There is a kind of interesting story to this one…..it starts off with a phone call from my brother on the tube, asks me to call him when he gets home. In the intervening period he has a kind of waking/dosing dream about me in a round about way. He talks about it as a metaphor of my spiritual life, a tree, but it’s floating somewhere above the Himalayas, surrounded by a rainbow. There are birds in the tree, and rabbits in the roots…. then a tibetan monk appears in the middle of the tree banging a gong, which resonates through the tree. There are some other references about some difficulties I had with other people…..in the dream this translated as pinning my skin to the tree but it not sticking. The message was about others thinking they can damage my soul, but it is impossible, you can only hurt the flesh, the soul is impervious to physical action as it does not exist within the physical world. Sooo…. I did a painting later on paper exploring this story. A kind of abstract tree with a person sitting in its shade appeared, with a red line as the spine. When this translated again to oils, the person becomes a woman and pregnant, with what looks like a wormy snake approaching along the ground. So the allusion to christian stories is not lost on me. What has been interesting is the deep level of entry these stories are sitting in my unconscious. That got me thinking about art and the mythical and religious stories that form the theme of so many. At this time I was about to go to Italy the next year and spend many hours wandering the art galleries in Rome, Perugia, and Florence. My modern context seemed so distanced, but yet there was a part of me that played with and explored all these stories. I think Picasso did a series of line drawings depicting the stories at art….. greek and christian mythologies. Why do artists do that, and why were these theme coming up in my work? The deeply allegorical nature of pondering unanswerable questions and the qualities of wisdom, what is it, who are we, why do we have these stories.