Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Remembering Mom - a Tender Tribute from Cindy Kovack

Our very own instructor, Cindy Kovack was recently published in the April 2013 issue of Somerset Memories Magazine! A heartfelt tribute to her mother is the foundation of this lovely project and the basis for one of Cindy's Portland Art & Soul workshops. Here is a little bit of the published article, sharing the inspiration behind her creation...

This piece was created to honor my mother, Frances, shortly after her death. I come from a large family of 8, and 7 of us are girls. I was the only artist in the family.  My parents marveled at my artwork, wondered out loud where I had ever acquired the talent.

My mother did not see me as I watched her hands tear apart dresses and creatively spin a design from the fabric. So meticulous, so well made. I was always pleased with the results — as were my sisters — and we often had people marvel at her craftsmanship. Without realizing it, she had directed me onto my creative path in life.

I remember all those cold winter months in Ohio, when my sisters and I were bored to tears, with nothing to do. She’d prod us to embroider, crochet, sew... anything creative. Who remembers Pot Holder Kits, Paint-by-Number and mastering French Knots?

In her late 70’s she visited me one day while I was creating in my home. She told me she had been envious of my art ability, and what I had accomplished in my life. She admired my spirit, creative nature and independence, and said I had lived a life she wanted for her own. Admitting this fact helped us both have a much closer relationship, until her death at age 84.

She wanted that creative life for herself, but a woman from the 40’s and 50’s, having 8 children, and little education, could only have dreamed of a life as I have today. She never complimented me openly on my art, though she loved receiving gifts that were my original work, knowing I created each piece lovingly, especially for her. 

Many years later, relatives and friends told me she bragged often about my creative ventures and art ability. This was very heartwarming to hear and I appreciated hearing this from them. Creating this piece helped me to grieve her loss, using my art as a form of therapy to get through this difficult time.  I used a photograph of me as a child, holding my first dog, Buttons. I’ve incorporated several mementos from my childhood, all of them with special meaning to me. All of these pieces tie my work together for a very heartwarming memory of her. She has been missed, but is still an inspiration to me today.

Cindy Kovack will be teaching several workshops this October at Art & Soul in Portland Oregon, including Tenderly where you'll learn how to create these elaborate found object necklaces, Whimsical Flight making a painted, embellished bird, and Poker Face where you will make a unique playing card assemblages.

© 2013 article reprinted with permission of the author, Cindy Kovack and the publisher, Stampington & Company

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