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Archive for the ‘CATHERINE L. JOHNSON / INTERDISCIPLINARY ARTIST’ Category

NURTURE NOURISH CELEBRATE WHAT BLOOOMS
A/LIVE BEYOND YOUR IMAGINATION
THAT IS LIFE’S NECTAR ELIXIR SWEETNESS

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 The heart of a tulip.
I look INTO the internal beauty of living.
The art of a simple tulip.
Sublime.
For you to see and know.

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MY BLOOOM LIVES                         For AWC                                           Catherine L. Johnson 2017

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https://catherineljohnson.wordpress.com/2017/06/01/736-my-blooom-lives-2017-catherine-l-johnson-pablo-neruda-keep-for-me-your-sweetness/

 

 

When peoples

care for you

and

cry for you,

they

can straighten

out your soul.

Langston Hughes

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Why does one extinguish riSING bloooms that have sweet fire
and consciously choose to keep dead things/bad energies that block breath?

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https://catherineljohnson.wordpress.com/2011/09/28/clear-out-throw-out-the-played-out-music-stopping-your-live-breath/

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Related image

MINE!!!!!

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The minute I heard my first love story,
I started looking for you,
not knowing how blind that was.

Lovers don’t finally meet somewhere.

They’re in each other all along.

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Rumi

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YESAWCBLESSEDBLOOOOMINGALIVEU/MEKISS

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#849 + 12 February 2019 + Abraham Lincoln ENTERED the world + ELEgancE #12 2019 Catherine L. Johnson + Henry Threadgill’s “CELEBRATION”

PLEASE CLICK ON IMAGES TO ENLARGE + FOR DETAIL

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ELEgancE #12                                                                                              Catherine L. Johnson 2019
An improvisational performance of gold pencil on black paper.

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HENRY THREADGILL

https://www.henrythreadgill.com/

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Celebrating Henry: A Threadgill Festival

https://walkerart.org/calendar/2019/celebrating-henry-a-threadgill-festival
15 February + 16 February 2019 @ WALKER ART CENTER, Minneapolis

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My maternal Grandfather,

Emil Cottor,

gifted me

Abraham Lincoln

bookends
when I was 7 years old.

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A gift before my next scheduled
reconstructive orthopedic surgery.

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My

beloved

Dr. Mark B. Coventry,

Mayo Clinic,
provided me

the life template of Abraham Lincoln

as a blueprint of living
a life of honor, respect, grace and vision
navigating
a life of adversity.

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The evening before surgery was always a time of me entering a sacred space.

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Grandpa Cottor,
after THE ceremonious “pre-surgery” dinner
my Mother prepared
attended by my sister and brothers,
Lynne, Bill Blake,
presented me
a wrapped box with satin ribbons.

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I was a wide-eyed child:

everything was wonder and awe and fear and courage.
The box was very, very, very heavy.
I opened it slowly and carefully,
rapt with anticipation,
and
when I saw
the busts of Abraham Lincoln,
I was overwhelmed with joy.

I burst out crying an ocean of joy!

Crying was not easy for me – living in body casts stifled crying.

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Grandpa Cottor KNEW Abraham Lincoln
was a signal,

a  secret code,

a dynamic symbol to me.
The fact of my Grandpa’s knowing
rushed
the feelings of being seen and loved
throughout
my body.

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On 12th February,
  when I was home from the hospital,
my Mother,  Doris Cottor Johnson Omlie,
always had a birthday cake
celebrating
the life of my childhood hero.
 

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AMAZING GRACE.

GRACE LOVE.

AWE LOVE.

WONDER LOVE.

DIGNITY.

RADICAL HOPE.

VISIONARY.

INTEGRITY.

COMPASSION.

COURAGE.

Cœur.

 

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Catherine Louise Johnson

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Catherine –  meaning “pure, clear”. 
I was named in honor of my maternal grandmother:

Edna Catherine Strand Cottor.

My Grandma Cottor was an elegant and extraordinary force of life.
  She was confined to bed at 53 y/o with Rheumatoid Arthritis.
Her body was frozen in the space of her bed.
Grandma Cottor’s remarkable creative intelligence
explored/ traveled the world and beyond.
Her body was frail and her presence radiated colossal. 

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Louise – meaning “famous warrior, renowned fighter”.
I was named in honor of my paternal grandmother:

Florence Louise Knoblach Johnson.

