Paper Wish Lanterns

15 05 2014

Last Fall I finished an oil painting that will be exhibited for the first time at the Birmingham Bloomfield Art Center beginning Friday May 16th from 6-8pm.

Marnie lantern oil painting

The painting is entitled “Paper Wish Lanterns” and it was inspired by Aim’s Light the Night event – Sky Lights of Love. This event was organized as a fund raiser and spirit raiser for our dear friend.  It was a magical night…To see Aim, her family, and all her supporting friends at the park…helping to bring forth hope and light out of darkness.  To see everyone helping each other open, hold, ignite and release the fragile paper lanterns.  To see the individual glowing orbs slowly lift from the hands of those who loved Aim.  To watch them float soundless up into the heavens…It was inspiring.

I remember seeing how the beautiful soft glow reflected and echoed on the faces of all who participated.   We created a trail of lights that started from the ground and traversed the night in a sweeping motion up to the heavens.  Each lantern carried the precious cargo of loving wishes for our friend (and even others that we wished to celebrate, remember and pay tribute to).

It was as though we were placing or casting stars into the sky.  As the lanterns rose and moved off, they began to intermingle and eventually become indistinguishable from the stars.All the magic, hope, love, and solemn beauty of that evening inspired me to compose and create my painting.

It is done using an old master technique called Venetian painting.  This is a very time intensive process in which you paint the entire painting several times over in different layers…building from contour drawing to monochrome to local color to final luminous color.  It took me 5 months to complete working full time in the studio.  It measures 6 feet by 4 feet.

I invite everyone to come out to the Birmingham Bloomfield Art Center to enjoy this piece in person.  It is just one piece in the larger Michigan Fine Arts Exhibition.  Works from many artists in Michigan and neighboring states will be on display.  The opening reception is Friday, May 16th from 6-8pm and is free and open to the public.  The exhibit will continue to run until July 11th.

Thank you for allowing me to share this piece which is very important and meaningful to me with all of you.


Don and me, testing one of the sky lanterns for the Dec. 3 Sky Lights of Love Benefit. Photo by Kristi Rugh Kahl.

Don and Amy, testing one of the sky lanterns for the Dec. 3 Sky Lights of Love Benefit. Photo by Kristi Rugh Kahl.

Dec 2011 095  Amy sending off her special pink birthday lantern

Theo and me, sending off the lantern in memory of my Mom and Dad, the grandparents he never knew. Photo by Don Neilson.

Theo and Amy, sending off the lantern in memory of her Mom and Dad, the grandparents he never knew. Photo by Don Neilson.




6 responses

15 05 2014

Marnie, if you’d ever sell a print of this painting, I’d be interested. Just looking at it makes me think of her….beautiful work.

15 05 2014

Amy loved looking at all Marnie’s art work. And I injoy them everyday. She is truly talented.

Thank you for the beauty you put on canvas.

15 05 2014

What an incredible tribute to Amy and so beautiful. She lives on. Thank you!

16 05 2014

Going to take family to see the painting. Thanks Marnie for such a fitting and eloquent tribute to our sister and aunt. Lisa, Dave, Emily and Zach.

16 05 2014
Bob Adams

Amy lives on, just as our tribute lives on–through the many remembrances here on this blog. She was so important to each of us. What higher tribute could be offered. Love you Amy.

16 05 2014
Jennifer Bopp Stegbauer

I love the venetia technique! And what a piece of artwork 6X4 feet! Please keep us informed where the painting will be after July 11th. I would love to see it at some point when I’m in town.

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