Chiarina Loggia

A printmaker's progress

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Collected Resonance

Fragile, detail

A little over a month ago I was offered a reading role in a local performance of The Vagina Monologues on March 31st. I knew little about the monologues and its parent organization, V-Day, but I was excited at the prospect of doing this performance piece in front of a live audience.  I have since learned about the tremendous effort that V-day exerts to end violence against women, with the monologues being performed internationally in support of local anti-violence organizations.

As a lead-up to the monologues and to assist with the fundraising, I organized an evening of art and poetry at my studio last Friday evening. It was well attended, money was raised through donations and purchase of artwork, and much fun and joy was shared by all. Most amazingly a number of collective poems were written that somehow flowed beautifully despite each person being able to see only a few words of one other person’s contributions. Here are the poems, in the order that they were created.

Crackle, spark, bang, stumble
shine, catch, resonate, echo
with me, with them, all of us to play
in the sun, in the rain,
running up bear mountain is a pain
rolling down again is even worse,
But no matter, just pick yourself up and carry on
you never know if there will be another dawn.
For the zombie horde is pounding at the door
with this moment all has changed- Know this!
I command you! there is no way out to a better end.
A witch’s potion with bats wings and pigs toes to soothe the heart

In the forest so daunting, so deep
grows a vineyard of succulent grapes
that taste like rainbows dipped
in cotton candy, soft and sugary, sticks to all
it touches. With it’s fingers and toes with
the softness of a
kittens paws perched on my leg in a tentative
greeting, tears start flowing like a winter river
taking all the credit
so much to feel, so much to give.
I am colour and light that moves across the canvas
Just as the water flows to the sea, so, do
we drift in and out of the pillow of grey matter.

Love is what we want it to be
How many ways to express
the fullness of my heart, so much longing to touch
gently breathe. Nothing, everything, matter dissolves
Boundaries fluctuate and breathing stops
for a moment. But, really, eternal
love is careful attention to the details, the tiny, infinitesimally small
details of a simple life with simple lust and luscious lips
Let me lead and show you the way
to happiness. For love is a verb, a prayer, a
waking dream in a meadow bathed in sun
full of vibrance

For the final poem we were given the theme of love to write about and it was a wonderful counterpoint to the powerful reading of Eve Ensler’s impassioned piece, Over It.

Thank you to all who came and shared their beautiful artwork and poetry, to Jane, Wayne and Detlef who helped organize and set up for the event, to those who purchased art and helped raise over $300 for our benefit organization, Pacific family Services Centre, and to Neely and Jen, our tireless organizers of V-Day Langford.

The Vagina Monologues

March 31, doors open 6pm for silent auction, show starts at 7pm

Isabelle Reader Theate

1026 Goldstream Avenue, Langford, BC

(250) 474-5967



An Artwork And Its Evolving Story

I love to tell stories with my art. But like Bastian in The Neverending Story, my art enjoins the viewer to use his imagination and life experience to bring the stories to life.  And, while different viewers will find their own stories in the work, so might the same viewer over time, including myself.

Blue Ice, photopolymer gravure etching

A little over a year ago I created the above print from a photograph I took of a man very dear to me. At the time I wanted the focus to be on his piercing blue eyes and the story of his life and character that could be gleaned through them. So I asked him to cover his mouth with his hand to both draw the attention to his eyes and to affect a pose that was both thoughtful and a little guarded. In my own reading of the image, I saw the man not only for who he was but how we related to each other at the time.

Today this print tells a different story to me. The man has recently completed a gruelling round of chemo and radiation therapy to battle the oral cancer he has developed. He is slowly recovering but his life has been thrown into disarray and he is on unchartered ground.

When I look at the print now I see past the eyes to his hand over his mouth and that pose has acquired new meaning to me. I see a protective stance and a strength that overlays the weakness. I see a strong man who will soon come face to face with his fragility and find fortitude in letting go and trusting in his own courage to not be undone by this ordeal. I see a man comfortable in his skin and in his life who will not be overcome by the fear and dread that inevitably come with a life threatening event. His strength allays my own fears and fills my heart with love and admiration for him.

I marvel at the perception and premonition that lead me to request this pose, to create the piece and to title it “Blue Ice”. It is a testament to the creative force within us that, when allowed to flow, is a constant wonder and an extraordinary joy and beauty. I am in awe of that force, and feel both humbled and empowered by it. Most of all I am grateful to be able to produce artworks that generate collective and evolving stories with their viewers, including myself.

This post is dedicated to Ron, for his brilliant smile and courage as he continues along this challenging journey.