Tuesday, July 24, 2012


Excerpt from a draft scene  in "Clarity" between sculptor Helen Rice, 67, and potter Anna Pietersen, 63, their growing relationship a parallel theme in the novel:

Helen Rice guided Anna Pietersen into the Benwood Art Museum in Oquaga City, under the logo “BAM!” on a blue banner hung above the windowed entranceway.  
“We’ll see where they positioned my scarecrow sculpture and later look at ‘Still Life’,” she said. “‘Still Life’ is really a joke; I was surprised they added it to their regional collection. You’ll see why. It refers to a practice by people in the U.S. who made a home brew known as ‘moonshine’ and ‘white lightning’.”
“I know a little about that. Our jajem has a similar tradition, but it is made from malt rather than corn.”
Rice waved a greeting at the desk attendant and entered the main hall, architecturally lighted from broad slanted and vertical windows that faced the Susquehanna River, light that reflected off brushed steel and aluminum walls interspersed with light oak irregular panels. Her sculpture, titled “Scarecrow Threat,” was set so it greeted visitors to the museum’s interior sculpture gallery.
“That’s satisfying,” Rice said, smiling, hers and Pietersen’s arms interlocked as they strolled.
“It must be,” Pietersen grinned.
“Sandra has a work here, too, a small Claes Oldenburg styled work called ‘Collapse,’ stuffed white vinyl arranged in a way that makes a viewer feel as if might fall.”
“Very funny. Tell me more about ‘Scarecrow'."

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