Nestled in a high sierra valley, at the foot of Mt. Ashland is the town of Ashland, Oregon. Home of the Oregon Shakespeare Festival, Lithia Park, and the nearby vineyards and chocolatiers of the Willamette Valley, it is also renowned for its crisp mountain stream and natural sulpher springs, which have been hailed as the “Fountain of Youth”.
To my knowledge, the sulfur springs of Lithia Park are no longer available to drink from in the town square fountain, but when I visited as a child, the fountain did flow, and I drank from it. It tasted like rotten eggs, but its effects were true. I was enchanted with never ending youth and the longing to return to this place year after year.
As an adult, I return with my husband for short reclusive getaways to relax, stroll the park and shops, and take in the theater. In the winter we drink coffee with the local elders before a leisurely day on the friendly slopes of Mt. Ashland. On one such trip in 2008, we awoke on Christmas morning to find a soft light powder of snow had fallen in the town.
For a few hours we padded about, wallowing in the quiet moments as the new day began. The paintings that followed seemed to integrate nature, architecture and light, with the hint of man only visible in footprints, tire tracks and the statues that govern the place.
The paintings of this series are the results of that morning and the quiet tranquility of the town in winter. Link to Ashland Series.
SNIPPETS FROM MY ART LIFE.