Corona Queen stands ever so slightly off-center behind a crumbling stone wall peering over so her head and most of her face show. She’s wearing a bright pink face mask to cover her nose and mouth. She stares straight at the viewer. Her eyes are a mix of concern and confidence. Around her head is a yellow crown outlined in red. Above her, a tree’s broad canopy stretches in colors of fall, rusty orange with stains of green in the leaves and ruddy brown bark. The tree’s trunk frames the Right side of the picture. The sky of angled blue and yellow behind her is a mixture of sun and cloud. The foreground is a field of brightly blooming flowers in sunny spring colors where the wall is crumbling on the right near the tree trunk crossed with a slash of snow-white on the left side of the picture. A single leaf drawn on a slip of orange fabric has fallen to rest at the foot of the wall near where the wall has begun to crumble.
- Size: 11.5 inches x 11 inches (29 cm x 28 cm)
- Materials: cotton fabrics, cotton and cotton-covered polyester thread, embroidery floss
- Created: July 2020
- Series: NA
- Current Location: Private Collection, NFS
My Thoughts on the Work
This Mini-challenge was designed to help Valley South SAQA members who are feeling down about their artwork or lack thereof during the early months of the 2020 Pandemic known as COVID-19 or Coronavirus. Kristiann Bonn put the challenge forth to inspire all of us to get creating as an avenue toward self-care. She choose a John O’Donahue poem entitled “This is the Time to Be Slow” from his To Bless the Space Between Us collection.
I resisted the idea of using a poem or any writing to inform my work in this challenge…and then I gave in to the energy of it and stopped fighting it. That was when the imagery and ideas began to flow.
In working with this imagery, I wanted to express the chaotic aspect of this time in our lives. I set the Corona Queen ever so slightly off center, so her left ear is technically centered, to communicate the idea that this pandemic is quite human-centered. I wanted to call attention to the distinct yet subtle discomfort I feel with the role we play in it. Corona Queen’s crown symbolizes both the Corona Virus and the power we have used to create this reality. When looking at the piece attention is pulled from the other elements in the piece back to her face, yet resting on her face isn’t comfortable either because the top of her left ear is where your eye finds peace. I used elements of each season to communicate the feeling that the natural world is in chaos; the mix of elements: spring, winter, and fall; clouds and sunshine; describes the mix of emotions I’ve experienced in a single day, often day after day. Like Corona Queen peers over the crumbling wall directly into the viewer’s world, which will eventually be her future, I’m watching many of the structures of our culture that were built in past eras crumbling. I find myself peering past them with both concern and courage, thrilled at what’s on the other side yet feeling grief for that is melting away.