Tuesday, April 17, 2012
the divided heart - art and motherhood
On waking we left the car in the shade and wandered into town for no particular reason. The bookshop seemed a good place to start our meandering. As River made his way to the display of children's books I scanned the covers of the latest non-fiction titles and staring back at me from the top shelf was my balm for that difficult day: Rachel Power's book The Divided Heart - Art and Motherhood. Bound between two beautifully designed covers Rachel shares the honest words of 26 Australian women who are mothers and artists, whose stories I and many others could easily relate to. The interviews capture so well the feeling of mothers loving their children so deeply and simultaneously yearning for space of heart, head and hands to delve into their art form.
Finding this book made everything ok again that day. Not because a vast stretch of time became mine to ponder and write, no. Because reading the book transported me into the hearts and homes of artists whose work I had long admired and introduced me to ones I hadn't heard of, and because whether your art form is photography, painting, composing music or being at home creating a garden or a meal, all mothers have yearnings beyond caring for their children and it is heartening to read others experiences.
Many of you may already know and love this book, but I wasn't blogging in 2008 when it was first published and it is too good so I had to share it now.
Rachel also blogs about 'art, motherhood and everything in between' at The Rachel Papers. You can buy The Divided Heart on her blog. Seek it out.