[Buried Treasure] What Ought to Be: On Untangling and Putting Fragments Back Together with Art

June 11, 2013

The treasure hunt begins on 6/12 over at The Altered Page, as participating art bloggers come together to share past posts we love & to collaborate as part of Seth Apter’s Buried Treasure Project. The concept is awesome: Seth will be posting a list of all our posts so we and others can discover lots of artsy online hidden treasure and creative goodness.

I’m re-posting one of my favorite blog posts, What Ought to Be: On Untangling and Putting Fragments Back Together with Art from the Creativity in Motion archives in 2010.  I selected this post because it symbolizes many core beliefs I have about art-making’s ability to create transformation out of moments full of uncertainty and vulnerability.

I also decided to create some updated fragments of me to add to the box…

Fragments of Me: Twentythirteen | What Ought to Be: Untangling and Putting Fragments Back Together w/ Art | creativity in motion
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What Ought to Be: On Untangling and Putting Fragments Back Together with Art | Originally posted on Creativity in Motion: 2/28/2010

Earlier in the week I was reading a post about what daily meditation can do for your creativity and wrote down these words that the author, Mark McGuinness highlighted: Focus, Patience, Calmness, Clarity, Insight, and Perspective with the intention to reflect on the state of my own mental clarity and what McGuinness described perfectly as “getting tangled up in thoughts”.

As the week went on, I lost track of this intention. What did follow was lots of tangling and static coming from many sources and by the end of the week, my mind felt like it was in tight knots unable to make sense of anything or what to do next.  Except for one thing: to make art.  When I am having a hard time understanding what’s happening around me or within, art-making usually helps me start to untangle everything and invite many of the qualities listed in McGuinness’ post.

This past week in particular, I was really thinking about themes related to shattering, fragmenting and scatteredness… feeling this within and wanting to do something constructive and meditative to make these pieces more containable and start to put them back together for my sanity and my ability to keep moving forward with fresh eyes, a clearer head, and creative mind.

I used several square and rectangle plastic “Fragments”  from Tim Holtz’s idea-ology and adhered the words I wrote down from McGuinness’ list and others important to my untangling process.   Holtz’s “Fragments” are small clear tiles that can be embellished by adhering patterned paper to, inking, or gluing on printed paper for creating “a concept or thought developed by the mind of what is desireable or ought to be“.

I also collaged a box to hold and contain these fragments of “what ought to be”.

Developing and containing these fragments through this process reminded me (again) of my core intentions, purpose, and helped “untangle” most of the “thought knots”, as well as put back and contain all the little pieces of me that were scattered everywhere and ought to be paid attention to for continued creativity, energy, and collaboration.

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5 Responses to “[Buried Treasure] What Ought to Be: On Untangling and Putting Fragments Back Together with Art”

  1. Ellie Says:

    Love what you did here, stunning!

  2. Ginny Says:

    Great visual for staying focused! Beautiful.


  3. Visual definition and nurturing. Love it! Happy to visit your Blog. Lovely work…meaningful too.

  4. Donna Says:

    I love what you did here with the words on the fragments. Your box is beautiful!


  5. Gretchen, I just stopped by from Seth’s Buried Treasure project and love the inspiration and tranquil feeling that spills out from your project and what you have written. I think it would be nice if all of us could hold on to this feeling, remember and reflect on positive things like this and I have come away more enriched for having visited you. I also enjoyed visiting the rest of your blog, you have lots of wonderful things here and I have become a follower of your blog through Bloglovin’.
    🙂 Chris / CS Designs


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