Collection: Laurie Heller Marcus | Rochester Blues

November 17, 2022 – January 7, 2023
Since June, I have been traveling around the northeast living in short-term rentals, Air B & B’s, and visiting family and friends. Through this peripatetic lifestyle, I have come to see how my visual surroundings affect my work, which is based mainly on imagination and memory. 
This first series of works on paper, my Rochester Blues, came from the first place I visited. The imagery emerged in different hues of blue. The juxtaposition of different blues became the subject as well as the light, mark, and form. The narratives flowed in sixteen related but separate images. The work continues in Portland, Naples, Maine, Nantucket, Tuckahoe, Boston, Olivebridge, Saugerties, NY, and now NYC. 
The light and architecture in each place call for a different palette and brushstroke, each location exciting different thoughts, narratives, and memories. My response to each new environment finds its way into my work through the filter of my imagination. 

(for Rochester)
My memory                                         
overrode vision, even truth, to build a
structure of scars to hold my heart
There was a cobalt dream, dark and distinct, 
now distant, guiding me through 
the brittle pages of childhood
to find the banded Sphinx, annoyed 
she sends me back through the glaucous night 
to the sister-bricks whose relentless arguing 
streaks the air as the miracle of a white fire burns, 
I receive no help from my angel
who sits hatching her dome, an opal egg eclipsing
the steel gray sky, skewered by a cross
I come upon an observatory encapsulated 
in a stormy spread, seeking safety will I be trapped?
Like a firefly dreading a jar, I climb and climb
creating my own intermittent luminescence 
from behind
I follow the thread to its inevitable end
only to find a non-negotiable gap between the world 
and my mind which asks ultramarine questions,
returning cerulean answers echoing:
the pilgrimage is more about leaving than arriving
I paint my way home into the willowy world, 
with three snakes forever tattooed into my heart-
I speak through flowers but still I’m a stranger
–Laurie Heller Marcus


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