It’s Been A While

It’s been a while since my last blog entry.  A lot has happened in this thing called life – some very challenging and some very hopeful and beautiful.  About a year ago I had lost my mom because of cancer.  Through the trying times, I had to dig deep coming to grips with my faith and even questioning what I think I really believe.  The grieving and the healing have been painfully gut wrenching, but I do believe it is necessary to go through. At times missing her has left me feeling numb but life continues and I am grateful for experiencing this incredible thing called grace.

MomsLastBdayWithUs

Mom’s last birthday with us (Brother Dean with ukulele)

Looking back, little did I know that an intimate and important conversation would comfort mom, spark my creativity, help heal me and offer hope to others.  Shortly after mom had found out that she had stage four cancer, she dropped by our home (mom lived next door to us) and as she sat on our couch she kept saying, “This going be so hard”.  I told her “I know mom and I’m sorry you have to go through this”.  Not knowing what else to say, I read to her the words that a close friend had sent to me earlier.

“Therefore we do not lose heart.  Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day.  For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all.  So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.” (2 Corinthians 4:16-18, NIV)

So after I read this I knew that mom didn’t understand it all, so I tried to explain it in a way that she would understand and be comforted.  “Hard only for little while mom, God changing you inside to something golden.  You going to have no more disease, no more diabetes. Imagine that mom”.  At that moment I could see her face change from worry, pain and frustration to awe and almost wonder.  “No more disease”, she said with relief and almost joy.  Mom passed away 3 and a half weeks later and though after her passing it’s been most challenging, looking back, I see God’s amazing grace through it all.

As a way to help cope with learning about the terrifying news of mom’s cancer to the pain of losing and missing her, I began to paint.  I would reflect on the Bible verse and put down whatever I was going through at the moment.  It may have been dealing with personal struggle or celebrating in triumph or simply observing something that struck me as beautiful or captivating such as the colors of a morning sky or sunlight filtering through leaves.

MorningLightInspiration

Morning sky inspiration

 Each day, I would put down a layer on a painting. I would work on several paintings at a time and layer upon layer the work became a journal of what was going on in my life.

BeginningUpliftingGrace

Beginnings of “Uplifting Grace” painting

 

BeNotAfraidInProgress2

“Be Not Afraid” in progress

BeNotAfraidInProgress

More layers of pigment being applied

StudioWorksInProgress2

Working on several paintings at a time

UnfoldingHibiscus1

Watching a white hibiscus plant unfold

UnfoldingHibiscus2

. . . . and open towards the light

GraceFoam

White foam after the waves would break across the shore over silver and golden light

GraceOverSilverLight

Recalling the foam over light as another layer of pigment is applied

GraceOverLight

Watching “grace” over golden light dry

TidePoolsCupsOfGrace

Tide pools as cups of grace

FoamOnReefCloudsOverSky

Grace spilling into “tide pools” (work in progress)

CloudsOfGrace

Grace clouds

UpliftingGraceInProgress

Grace clouds finding its way into the work

LightFollowingMe

Morning light following me into the work

StudioWorksInProgress

More works being developed

GoldBlue

The golden light of eternity in “Forevermore”

Even though the work was created during a very challenging time, it began to take a new direction and speak a message of hope.  These paintings eventually evolved into an exhibition called “Unfolding Grace”.  The title came from another version of the same scripture that encouraged mom (and me).

“Even though on the outside it often looks like things are falling apart on us, on the inside, where God is making new life, not a day goes by without his unfolding grace.” (2 Corinthians 4:16 MSG)

ArrivingArtrue

Arriving at Artrue Gallery

I just returned from Taipei, Taiwan where I was privileged to share this message of hope through 34 works from the past year.  Working with Artrue has been such a blessing as the gallery owner Ginny Chien, curator Virginia Chang and the rest of the staff have encouraged and supported me and my wife Sue throughout the journey.  I was humbled and privileged that dear family and friends also made the long trek to celebrate with us.  Least to say it was an incredible experience that I will never forget.  I thank God for bringing it all together and healing my broken heart along the way, my wife Sue for her undying love and support (couldn’t have done this without you), Andrew and Lillian Miao for being angels to us, all the help I got with building the shipping crates (Mante, Irwin, Uncle Bonie, Larry) and the countless prayers from friends and family.  Mahalo nui!!

ArtrueGallery

Installation5

Working with Virginia as the crew unpack the artwork.

Floorplan

Working on the floor plan . . .

Installation1

Virginia

Installation3

. . . as the crew start to hang the paintings.

Postcard

Exhibition announcement

Flowers

Beautiful flowers for the opening

Artrue

Opening day

Sharing+Vincent

Sharing at 1 of 5 artists talks with Vincent translating.

Speaking2

WithMicrophone

AndrewLillian

Our art angels Andrew and Lillian Miao

LadiesArtrue

Owner Ginny Chien (center) and some of the staff of Artrue

JoannaLisa

shaka

Teaching our friends the shaka sign (hang loose).

Everyone

Thank you everyone for coming!!  Back row l to r: Ida, Andrew, Herbert, Gabriele, Lei, Calee, Sue, Delro, Irwin, Beth, Aileen, John, Ronnie.  Back row l to r: Mao, Masaki, Lillian, Mante, Ginny, Garret, Sako, Julie.

Me&Sue

Thanks for everything Sue!  Love you.

The exhibition will be up until January 6, 2018 or you can view it here on Artsy: https://www.artsy.net/show/artrue-gallery-unfolding-grace-delro-rosco-solo-exhibition-en-xian-de-luo-ruo-si-ke-ge-zhan

MomPineapple

Love you and miss you so much mom.

 

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