Roberta Pyx Sutherland

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Pyx arrived on Hornby Island in 1993. She says: “Maybe having a studio on Hornby makes landscape immersion inevitable. The island offers an environment of such intense beauty. There are few distractions here, other than the remarkable people.”

While observing lichen in the beautiful Lake Country of Britain in1978 I had a deep realization. The truth is: all things are connected and part of one living whole. With complete clarity I understood we are as cells of one body, existing in unity. The intention of my work ever since has been to make this interconnectedness visible.

I soon began to find what appeared as repeated visual evidence that many ancient cultures also understood that all of life was one interconnected continuum. The evidence I refer to is found in much of prehistoric art where the depiction of repeated motifs form continuing circular patterns. These patterns link and employ the circle, labyrinth, arc and spiral. There are numerous examples that this was a common theme in Paleolithic, Neolithic, and early Bronze Age drawings and artifacts. I found it particularly apparent in the great spirals of Malta, Carnac France, and New Grange, Ireland.

We do not need to involve ourselves in the complexities of art history to consider the ramifications of this ancient realization.

History is a great mirror. Are their implications for our current situation? Are there possibilities we could gain contemporary insights by grasping the experience of the shared being-ness that the ancient circles seem to imply?

Quantum physics is postulating we are in fact all one entangled, inextricably connected field. Perhaps this visual legacy of ancestral wisdom can somehow assist us, bolster us, as we struggle to inform ourselves of the radical implications of our complete oneness as implied by the quantum world?

In my current work the spontaneous gesture of a circle is created again and again without erasure following the rhythm of the breath.

I witness unintentional patterns appear within seeming randomness. A quantum explanation for this ordering may be coming clear. Until recently I was sure these large ink drawings, were connected to previous Zen practice, which related them completely, and only to the present moment without reference to past or future. Yet paradoxically they may simultaneously refer to both.