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Johnson – I kept my Daddy’s last name in honor of him,

Richard Harold Johnson,

who fought for me and my rights to thrive while living in hospitals
My Daddy was killed in a car accident when he was 32.
I kept the last name Johnson in honor of my Daddy’s brother,

William Henry Johnson,

a WWII pilot, who was killed at 23 y/o in his B-17
– safely returning his crew in his heavily damaged plane,
flying over the cliffs of Dover from a bombing mission.
He ordered his remarkable crew to bail out.
Uncle Bill’s faltering plane was heading toward a farmhouse
with a family waving their arms.
Uncle Bill, at 23 years old. made the decision to avert the farmhouse
and
he went down with his plane.

 

I was told, multiple times, 
by my Daddy’s family how they were 

PROUD

that I kept the name

JOHNSON

with fortitude, grace, honor and respect
of those before me
who lived their lives known
by the name

JOHNSON.

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My beloved
– Johnson side –
cousin “sister”
and
niece to my Daddy,

Connie Cates Shella,

lived, persevered and endured
with
grace, love and valor.
https://catherineljohnson.wordpress.com/2019/01/27/847-she-in-the-dark-found-light-brighter-than-many-ever-see-connie-cates-shella-5-september-1954-23-january-2019/

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I am aware,
at my age now,
I could be my Daddy’s parent
and
I could be my Uncle Bill’s aunt.
Yet, they are forever monumental to me.
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I can only hope
I live the life
that echoes the names I was given
and
amplify the templates
I was provided as a blueprint,
a vision,

to rise

in my own life.
 

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NAMING

“Words are things.
You must be careful, careful about calling people
out of their names,
using racial pejoratives and sexual pejoratives and all that ignorance.
Don’t do that.
Some day we’ll be able to measure the power of words.
I think they are things.
They get on the walls.
They get in your wallpaper.
They get in your rugs,
in your upholstery,
and
your clothes,
and
finally in to
you.”
 Maya Angelou

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WEARELOVEAWCCLJROLLEDDINMUDROLLEDINGOLDOVERANDOVERBEAUTIFUL

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PLEASE CLICK ON IMAGES TO ENLARGE + FOR DETAIL

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ELEgancE #10                                                                                           Catherine L. Johnson 2019

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ELEgancE #10 (detail *)                                                                        Catherine L. Johnson 2019
*The iridescence in the graphite/black lead reflects the light and presents a luminous silver.
Graphite pencils – HB/ 2B/ 4B on black paper.

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ELEgancE #11                                                                                           Catherine L. Johnson 2019

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Fantastic Negrito – Plastic Hamburgers

https://genius.com/Fantastic-negrito-plastic-hamburgers-lyrics

Fantastic Negrito says

‘I am Fantastic Negrito, but I did NOT get here alone…’

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Stacey Abrams says ‘We do NOT succeed alone’

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=RAFNEGOTIATORNEWBREEDLEADER=AWC=SONICGENIUSAWEMANRRMANWONDERCOLLABORATOR

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She,
In the dark,
Found light
Brighter than many ever see.
She,
Within herself,
Found loveliness,
Through the soul’s own mastery.
And now the world receives
From her dower:
The message of the strength
Of inner power.

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Langston Hughes

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CONNIE CATES SHELLA

5 September 1954 – 23 January 2019
https://www.dignitymemorial.com/obituaries/indianapolis-in/connie-shella-8138040

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AWEwoman.

I can see her as a child,

my cousin,

with her
long platinum brown hair falling
below her shoulders,
a quiet regal presence
and
a graceful ballerina demeanor.

Astonishing, to me.

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I knew her

as a woman

who was luminous,

grace,

fierce

in her determination
to

endure,

transcend

and

prevail.

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Her opened heart was

a July ruby bloom,

a maternal warm nest,
a safe hearth.

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Connie,

my “cousin-sister”,

a Queen,

who invited,
welcomed
and

upheld truth-telling,

elegant dignity

and 

lived the deep sea courage

of

unfathomable loving,

boundless hope,
with

a heartfire

that shined kind tenderness,
remarkable resilience
and

radiant beauty.

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My cousin’s

soul

spiraled, soared tonight

escaping her knotted coiled body
and,
in her last exhale,

a bright star

was created
in the vault
of
the
night sky.

 

Wednesday, 23 January 2019

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Thank you, Connie.
You live forever in my heart beat.

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Connie WITH me. 13 July 2015.

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PLEASE CLICK ON IMAGES TO ENLARGE + FOR DETAIL

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ELEgancE #9  

Graphite pencil on Kraft paper.
An improvisation.
The drawn graphite lines

shift

from rich black lead color
to
luminous silver

with the interplay

of
 the ambient light
and
the position of the viewer

all in relation

to the contemporaneous variables.

