Of a Piece | Summer
Mary Oliver, the Pulitzer Prize-winning poet known for her attention to the natural world, died on January 17, 2019, at the age of 83. Her poems have been a companion and inspiration to Anne Appleby as these two artists shared a similar practice in and appreciation of nature.
Although "The Summer Day," one of Mary Oliver's most iconic poems, might be the obvious pairing for Anne Appleby's painting, Summer, Anne suggested sharing the following piece to honor the poet's passing.
I worried a lot. Will the garden grow, will the rivers
flow in the right direction, will the earth turn
as it was taught, and if not how shall
I correct it?
Was I right, was I wrong, will I be forgiven,
can I do better?
Will I ever be able to sing, even the sparrows
can do it and I am, well,
Is my eyesight fading or am I just imagining it,
am I going to get rheumatism,
Finally I saw that worrying had come to nothing.
And gave it up. And took my old body
and went out into the morning
About Anne Appleby
Anne Appleby was born in 1954 in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, and moved to Montana at age 17. She received her Bachelor of Fine Arts in 1977 from the University of Montana and embarked on a 15-year apprenticeship with an Ojibwe elder, learning to patiently and deeply observe nature. Appleby would watch and then translate into color the cycles of leaves, stems, buds, fruit, and seeds, transforming nature’s fluid evolution into two-dimensional portraits.
Appleby received her Master of Fine Arts in 1989 from the San Francisco Art Institute and has since exhibited her painting internationally to high acclaim. She has had solo exhibitions at the Tacoma Art Museum, 2018, the Ulrich Museum of Art at Wichita State University, Kansas, 2011, the Museum Ritter, Waldenbuch, Germany, 2010, and the Boise Art Museum, 2000. In 2007 the artist was featured at the Villa e Collezione Panza, Varese, Italy, which commissioned a permanent major painting installation. Her paintings are in the permanent collections of the Albright-Knox Museum, the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, the National Gallery of Art, the Denver Museum of Art, the Museo d’ARTE Moderna e Contemporea, and numerous other public and private institutions.