among many who are skilled in the art of tenacious acceptance… We just lean into the wind and keep on trucking.