January 6, 2019

Altered Altar

This is the floor of my studio, right now. Yesterday, with the solar eclipse and new moon as motivators, I decided to get started on making an altar.

An altar. FULL STOP. I couldn't have contemplated such a thing or even said such a word a couple of years ago without a full body cringe of squiggy discomfort. An altar? Me? In my home? What? Since then I've read a lot, thought a lot, questioned a lot, worked a lot, stretched a lot, relinquished a lot, embraced a lot, and changed a lot, as one does.

My altar is not an altar of or to any religious faith (although it will contain a Ganesha figurine and possibly a Buddha head), it's more accurately a display or vignette of items that hold personal significance to me. My altar will serve as a personal touchstone, with elements of beauty and symbols that encourage and remind me of how and who I am and want to be.
This gorgeous, aged, chipped, carved wood frame will become the container, the altar, for my rotating collection of objects and symbols. I've had the frame for years, but haven't before now figured out how to use it or display it. The flat interior edges (the rabbet) are two and half inches deep. Perfect, I think, as a little shelf for special, little objects.

I'm going to add a shelf midway-ish up the height of the frame. And since I have no way to determine just what is in the paint and finishes that remain adhered to it, I'm going to gently clean and then seal the surface with polyurethane. It pains me to do something that isn't reversible, but I'd rather have any potential carcinogens and lung irritants safely sealed in place.
This is such a magnificent frame. I am over the moon with happiness that it will finally adorn my wall and serve a purpose other than just looking really friggin' cool. Creating an altar feels like an apt way to begin the new year. It will certainly include elements of my word for 2019, spaciousness. Sorry for the abrupt ending, I'm out of practice writing posts. . .

No comments:

Post a Comment