Wednesday, December 9, 2009

First Storm of the Season

I remember when I wrote this:  "I am going to post on my back deck until I have to type in mittens....It is Sunday, November 22.  Sunny, about 55 degrees at noon. " 

I woke up this morning to the wind howling in the enormous pines off my back deck and realized that with it getting down to 10 degrees tonight, I ought to take my patio chairs, table and umbrella in the house before the furniture blew away.  Til now, I kept smiling, thinking that I could sit on my lovely deck, talk to the pines, hear the birds, if even just a few more times til the cold really set in.  It is setting in.

It is good to experience the seasons, strong weather, and the realization that we are so much less than these forces.  The Gaia Theory addresses the interconnectedness of all things and all manner of current scientific theories continue to support and expand this.  Originally proposed by James Lovelock as the earth feedback hypothesis, it was named the Gaia Hypothesis after the Greek supreme goddess of Earth. The hypothesis is frequently described as viewing the Earth as a single organism. 

The Gaia theory was developed in the late 1960’s by Dr. James Lovelock, a British Scientist after he worked with NASA on research of life on Mars. Though no life on Mars was determined, Lovelock's research led to profound new insights about life on Earth. His theory was supported by Lynn Margulis, a microbiologist at the University of Massachusetts. Since their early work in the 1970's, many of the mechanisms by which Earth self-regulates have been identified. For example,  cloud formation over the open ocean is almost entirely a function of the metabolism of oceanic algae that emit a large sulfur molecule (as a waste gas) that becomes the condensation nuclei for raindrops. Previously, it was thought that cloud formation over the ocean was a purely chemical/physical phenomenon. The cloud formation not only helps regulate Earth’s temperature, it is an important mechanism by which sulfur is returned to terrestrial ecosystems.

As above, so below.

Today I featured a detail of My Ostraka:  History II:  xix, a 52 x 90 inch painting on canvas.  I had been experimenting with pigment mixtures, especially with intermixing silver acrylics with other pigments.  I let these experimental mixtures on my paining dry overnight, and as different pigments settled, beautiful star-shapes naturally occurred, better than if I had tried to paint them illusionistically.