Saturday, April 9, 2011

Plant and Painting Share Common Roots

Amaranth, ©2011, Hannah Hunter, Collage (paper, fabric and watercolor on panel)
Amaranth. I was walking up the stairs to my studio, trying to come up with a name for a panel I'd just finished and this name came into my head. Curious to see what it meant, I looked it up.

Here's what I found: Amaranthus, collectively known as amaranth, is a wide ranging genus of herbs. The root of the word comes from the Greek, "amarantos," or "unfading" and it combined, sometime in the word's history, with the the Greek work for flower, "anthos."

 A small purple flower, Amaranth provides a sturdy source of nutrition and serves to support sustainable land care in Africa. 

Unfading flower. I like that. At in this time in the world, when so much seems unsure in so many countries, the world, at least my world, needs some reassurance about those things that do not fade.

Amaranth, the flower
I think about the children with whom I work. Day after day this week, I ran my eyes down the census to see if anything had changed; a chance for a miracle cure. No, there were still too many children whose diagnoses were grim. (Isn't one too many?) I wanted to push against this--to create a moment of fun, a small space for healing. Although I am not a doctor or a nurse, I am an artist and the healing I can offer is moments of relief, spaces for joy, a dose of hope.

Into this space comes what does not fade: art, prayer, laughter and love. Amaranth.


  1. Gorgeously written, as always. I will keep these thoughts in my heart today. Thank you for sharing such a lovely idea.

  2. gratitude for the enduring grace of art, prayer, laughter and love and Amaranth;-)

  3. Thank you Claudine and Patty and Altoon. I like the challenge of finding words to talk about the images I create. I'm always struck dumb at first and then after a period of waiting, the ideas seem to emerge.

    Laura--Like the notion of "enduring grace" as applied to art...I hadn't put those two energies together in this way before so thank you:)

  4. I love this lovely piece and its title story.

    Here! Here! What a grand unfolding and sweet sensitive statement regarding the healing quality of art

  5. Yes--this was a tough post to write because I was feeling the impending loss and I needed to pull something, anything, that was positive out of it. Thank you:)