One of my favorite projects has been taking 125 year old window frames from my Grandma’s hotel and putting together natural landscapes of many favorite places I’ve traveled to.
It broke my heart when the old hotel at Leesville was refurbished on the exterior and all new windows put in; I claimed the old ones. They sat in the old barn for 10 years while I wondered what to do with them. Mud wasps built nests between the panes, and their saliva etched the glass. On some of them you can find circular smooches – this is literally etched and now part of the art.
One day, I realized my massive repository of photographs which I’d been taking for years, held the key to the next phase of my creative journey. I loved to take photographs. And the epiphany hit. Why not frame them with these old windows?
As a delightful detail, my Grandma had me paint every one of these windows when I was around 11 years old. Sometimes the paint job is a little sloppy, sorry. I left them as they were, with fondness for those long summertime childhood days spent in the country at Grandma’s house.
Window to the Soul series:
On the Other Side series:
Still looking? I have more than what are pictured here. It was a big two-storey hotel!
A little more about the hotel: It’d been in the family for 125 years. My Grandma was born there. It was a stagecoach stop out of Williams and across the hills, into Lodoga and Stonyford. When Highway 20 was built, the need for these old towns along the windy roads through the mountains dried up and blew away, as did the towns. What was a thriving little town first stop from Williams eroded to just a handful of houses.
On one of the bedroom doors (my bedroom) boasted the sign “Jack London slept here”. I spent the summers of my childhood with Grandma, and with fondness peered out these old many-paned windows at oak-strewn golden hills that were hours and hours of wandering and getting lost, picking up bones, hunting fish, riding horses… with all the time in the world…