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Subscribe to this list via RSS Blog posts tagged in sacred art

Posted by on in SageWoman Blogs

Trees are wisdom keepers. They stand in a single place on the earth’s surface and faithfully witness the unfolding of time. Like people, trees observe their surroundings, root where welcomed, reach toward nourishment, and hold close where limited.  They form scar tissue when wounded and can adapt to change.  Examining the lives of trees offers critical insights for human wellbeing and survival, showing us when life thrives and falters.

“Witness tree” is an expression used for trees that mark boundaries, act as signposts and directionals, or witness key events in history and local culture – celebratory and tragic.  Trees also witness the in-between moments that are precious and informative in their own right. Through this collaborative witnessing of trees and people, we hope to foster a world that is richer and more sustainable for both.

My dear friends Rebecca Power, John Steines, and I partnered over a year ago to create Witness Tree, an art exhibit at Commonwealth Gallery in Madison, WI – with the two of them as artists (along with many others they invited) and me serving as facilitator of group activities and community conversations.  The above is our statement of purpose, and below is a picture of our world tree gallery where we gathered for circles of story, poetry, meditation, conversation, and leaf-making.

b2ap3_thumbnail_panorama.jpg

More recently Rebecca and John joined with other tree-minded artists in a fabulous follow up Tree of Life art exhibit at the Overture Center for the Arts in Madison, WI. Again, my role was to support the artists by facilitating a community conversation at the gallery to draw people into a more intentional experience of the Tree of Life exhibit. To kick of the conversation, we guided participants to reflect on their experience of the art and then to share in single words on slips of paper how the art inspired their personal connection with trees and the Tree of Life as metaphor for the connectivity of all living things.

We then collected the words to create a word cloud as a collective representation of everyone’s experience of the Tree of Life art.  Perhaps you can imagine the diversity of art in the exhibit through this “reverse experience” of viewing the visitor’s words rather than the works of art themselves.

b2ap3_thumbnail_wordcloud_2.jpg

As you view the trees in your home place over the next days and weeks, you might collect your own words of response and create a word cloud as an alternative, or in addition, to a journal. You can create your own word cloud with the tree or other shapes at http://www.tagxedo.com/

In alliance with the trees,
Anne

Credits: Thanks to Math Heinzel for the Witness Tree panorama, Amy Fenn for creating the word cloud, and the many others who contributed to the art exhibits and associated programming.

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  • Irene bryson
    Irene bryson says #
    My name is Irene and I am new to this, don't know how I came across it but have always been interested would love to enter into th
  • Francesca De Grandis
    Francesca De Grandis says #
    Thanks so much for this! Your affirming the witnesses and caretakers of transitions is a healing for me. As a shaman, I often find

Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Sacred Ink

On the weekend of Vancouver Pagan Pride, one of my tradition sisters offered to touch up my new sacred tattoo that I had received about six weeks prior.  "It's really great for someone who was new, and her lines are excellent," she said, "but it's fading a little already and I want to dress it up a little, if that's okay with you."

My spirit-sister Jennica had done the tattoo - a triple moon with a blue pentagram in the center of the full one - in a cast circle as part of sacred ceremony.  It was my first tattoo ever and that meant a lot to me.  I had insisted upon this because I had been told the story of how my initiator Lord Redleaf had received the Green Man tattoo on his chest as part of ritual in a cast circle and it moved me.  I told my trad sister Amity Loyce this and let her know that it was very important to me that it remain sacred, and still done in a cast circle and empowered.  "Sure, that's fine," she said with a nod.  "I don't have any problems doing that!  I always wanted to tattoo in a cast circle . . ."

The next thing we knew, we had a tattoo party planned for the following evening.  Amity and her partner Mick would come over to the place I was staying at and we would cast circle and do the tattoo as part of ritual.  Furthermore, my husband and Priest Erin Righ, and my lover and Priest Redleaf, decided that they would get matching tattoos representing their 3rd Degree in our tradition, Star Sapphire Wicca, representing the degree and the Horned God.  Redleaf's wife and Priestess Dolphanie would conduct the ceremony on our behalf.

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Recent Comments - Show all comments
  • Jamie
    Jamie says #
    They're very nicely done! Thanks for sharing.
  • Rebecca Buchanan
    Rebecca Buchanan says #
    *This* is awesome. Sacred tattoos done during ritual are a wonderful idea. I'll have to keep this in mind for my next tattoo in h

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