From the start I felt like resorting to clay. Hope is such a furtive energy, I needed to turn it into a body. Clay makes work feel like a patient stroke, leaning over a skin in need of solace and consolation. A balm on some secret wound. I spent years with kids as a social worker and a teacher hence their voice and existential demand always floats in my head. After a while I heard it ask me “What what does hope mean ?”...
In this world estranged from kindness, wrecked like and old fabric we’re endlessly sawing back together, how would I tell a story of hope to a child ? The outlook appeared slowly. I saw the half human-half bird unfurl day by day. As time went by the nose turned into a beak. Each step required different techniques and tools (carving tools, tiny organic sponges, gouges, tiny brushes, etc.).
Some details had to wait for the third or fourth day since the clay had to be slightly moist. As water leaves, the piece becomes both stronger (rigid) and weaker (it can break now), just like our souls do, so it is a delicate phase that demands extra care. The wing and the feathers and the arm and each finger took an entire night to reach the movement and energy I wanted. This “care” turned into a spiritual walk, taking me to thoughts about relationship ecology and boundaries.
Hope feels like a vivid horizon and this piece embodies a possibility to embrace it, to renounce our categories (human, non-human), our certainties, our inextinguishable thirst for easy answers to complex questions, to raise our heads and look beyond: beyond the visible, the known, the familiar. I hope for more secure living beings that will dwell into complexity and feel safe in it.
I carved a hole at the heart and the “AE” text box, the first letters of my studio, "Amar Esquisse". As soon as the clay dried I painted it with acrylic inks, being careful that they did not conceal the texture. Matter, just like us, is shaped and kneaded by life and the traces of this process are precious to me, just like scars are. I then worked with 22 carats golden leaves. It made me think how much we need to lose to reach abundance and be one and how emptiness is not nothingness.
I came up with the name “Vivance”. It is a rare word in French that is barely ever used. It’s difficult for me to translate it. It describes this high intensity of being alive (“vivant” means alive). So I guess my story of hope is how hope is life itself. I am very thankful for the joy and spiritual journey the Festival of Hope offered me.
My name is Marina Ciceron, my art nickname is Amar (amaresquisse.com). I am a 32 years old anthropologist and therapist from France. I welcome patients from different countries and I also take care of social workers in various institutions. I also work as a writer and local artist. Fieldworks in India and social work with families from all over the world and transcultural therapy have profoundly influenced and colored my perception of the world and my passion for narratives. I have always been drawing, painting, carving into things, processing life. This fantasy world as a kid became my professional garden. Today I fight for Dostoievski's "Beauty will save the world". I joyfully do so in my little studio in Meuse with watercolors, clay, inks and linocuts to create poetic artworks: postcards, paintings, prints, sculptures, bookmarks, dry flowers vials, poems, travel narratives, tales... I believe in a violentless war for grace won inch by inch by art. I believe art is the thread that makes us the pearls of a neckless, runs through us and makes us one. This belief is so quietly rooted in me that, as a therapist, especially with post traumatic care, I resort to colors and creativity. I relentlessly explore life and meet people engaged in the same process worldwide.