The Flying Leaves at Texas Lutheran University

The Unveiling Ceremony

“The Flying Leaves”

Texas Lutheran University

Student Alumni Center
November 14, 2014

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Dr. Stuart Dorsey President, TLU

Dr. Stuart Dorsey
President, TLU

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Mr. Rick Roberts, Vice-President for Development and Alumni Relations

 

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Comments by Marika:

Good afternoon everyone and welcome to the debut of The Flying Leaves.

Creativity flowers in the doing, in the experiencing of life, and in having community.  Over 30,000 years ago, artists connected their communities by creating art on the walls of caves.  Since, the methods of artists have changed while the impulse to connect has not.  “The Flying Leaves,” are a perfect example.

In commissioning this Bas-relief wood sculpture, the TLU Development Office called upon the creativity of our community to make a statement out of a piece of American walnut.

As a great force of nature capable of spreading beauty and understanding, this piece of wood pictures the clear channel of spiritual communion between the university and the students.  Thank you TLU for giving us the opportunity to connect with you through a state of creative grace and a sense of the sublime.

I would like to pay tribute to a friend Dr. Evelyn Streng who left us today.  She was a constant inspiration in the making of the leaves.  She did not handle mallet and chisels but truly she had a hand in fashioning the message of the sculpture.  In September she told me that even if she is not present for the unveiling ceremony she will be there with us.

Having you here today is a truly humbling experience.  So allow me to end now by thanking each and every one of you for celebrating the arts and for being part of this community.

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The Flying Leaves American Walnut H 24" W 108" D 2"

The Flying Leaves
American Walnut
H 24″ W 108″ D 2″

Flying Leaves C

Detail

Detail

 

 

 

 

 

Plaque for  “Flying Leaves”

The TLU Development Office project begins with straight-forward design specifications of a tree and leaves for the artwork.  From there, the idea flows into the realm of visual artistry.  The rendezvous of ideas and art leads to a tree with a strong trunk deeply rooted to a rich landscape.  Carrying the essence of the concept into a Bas-relief wood sculpture, a locally harvested American Walnut, gives birth to “The Flying Leaves”.

The symbolism behind the tree and the leaves is the interconnectivity between the university and its graduates.

  • The tree with its many limbs, represents Texas Lutheran University;
  • The flying leaves are the graduating students who after a period of learning boldly leave the university with the mission of “Live to Inspire”; and
  • The landscape is the journey ahead into the greater community.

The wisdom of the narrative resides in the harmonious cycle of this interconnectivity.  The seeds of knowledge germinate, the leaves spread the news and the world becomes a better place.

The artists

Marika (Marie-Carmel Bordes) a Seguin artist, originally from the Caribbean Island of Haiti, is the official sculptor of “The Flying Leaves”.  With a wonderful moment of celebration in mind, she leads the concept of the Bas-relief sculpture with the assistance of Howard E. Crunk, a TLU graduate in the arts, class of 2007.   Together with mallet and chisels, they testify to the indelible legacy of the alma mater and the alumni.

Dennis Martin and Marika Bordes

The Coleman Theatre- Carving Passion

Theatre Poster

Theatre Poster

 Carving Passion

Miami News Record

Miami, OK

By: Jessica Graham jessica.graham@maiminewsrecord.com | Posted: Thursday, June 26, 2014

MIAMI — Coleman Theater books bus tours to see Haitian wood sculptor.

Marika Bordes, from Seguin, Texas, brought 14 of her artistic wood carving pieces, which have been displayed in the grand ballroom on the top floor of the Coleman theater all week.

“It is an honor to have my art displayed in Miami,” Bordes said. “I am very happy to be here.”

Managing Director Darcie Shultz said when looking for artists to bring to Miami, Bordes stood out among the others.

Shultz said the Mid-America Arts Alliance website directed her to five state agencies which had rosters of artists who had been selected to represent their state for touring. The alliance provides grant support for programs like this one.

“So I went to the Texas Arts Council website and I went through almost every single artist in every genre and Marika just stood out to me,” Shultz said. “I thought, ‘this is really interesting.’”

She said she felt the walk-through gallery — displaying Bordes’ art — would add to the experience of the daily tours.

“I am excited to be here (at the Coleman Theater),” Marley Kuckhahn from Minnesota said. “The art is beautiful work.”

The Coleman Theater was one of the stops for a bus tour from Minnesota on its way to a mission convention in Dallas.

Bordes was born in Haiti and raised in Montreal, Canada. She said 17-years ago she met her mentor Francois Sanon, a Haitian artist, who works in the Afro-Caribbean tradition. Sanon, she said, helped her realize she had talent.

“My mentor saw it (talent) and I did not see it myself,” Bordes said. “You know when someone tells you that you are talented you don’t believe it.”

She said she gets her inspiration from daily living. One particular piece called “Carousel of Woman” represents the life of woman. She explained the piece in detail of how she carved each woman on a raft.

