Ricardo C. Rivera
Knight Campus Art Gallery
Everybody likes to show pictures of their vacations and adventures. Cameras capture the external ones with remarkable fidelity. But what of our inner adventures? So far cameras can't go there.
Since 2011, I've been developing a way to make wall hangings of my inner adventures. My stories come from Internal Family Systems sessions that allow me, with the help of my guide, Joanne Gaffney, to go inside and find some internal parts of myself. We learn about their perceptions of their worlds and the burdens they carry. Then we unburden them and help them reintegrate into my life.
We’ve met some great characters – ancient characters, one who shakes me to wake me, another who wants to keep me safe in a 5” sarcophagus, story book characters like Rumpelstiltskin, and the goose that lays golden eggs, mythical characters like Odin the Norse God, and Chinese dragons, personal helpers like Party Sprit and Tiger Lilly, a power flower.
Just as our ideas of our outer adventures such as family vacations unfold over time and what we find meaningful in retelling them may change, I find that my inner adventures unfold as I create the collage in big cloth wall hangings. Starting from a monthly Internal Family Systems session I begin creating the scene. I pin the pieces of cloth onto rug backing that hangs from a rod on the wall. We go from there. Sometimes the story leads, sometimes the composition leads, sometimes the colors lead. It‘s a great co- creative process. The sessions and the art keep working on me as I work on them.
Just like it’s fun to compare our outer vacations in, for example the Grand Canyon, it’s also fun to discuss our inner vacations. Hopefully some of these wall hangings will be a jumping off point for such discussions. -Andy Pritchard, 2016
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