Out of the ashes.

My dear friend Fern, who passed away in June, owned and ran the PineCrone Labyrinth and Retreat Center at her home in Bastrop Texas. It was totally destroyed last month, burned in the Texas wildfires. The only things that remained of the retreat center intact were made of stone or concrete such as the native stone labyrinth, the fire pit and concrete statues of Mary.

The Bastrop Complex fire destroyed most of the Lost Pines Forest, a rare ecological niche and disjunct population of loblolly pine (Pinus taeda) trees thought to have originated in or before the Pliestocene era. The endangered Houston toad found in the forest is believed to have lost most of it’s habitat. The fire also consumed  over 1600 homes.

I am making a mixed media mosaic for a fundraiser in benefit of the restoration of PineCrone. This week I received three boxes of shards picked up by the volunteers cleaning the land. At first I was very reluctant to open them knowing how sad it would be to see the remains of my friend’s home but eventually when I did, I found a strange, poignant beauty in the debris. I will be using these in the mosaic, tentatively called “The Phoenix”. Here are a few photos of the shards.

Mary statue
Salt and pepper shakers
Intact Delftware tile
Silverware and metal
Melted and fused glass

Fern was a major Dr Who fan …

The Tardis

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