Pilgrimage to the Wild, 2014
The children, our children, are very much aware of what is happening to the world. In this outdoor installation in 2014, marking the 50th anniversary of the signing of The Wilderness Act, they decide not to wait for us and go on a Pilgrimage to the Wild. This work is a further exploration of what Allons les enfants focused on. It consists of 60 forked branches, and 60 red flannel bundles hung from the branches with red cotton thread. The forked branches serve as walking sticks. The forked branch is the symbol for the pilgrim in Medieval France, the V of the Y being a good place to hang one’s bundle. In the little red bundles of my 60 children is my love. The number 60 is a symbol for time. I use it because, with the global climate crisis, we don’t seem to have much time left.
As a grownup who aspires to cultivating ‘the child within,’ I often ponder how I, as a human being on a spiritual path, as an artist, as an activist, can best respond to what is happening to the Earth. These thoughts, or meditations, sometimes lead me to consider leaving everything for a more participatory form of meditation—the act of walking with intention… pilgrimage. In this installation my personal pilgrimage merges with the children in pilgrimage.
The collaborator here was an unknown creature who took an interest in my little red bundles and perfectly ‘placed’ one on the branch hanging over the installation.
It has long been an axiom of mine that the little things are infinitely the most important.
— Arthur Conan Doyle