S_V_H Post no. 700 – Bach Prelude 2020 Updated

What the visitor needs to know:

700:This is my 700 blog post. I started documenting this story in early 2010.

Photo 7: The finished update to the music box, Bach Cello Suite No. 1 Prelude, now attached to a framed canvas back support, along with new speaker boxes.

This is the story of a loose canvas 2020 music box project that as it was could not be displayed or played.

Photo 1: This is a still from the video of the original finished artwork attached to another artworks aluminum frame taken in my temporary office studio in Owatonna, Minnesota, the fall of 2020


Photo 2: The artwork, in early 2021, was then sandwiched between heavy cardboard for transportation from Minnesota back to Wisconsin arriving March 1sth 2021, where it was stored until now.
Photo 3: loose wooden pieces that came unattached from the artwork in transit and storage.
Photo 4: Close up showing the aluminum strip that now holds the loose canvas to the framed canvas support.
Photo 5: The finished backside framed canvases bolted together and used as the support for the already attached loose Bach canvas, secured at the top and elsewhere with magnets. (I forgot to take a front image before connecting the canvas to the frame.)
Photo 6: The front image of the finished Bach canvas attached to its canvas frame.

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Bach Prelude music box dated September 2020 updated on 9-22. (updated to final version on 9-23)

Going Deeper:

Photo 7: The original canvas, painted with no support and covered with music glued to its surface, was vulnerable to movement. Any twisting would meet resistance from the stiffer wooden pieces glued to its surface. The resulting strain would cause the separating of the top layer of paint from the canvas that also held the wooded pieces. This occurred for the top painted layer was applied using my experimental scratch off technique. This technique allows me to scrap off a layer of paint to reveal the base colors underneath. Anything attached to such a layer, which was the wooden music, could also as easily lose its support with even minor twisting. To save and allow this music box to be displayable, I had to come up with a way to support the loose canvas from movement when being handled.

Photo 1: When I was painting in this small temporary studio, I did not have the workshop, nor the space in this small studio to put together the aluminum frames and speaker setups I would need for every project. What I did at the time was to build a couple of slightly different sized and adjustable length aluminum frames with small attached music boxes that match with the width of my raw canvas. My three main canvas from that period are this Bach work, Woodstock, and After the Gold Rush. The image below shows an example of that frame from that time. The artwork is Woodstock.

Adjustable aluminum frame used for projects in 2020.

700: The purpose of this blog, from early 2010 to today, is to document this art journey. It was never attended to accomplish anything more than that. I appreciate those who have signed up to follow. To make it easier for the few of you that actually view this site, because I realize everyone is short of time, I am trying to say in as few words as possible what I am doing. I have then offered a deeper read, but that is for me. I am the one interested in what I was thinking and how I have developed as an artist over the years. With luck, and strength of determination, I will continue on to a new goal, 1000 blog entries, now that I past Vincent Van Gogh’s letter total to Theo. I know, and I mean this: The best is yet to come!

Photo 5: The top of the front of the artwork is secured to the framed canvas with 15 no. 8 screws drill through a metal bar what I found at the local Menards hardware store, which is called a S Cleat Duct Fitting. The S part of the bar allows me to slide the artwork canvas up inside and then secure with the screws. On the sides and the bottom I am using, right now, only 4 fairly powerful magnet combinations that are not too noticeable on the front, but secure the artwork to the supporting framed canvas.


Roger's poem:
My younger Brother Roger passed away a year ago this last August. In a tribute to him I wrote a story poem that took months to complete. At his celebration of life, this last June 4th, I read it aloud, with encouragement and support from my family. I believe this poem contains universal relatable moments and meanings about the difficulties of losing someone close to you. It offers an understanding that loss is not about accepting and moving on. Instead, it is a story poem about the choice of moving ahead in Life with them.
(This poem is in fifteen parts or sections and with each new blog post there will be added one additional part. I am currently posting sections 1-9)


Roger’s poem

The sun in winter
is all too short.
Who knew as you move through our lives,
that yours would follow the winter sun.

Winter arrests time
for thought and reflection
that February afternoon.
Dressed for warmth
we venture out,
Into the soft light,
surrounded by stillness,
not an oak leaf stirring. 

The cold of that yesterday
 is heard in the crackling crunch
 of fresh fallen snow, 
 as I straddled previous steps
 along a well-worn path,
 deep into the woods.

Although I think
we are alone,
Zelda knows better,
her actions are telling. 
Life and the deer are about. 
Stopping with her tail up,
head sharply flipping, 
to-and-fro sensing something_, 
I also pause,
feeling a stirring in the air.
With her nose to the snow, 
Zelda looks to turn off the known path, 
to explore another trail, 
far less traveled. 
Her interest, I cannot foresee,
or know where it leads. 

Before I can call her back
to the safe way forward,
Winter freezes my momentum,
with a stinging breeze
across my cheeks,
breaking the silence,
awakening concerns.
Had I dressed warm enough?
I feel and pat
my coat,
all was there.
Then it came to me,
that it was not the cold,
but the wind, returning to me
moments once set
quietly away.
I wondered why on a
cold Winter’s Day
on this made-up path,
at this crossroad
in these common woods, 
this walk halted,
by an unforeseen breeze
sending a shiver
tumbling inside, 
then out into the light.
Why over all my many memories,
did I find this one exposed
from beneath Winter’s blanket_,
a consciousness,
an awareness,
that once_, 
was you? 

But time was fleeting.
I had let pass 
the diminishing forest light
and our late start.
Fearing the coming darkness
will hide this path,
I call Zelda back
to the safe way home. 
For Home is where we want to be. 
What choice have I,
but to be on our way. 
We had to turn back,
for time does not. 
I could only turn away. 

Those moments have passed
this another Winter’s Day,
although the cold
is harder to ignore,
our routine beckons. 
Although she cares less,
I dressed Zelda in a purple coat
and I in my heaviest hooded jacket,
thankful that each new walk
the sun grows nearer,
and longer,
and the return less concerning.  

Along the way
Zelda repeats her many stops,
on our well-walked path. 
And for a distance
all seems as it should,
until the quiet is interrupted
by a strong gust
pressing against my coat,
pausing our step. 
I feel this air’s warmth, 
as I look to see Zelda stopped ahead, 
her ears pushed back 
by the wind, standing at that 
barely a crossroad 
from yesterday. 
Her brown nose twitching 
in this comforting air. 
Although surprised 
to see her at this divide, 
I have a smile of déjà vu, 
by a long-ago line, 
from a well-used book of poetry 
now gathering dust, 
from the poet Robert Frost__, 
“Two roads diverged in a wood…” 
Two roads, 
in a wood. 
that is all I recalled. 
With a sigh and interest 
I pursue 
this other trail upwards, 
to see it following 
the rush of rolling clouds, 
knowing soon these winter paths 
will turn to mud, 
preventing our return, 
until the frozen has left. 
Thus beginning the awakening, 
ending Winter’s parsing of time, 
with days merging all too quickly. 
We will lose ourselves 
to work to be done, 
and unforeseen tasks, 
demands and bills to pay, 
that surely will come. 

Though today 
Winter still decides, 
in the fast blanketing 
approach of low clouds 
bursting with snow 
and ice pellets, 
pirouetting down to us, 
if in an effort 
to hide our way, 
on this favored path. 

sections 1-9 of fifteen.....to be continued.

Scott Von Holzen

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