The Thin Place Inside Of Me

Lisa, Jennifer and Denise, enthralled, as we all were, with the kitten, now known as Miss Ali
Lisa, Jennifer and Denise, in my studio just before the Open House.  Enthralled, as we all were, with the kitten, now known as Miss Ali.

I had two wall hanging, a bunch of potholders and 8 or 9 scarves for sale at the Open House.  When both wall hanging sold and most of the potholders were gone, I decided up hang a wall hanging that I made a while ago and never put up for sale.  I was sure no one would buy it and told Kim so.  She just laughed at me like she knew something I didn’t.

A few hours later a woman walked up to me and said she wanted to buy the wall hanging.  I imagine I had a strange look on my face, mostly because I didn’t really believe her.  Then she told me that she was buying it for her daughter.  Her daughter had some troubles and was now finding herself again and the piece spoke to her of that. She didn’t go into details, but her eyes got red and watery as she talked.  no more words were necessary.  I felt my own eyes tear up and we stood there together understanding without language, both of us wiping our eyes, unembarrassed by our emotion.

This is what the Open House is about for me.  Making connections. And it’s not always so dramatic.   Often it’s just meeting, for the first time, someone whose comments  I’ve been reading on my blog for years.  Or hearing the voice and seeing the face of the artist whose work I’ve admired on facebook.  Sometimes the connection comes when someone buys a piece of art from one of the other artists in the gallery and it’s one I would have bought for myself.  It’s the deepening friendship between Kim and myself as we work side by side in the gallery.

I’ve found that the more open I am, the more honest my work, the easier it is to connect with people.  And it’s not about being best friends.   It’s about finding that one thin place inside of me that reaches out and finds that same thin place inside of someone else.  And although we may have never seen each other before or  will ever see each other again,  in that place, we know each other.  This is always what I’ve wanted my art to be able to do, now I want to be able to do it as well.


22 thoughts on “The Thin Place Inside Of Me

  1. Just beautiful Maria! One day soon I hope to travel to Bedlam Farm to make that connection with you and Jon. Congratulations on another successful open house!

  2. Oh, Maria — I loved this. It’s so powerful when someone is moved by something we create. It was meant to be that you hung the piece. I loved reading about the weekend. Off to Santa Fe on Wednesday. Very excited about this trip!
    Love, Debbie

  3. Beautifully said. Really defined connectedness for me in the creative group. Art does that. For that moment in time you knew each other. Beautiful. Thank you.

  4. Gentle words … And they express your emotion so beautifully. I could see it happening when I was in the studio too. I am so glad you offer all this wonderful art for sale – it is a lovely experience to come and see the things you speak of of your blog, and be able to take a little of the magic home.

  5. This really spoke to me. I have often thought I should not be part of the group as my creativity was different from the others. Through your blog I connected with Karen [Sewing by the seat of my pants]. Turns out she lives in my old neighborhood where I was the most creative and is a huge activist community [I was a videographer and activist for Native rights/issues]. How perfect to connect with her. I had been wondering what to do with my father’s cherished sewing machine which had been in my closet for 10 years after dismantling my mother’s home when she went into a nursing home. I always felt guilty because he was a master tailor and my mom was a seamstress but I did not have their talent [could only do basic things]. I would look at the sewing machine and feel that someone who created beautiful things should have this. I have offered it to Karen and hopefully when winter comes and her weekend events slow down, she will come to pick it up. She was very surprised I was so insistent that she would be the perfect person for it. She even offered to give me sewing lessons so I might keep it. I am so sure that my father will be thrilled when she has the sewing machine and creates things the way that he did. This is an old school sewing machine – he died in 1980 but my mother used it up until 2000. It is a piece of history and now I don’t have to be sad that it sat in my closet. I just did not know what to do with it in 2004 but knew it was too special to just give away without thinking of where it ended up. Thanks to your blog I found the perfect person in Karen. It was nice to meet her at an outdoor event and know she will have multiple sewing machines for her creations now. Thank you for recommending her blog.

    Janet [also go by Anna Mae on facebook]

  6. Maria, whether a creative piece of work is ‘good’ in terms of design or art, the fact is, when it communicates with the heart and mind of those who view it, you know that your creativity has met its goal. A wonderful experience with your guest and your wallhanging. It is what every creative person hopes for, that connection visually and emotionally with others. Thank you for sharing it with your readers.
    Sandy P in Canada

  7. Beautiful! So sorry Roger and I could not get there this weekend. We had been looking forward to it. But, Roger wasn’t doing well this weekend and a long drive was out of the question. We’re both pleased that both open House days went so well and we’re enjoying the photos.

  8. This is a perfect, perfectly said acknowledgment of that “connection” felt sometimes, quite out of the blue. A “thin place” is so illustrative Maria as it speaks to the vulnerability that is where we can most definitely and perfectly greet another who is willing to expose that place to us, even if only for a moment. Lovely testimony.

  9. Maria,
    Wanted so much to come to the Open House. I am fascinated by your use of the term “thin place”. Are you aware of the use “thin place” in the celtic and pre-celtic tradition? A magical, mystical place that becomes a portal to another world- the portal is a thin place between worlds.
    Certainly art does this in the connections it makes between the world of the creator and the one who receives the art (in whatever manner that happens). And while this may not be a traditional interpretation of the term, I love to reimagine it in the way you have used it the thin places between people where the connection happens-beautiful.

  10. I so know this thin place Maria. It is comfortable and warm. The thin place for me is a piece of my soul and when it connects with another it is magic that I will never forget. Thanks for it all Maria :)

  11. Sparkles is just what I was thinking last night! My place is like a maze of glass partitions. They are so clear and pure they sparkle. I see us all at opportune times looking through different walls of glass. Our souls touch and we see each other clearly for a bit! It feels so safe.

  12. Dear Maria,
    How fortunate I am that I met you and Jon and the residents of Bedlam Farm during the Open House. As a textile artist and recipient of some of your pot holders, I have enjoyed your means of expression. However, the wall hanging you created that I bought for my daughter is a treasure that will be a gentle tie between us. So grateful, P

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