Ellen Siebers, White Poppy, 2021, oil on shaped birch panel, 10 x 10 inches.

Ellen Siebers: In The Family of Things

February 05, 2021 February 13, 2021

Excerpt #54 in​ Bluets​ by Maggie Nelson:

Long before either wave or particle, some (Pythagoras, Euclid, Hipparchus) thought that our eyes emitted some kind of substance that illuminated, or “felt”, what we saw. (Aristotle pointed out that this hypothesis runs into trouble at night, as objects become invisible despite the eyes’ purported power.) Others, like Epicurus, proposed the inverse—that objects themselves project a kind of ray that reaches out toward the eye, as if they were looking at us (and surely come of them are). Plato split the difference, and postulated that a “visual fire” burns between our eyes and that which they behold. This still seems fair enough.

Wild Geese​ by Mary Oliver:

You do not have to be good.
You do not have to walk on your knees
For a hundred miles through the desert, repenting.
You only have to let the soft animal of your body love what it loves.
Tell me about your despair, yours, and I will tell you mine.
Meanwhile the world goes on.
Meanwhile the sun and the clear pebbles of the rain are moving across the landscapes,
over the prairies and the deep trees,
the mountains and the rivers.
Meanwhile the wild geese, high in the clean blue air, are heading home again.
Whoever you are, no matter how lonely,
the world offers itself to your imagination,
calls to you like the wild geese, harsh and exciting - over and
over announcing your place
in the family of things.

Excerpt from T​he Summer Day​ by Mary Oliver:

I do know how to pay attention, how to fall down into the grass,
how to kneel in the grass,
how to be idle and blessed, how to stroll through the fields
which is what I have been doing all day.

Ellen Siebers is a painter based in Hudson, NY. Siebers was born and raised in Wisconsin. She received her MFA from the University of Iowa and her BFA from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Siebers has had recent exhibitions at Frosch & Portmann (New York, NY), Sardine (Brooklyn, NY), Proto Gallery (Hoboken, NJ), Big Medium (Austin, TX), The Provincial (MI), Deanna Evans Projects (Brooklyn, NY), FJORD Gallery (Philadelphia, PA), Collective 131 (Brooklyn, NY), and Peep Projects (Philadelphia, PA).

Ellen Siebers, Moonset, 2021, oil on shaped birch panel, 11 x 11 inches.