When asked me to write an artist statement for the sculpture, I said yes without blinking an eye.My understanding was, I would go through the genesis of the sculpture in explaining the experience of my journey while carving the flesh of the wood.
The reality we foresee this day is difficult to explain because the work is based on a strong feeling of faith.From the conception to the finished artwork, I tried to capture a moment in its eternity.Theartist in me created something that she does not fully comprehend.The sculpture is the fruit of the changing seasons of my roots from soils of many cultures.It is also a strong belief in the divine rather than a proof in itself.I am just an instrument in His hands.This being said, I consider it is more important for the artwork to speak for itself without intervention or explanation.
Ideally, a two-way avenue of communication flows between the Creator and the viewer allowing his mind to wander in prayer.The visible is something different for everyone.While my explanation can be useful to the viewer for exploration and consideration, it can also limit or constrict the possible responses.
On July 13, Marika completed The Ascetic her newest sculpture. The markings on the face of the monk are natural. At times you follow the will of the wood and allow it to tell the story. The sculpture is pecan wood. With the base, the dimensions are H 27″ W 8″ D 8″.
From the beginning, the creation of the sculpture revolved around the question “Who is to hold the cross?” We tend to see the death of Jesus through Michelangelo’s Pieta, the portrayal of Mary, the mother, holding the lifeless body of her Son. But in the reality of this journey, we are closer to the weaknesses of Mary Magdalene than to the holiness of the Mother of Jesus.
The Guadalupe Regional Medical Center chose St. Brigid’s Cross for the chapel feeling that any chaplain would do well to model their ministry after the life of St. Brigid. Much like St. Brigid, the chaplain often finds that the most sacred “chapel” is at the bedside of the sick and dying. In those holy moments it is always the chaplain’s desire to bring love, peace and comfort through prayer and faith. In the manner of St. Brigid, Chaplains often share God’s love by reaching out to the poor, to those in need and to those whose hearts are hurting.
Cross of St. Brigid
Commissioned by: Rev. Jeremy Roy
Designed and Created by artist: Marika Bordes
Assisted by: Col. Joe Saenz, USAF, Ret. and Howard Crunk