02 June 2008
Three Prophets. Now What?
The title of this triptych has evolved into "Three Prophets." Here's a composite of the three prints, none of the shots well-lit or well-taken but it shows how they all look together. Tomorrow I'm taking them to my favorite local photographer, Stephen Petegorsky, to have proper photos taken.
It was only my love of this concept that got me through the making of these prints. The carving on these was grueling. I didn't keep careful track, but I would guess that I spent at least 80 hours (probably more) just on carving for each print. The whole thing from start to finish took nearly 8 months, a huge commitment for me. I think that I may sell a few of them individually, but for the most part I want to sell them as a set. I think they work best that way.
One of the things I was curious about at the beginning of this project was what, if anything, each geography might reveal about the religion that was born there. I did find some resonances. The watery/wind-like shapes of the land around Bethlehem reminds me of Christianity's mysterious Holy Spirit; Mecca's roads leading to the city center emphasize the role of pilgrimage in Islam; and the perfect rectangle of the garden in Nepal where Buddha is said to have been born echoes the promise of enlightenment. I'm very happy with these prints, and one set will have a place of honor on my living room wall.
Well, over the next couple of days I'm going to be using moku hanga for a commercial client for the first time. Part of the work will be digital, too, but the basis of it will be a print-- a map for Wall Street Journal Asia. I'll show it to you after it goes to print in mid-June.
And after that I have a new series of map-based prints in the planning stages that I'll be working on over the summer. There might be four or six prints in this upcoming series, I'm not sure yet.