Carol Alleman - Celestial Joy
- Medium: Bronze
- Edition: 36
- Size: 20.5'' x 14''
2017 Marilyn Newmark Foundation Award for Best Sculpture Done in an Academic Manner, American Women Artists Master/Signature Exhibition, Tucson Desert Art Museum, Tucson AZ. 2015 Green & Gray Exhibition, Tempe Center for the Arts, Tempe AZ. 2014 Four Points Contemporary BiAnnual Juried Competition; MERIT AWARD.
"Celestial Joy invites us to witness and join the hummingbird's dance of joyfully giving, receiving, perching [resting] and trusting. Coupled with the peaceful purity of the orange alpine lily, the vessel glows with a delicate, wide open invitation to live in complete celestial joy, peace, love and trust. Celestial Joy was born with the union of the delightful, flame colored, wild alpine lily and the female, black-chinned hummingbird.
Commissioned by a couple living in the Lake Tahoe area, the orange alpine lily was a perfect choice for their classically shaped vessel. One of the most frequent and beloved visitors of these lordly lilies of the Tahoe area, is the black-chinned hummingbird. The small trumpet shaped lily was of particular [sculpting] challenge with its slim upper foliage and tall, lengthy stems. The large volume of negative space was inevitable given its tall, delicate nature. Lilies are symbolic of purity, peace and fertility of the earth.
The marriage of the lilies with the hummingbird was indeed a magical one. The hummingbird is known by many to be a mystical bird of wonder and highest skill. It swiftly sips nectar and pollinates the wild alpine lily (among other blooms), both giving and receiving. It is symbolic of joyful loving. The hummingbird has the largest relative known heart size of any bird. Is 'heart space', or center of love, is approximately 2.4 percent of their body weight. Uniting this beautiful symbol of peace and purity (lily) with a great carrier of Love (the hummingbird) felt perfect. There is perhaps no better way to create peace and purity than through joyful Love. I reflected on the natural beauty of the peaceful wild lily.
So often I get distracted with what I shall wear beyond a practical degree. The lily of the field reminds me that my most worthy garb always is the mystical spirit I allow to purely envelope me and radiate around me no matter what my physical garb. There is nothing wrong with wearing quite beautiful clothing, except to the level of distraction from our own inherent, mystical, natural beauty. We need not worry about what to wear, to eat, or to do the wild lily reminds me. The pure beauty of these lordly blooms nudges me to trust in all ways trust that everything is indeed perfectly created.
Similarly, the hummingbird instills a sense of utter trust. Her remarkable ability to fly vast distances to migrate is beyond astounding. Some of these tiny birds fly over 2,000 miles twice a year to migrate! The gracious hummingbird inspires us to release the illusions of limitation and trust all possibility that we too can indeed attain, through trust, what may appear unattainable and fly [grow] to vast distances. For me, the beautiful, angelic hummingbird has long felt symbolic of the incessant joyful lover. She tirelessly nourishes the blooms as she pollinates, then quietly perches and watches. She dances this generous, innate pattern of giving, receiving, and resting, inviting us to notice her love dance, to join her dance.
The hummingbird's wild quality of being fiercely independent (at times even aggressively so) brought to mind our human, independent choice to use our minds and actions however we choose - to promote love or its opposite. When hovering, her wings create the pattern of the figure eight, the symbol of infinity. This habit invites me to choose to turn to the infinity of Truth, nourishing the divine spiritual Truths in and around me while trusting they indeed are infinite Truths. It reminds me of the truth that some things are indeed infinite while beyond our full understanding.
Loving to perch, the hummingbird quietly watches with her excellent vision. She awakens in me the call to use my quiet, meditative [perch] time to see more clearly and to turn toward loving reflective peacefulness; remembering the vast gifts of utter rest. Celestial Joy stands 20.5" tall (14" wide), with 12 stems of wild orange alpine lilies, and 3 female, black-chinned hummingbirds.
The female hummingbird was chosen to represent the importance of the feminine energies currently being birthed in new ways in our world. The edition size is 36 (3 x 12). This symbolizes the divine trinity of 3 coupled with a highly tribal number (12) of humanity or the cosmos, while mirroring the 12 stems of lilies and the 3 hummingbirds on the vessel. The edition size is also intended to be symbolic of completion (the number 9 as with 3 +6). To some, the number 12 also represents a number of completion.
The companion poetry of Celestial Joy is 9 stanzas, with 4 lines in each stanza equaling 36. I, as well as, many teachers and leaders believe we are nearing the end (completing) of a huge phase of humanity while growing into (hopefully) a very new, higher and peaceful level of conscious living. The energetic joyful loving of the hummingbird is symbolic of the chosen divine attributes for this transition time on our journey - the attribute companions of joy, love, mutuality and trust. She invites all of us to choose, and to trust joyful loving and peaceful living."