“The piece begins from youth and how the girl is thinking about her dresses,” Bordes said. “Then she jumps to motherhood where her world is devoted to kids and after one point in life some goes to religion and they cling to an icon, which is why I put the Virgin Mary.

“And at one point in our life there is this woman who is holding to the raft because she does not believe in anything in the world anymore. Maybe she has disappointment with kids, maybe religion but she is just holding to life without no faith at all. And then all of a sudden you have the smallest one (woman), she’s holding to nothing. It’s wisdom at that point.”

Bordes said every single piece she carves has a story. She described the feelings she had while carving “The Beggar.”

“In 2010 when my country went through that earthquake, I realized from day one to day two that a lot of people become beggar, so I started with that idea and what it did to me deeply to understand what beggar is, is the conversation I had with her (The Beggar),” Bordes said. “I tried to see the humiliation but I also try to see the hope.”

Bordes said she always uses woman as her subjects in her art work because woman are the “seed keepers and they direct the world.

The Coleman Theater hosted Bordes’ last viewing on Thursday but her sculptors can be seen on her website at https://marikasculptures.com/

Coleman Theatre Marquee

Coleman Theatre Marquee

 

The Little Prince as Inspiration

The Little Prince as Inspiration at Bihl Haus Arts, San Antonio 

Excerpts

All of us experience feelings of alienation and vulnerability during life’s transitions.   During my childhood, my family sent me from the Caribbean Island of Haiti to Quebec, Canada.  Here the Catholic nuns taught me.  At age fourteen, living in a foreign land, I read The Little Prince for a class assignment.   From the beginning, the Little Prince gave me strength, understanding and a vision.  We formed a life-long bond.

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Later in life, I turn to the noble childhood perspective of the Little Prince to walk the path of inspiration.

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I understand, one must go back to a childlike mind to make things happen.  So, when it came to carving my version of the Little Prince, the character was so embodied in my psyche and, like Michelangelo, I just carved away the excess of material to release him from a single piece of oak: my hero was born.

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Be also aware that there is a deep connection between risk taking and creativity.  One cannot repeat again and again the same pattern and expect a different result.  We need to be challenged to crystalize the eternity of a moment.

Marika sining the Haitian song she sung while carving "Grace."

Marika sining the Haitian song she sung while carving “Grace.”

The Little Prince with the Rose and the Fox

The Little Prince with the Rose and the Fox

 

Photos of Gwaihir by Don Simpson

Gwaihir

Don Simpson is a photographer and instructor.   He recently took a series of photos of Gwaihir a sculpture over fourteen feet tall.  To create the photographs, he used a technique called HDR, High Dynamic Range imagining.  You can contact Don Simpson at: Donaldbsimpson@gmail.com or 512.591.7728.

Don has given us permission to use the photos in the soon to be published “Marika: The Path of a Sculptor”.

We hope you enjoy the photos.

Gwaihir- detail

Gwaihir- detail

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Gwaihir is a mythological eagle in the “Lord of the Rings.”  He is key to the success of The Fellowship of the Ring that sets out to save Middle Earth from the evils of Mordor.  Gwaihir saves the wizard Gandalf the Gray from the Tower of Isengard and when Mount Doom erupts, he rescues the Hobbits, Frodo and Sam.  Without this eagle, the salvation of Middle Earth was lost.

Gwaihir

Gwaihir

Gwaihir is currently on loan to the Georgetown Public Library in Georgetown, TX.

Invitation to Marika’s Solo Exhibition at Bihl Haus Arts, May 16, 2014

Marika’s Solo Exhibition at Bihl Haus Arts

The centerpiece for the exhibition is The Little Prince inspired by the book of the same name by Antoine de Saint-Exupéry.  Here is a photo of the live oak before work began on the sculpture and below is a photo of current progress.

Raw Live Oak from Glen Cove, Seguin

Raw Live Oak from Glen Cove, Seguin

Opening Reception: Friday, May 16, 2014

From: 5:30 pm to 8:30 pm

2803 Fredericksburg Road

(Inside the gates of Primrose at Monticello Park Senior Apartments)

San Antonio, TX 78201

The Little Prince- in Progress

The Little Prince- in Progress

Sculpture of a Woman- A Completed Work

Untitled

Untitled

The sculpture is complete except for the name.  If you have any suggestions, please let us know.

For the first time, we are using glass for the base.  Fine art glass artist, Anne Burtt of San Antonio made the base.  A link to her Website is found in the left column under the heading ARTISTS.  Thank you, Charles Ingram of Inspire Fine Art Center (See link under ARTS ORGANIZATIONS) for introducing Anne Burtt to Marika Sculptures LLC.

Glass Base by Anne Burtt

Glass Base by Anne Burtt

Sculpture of a Woman- A Work-in-Progress

Sculpture of a Woman- Untitled

The sculpture, a work-in-progress, measures H17″ W4″ D3″ and is made of pecan wood.  Marika is in the process of refining the figure and will soon begin sanding by hand.

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