Dynamic.

Intimate.
Dialectical.

Performance.

Attending.

Change is constant.

Movement in stillness.

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Life is not static nor fixed.

HABITS of perception / REACTING.

Conditioned optics shaped by arbitrary convention
and
hard-wired by continuous, repetitive practice
without questioning or awareness.

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A/LIVE

VISION/ary.

RADICAL hope.

SACRED listening.

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DARE to DREAM.

DARE to ACT.

DARE to MOVE FORWARD.

 

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ELEgancE #9                                                                                           Catherine L. Johnson 2019

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ELEgancE #9    (detail *)                                                                     Catherine L. Johnson 2019
*The iridescence in the graphite/black lead reflects the light and presents a luminous silver.

 

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Image result for mlk quotes

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Image result for mlk quotes

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Adafruit MLK hero 1

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Image result for mlk jr quotes stick to love

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NEW BREED LEADERS keep MOVING FORWARD!

They MUST
for it is the responsibility / meaning / life force
of their

DIVINE gifts.

Red Sea crossings.

EXODUS.

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EXODUSIMFREEATLASTIAINTGOINGBACKIMFREE                  CATHERINE L. JOHNSON 2013

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THE HUMANITY PORTFOLIO 2013
https://catherineljohnson.wordpress.com/2013/08/29/fifteen-paintings-28-august-2013-the-humanity-portfolio-28-august-2013-the-50th-anniversary-of-the-march-on-washington-for-freedom-jobs-rev-dr-martin-luther-kings-i-have-a-dream-s/

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Image result for harris wofford

Harris L. Wofford

9 April 1926 – 21 January 2019

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  Blessings of luminous grace and love to our cousins:
his daughter, Susanne Wofford;
his son, Dan Wofford; 
his son, David Wofford;
his husband, Matthew Charlton;
his beloved family;
to

ALL

social justice / civil rights

visionaries / activists

and
to his dedicated colleagues / collaborators,
past and present,

who

RISE FOR HUMANITY.

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https://www.washingtonpost.com/
http://www.philly.com/opinion/commentary/harris-wofford-obituary-us-senate-20190128.html
http://www.startribune.com/harris-wofford-activist-who-served-in-senate-dies-at-92/504698852/
https://catherineljohnson.wordpress.com/2015/03/09/selma-bloody-sunday-50th-anniversary-2015-rev-dr-martin-luther-king-jr-s-speech-how-long-not-long-harris-wofford-what-i-saw-at-selma-today-my-dear-friends-presence-as-a-fami/
https://www.npr.org/2019/01/22/687373085/harris-wofford-former-senator-civil-rights-activist-dies-at-92
http://www.philly.com/news/obituaries-harris-wofford-pennsylvania-civil-rights-martin-luther-king-jfk-bryn-mawr-college-20190122.html
https://www.nationalservice.gov/newsroom/other-news/2019/remembering-harris-wofford
https://charlierose.com/videos/13481

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NEWBREEDLEADERAWCYOUMOVEFORWARDBECAUSEYOUMUSTYOURLIFEISTORISEANDTOBESEENLOVED

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PLEASE CLICK ON IMAGES TO ENLARGE + FOR DETAIL

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ELEgancE #8                                                                                                  Catherine L. Johnson 2019

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Nature’s offering outside my loft. My sacred listening to Nature’s offerings. Private RHYTHM.

 

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15 January 1997.

The last evening of my Mother’s life.

Doris Eileen Cottor Johnson Omlie.
She spoke to me with a quiet and searing lullaby/hymn voice.
I listened to the sonics of her voice
its intonation, pause, lift, emphasis, rhythm
– the delivery of a score, a choreography,
her annunciation for me.
Her words were illuminations
instantly etched/embedded forever
into my heartsoul
becoming my blueprint,
my light in darkness and my mantra. 

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The following morning 16 January at 9 am,
I found my Mother’s warm lifeless body
– her robin’s egg blue eyes open,
her head tilted toward the window,
her artist’s right arm lying
on top of her bed sheets
  and
her hand palm up, open.
Her dogs were asleep,
breathing heavily in deep dreams,
at the end of her bed.

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There was a low,
rich vibrating energy,

a golden presence

that drew me to her.

I listened to its sound.

I discovered her end.
I prayed for strength and grace
to guide me in my new beginning.

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Thank YOU Mom for y/our

EXODUS song

for me

– my gospel song to

enter the Wilderness

of uncharted territories

adapting, improvising, overcoming

with

FAITH

+

OPEN HEART

+

RADICAL HOPE

+

GRACE LOVE.

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