In the fall of 2018, my husband and I were gifted, by Richard Donovan, with the opportunity to run a marathon on the continent of Antarctica. We were elated! We found ourselves in the company of the most extraordinary inspiring humans.
Our trip was filled with more adventure than we prepared for. We discovered not only the beauty and serenity of this awe-inspiring landscape, but that in the souls of others. Athletes with seemingly limitless dreams for themselves; each an inspiration, each generous, welcoming and encouraging.
My mind’s eye overloaded me with explosive visual images. I wanted others to see what I saw, to be blessed by the tenacious spirit, drive and determination of this collective talent.
I have painted, sculpted and experimented using a variety of mediums to tell the stories of these remarkable athletes. Much of this collection has been accomplished solely by my hands, but I am not shy to ask for help when help is needed.
This was a rather large undertaking and I had some pretty incredible images which I was determined to bring to fruition...images that would require the expertise outside of my current skill level. Fortunately, I know peoples. Artistic peoples who readily agreed to help me with my dream to create this collection. Who understood the need for this collection. Who felt the same as I did and wanted to give the community at the large the message that if you dream it, and believe it, you CAN achieve it!
"Antarctica has this mythic weight. It resides in the collective unconscious of so many people, and it makes this huge impact; just like outer space. It's like going to the moon." ~ Jon Krakauer
My husand Ray was my sighted guide on Antarctica
(for the record: I am proud of myself and the 6.2 miles I ran of the 26.2 mile marathon course. It is not always in the crossing of a finish line do I find where my strength lies, but in giving my everything to something I fear.)
Finding words to describe my experience on this continent with all these incredible, amazing humans escapes me...so I did what came naturally, I painted!
To help viewers feel the enormity of the landscape, I opted to combine two canvases. The colorful specs represent us runners doing our best to run in the whiteout blizzard-like conditions. The Ellsworth Mountain range...specifically Mount Vinson, provided the backdrop for the race and this painting.
The name of this painting was partly inspired by a book written by David Grann titled: The White Darkness. It is a true adventure story of Henry Worsley‘s attempt to trek on foot across Antarctica; a journey once attempted by his idol Ernest Shackleton. He describes himself as ‘a speck in the white darkness.’
I am beyond thankful for the yeses of these amazing creatives who agreed to help me bring to fruition the images which visited me in my dreams. images to honor the athletes I ran alongside on the cold, desolate continent ---
Images which I hope tell their stories and will inspire others to dream big
and beyond their existing or 'perceived' boundaries.
Again, I am enormously grateful for these artists and special contributors for giving of their time and talent so that together we can share the message of
hope, confidence and possibilities