Tuesday, October 6, 2015

The Halls Hill Labyrinth Essay Collection

I recently returned to Bainbridge Island to visit the Labyrinth I completed in May of 2014.  It was my first time back since the dedication ceremony last June.  An attractive wood box containing laminated fliers describing the meaning of the Labyrinth has replaced the interpretive sign that was there when I was working on the project.  Most of the horse shoes from the stables across the road were gone although a couple had been moved to the hole in the center where offerings are placed.

 It was a wonderful experience to see how this magical space has fared over the past year, beautifully maintained and brimming with the accumulated energy of the thousands of people who have walked it in my absence.  I came with two friends from Portland who had never seen it except in pictures.  One of them, my dear friend Eric Slade, came to film the space as part of a story he is making for Oregon Public Broadcasting's show Oregon Art Beat on my work as an artist.

Eric Slade filming the offerings in the center of the Labyrinth
People came to walk the Labyrinth while we were there and I had some engaging conversations.  There is a small photo of me from the dedication on the fliers in the box and people would look at me and the picture and make the connection that we were one and the same person.

Visitors walking the Labyrinth
Conversations always delve in to the meanings incorporated in to the design, the 12 moons on the outside ring, the 108 stones in the 10th circuit forming a Tibetan Mala, and the 9 circuits representing the planets in our solar system.  Some people followed the process on my blog as I posted essays after the completion of each circuit while I was working.  I suggested to those who haven't read them to do so as the texts and photos give a much better understanding of what you are walking on as you go around and around the concentric circular paths.

But finding the essays in a chronological order is not all that easy the way the blog site is organized, so I've decided it would be a good idea to list the links to the essays here as a list so that you can click on the links and go from the beginning to the end as they are meant to be read.  So here it is:

1. The Labyrinth Project, the beginning

2. The Halls Hill Labyrinth Project: The Mala Circuit

3. The Halls Hill Labyrinth: Pluto and the Four Elements

4. Halls Hill Labyrinth: The Neptune Circuit

5. The Halls Hill Labyrinth, the 7th Circuit, Uranus, God of the Sky

6. The Halls Hill Labyrinth, the 6th Circuit, The Rings of Saturn

7. The Apollon Beach Mosaics, Greece

8. The Minoan Labyrinth

9. The Halls Hill Labyrinth, Jupiter

10. The Halls Hill Labyrinth, The Fourth Circuit, Mars

11. The 3rd Circuit, Earth, the Community Circuit

12.  The Halls Hill Labyrinth, The 2nd Circuit, Venus, Love

13. The Halls Hill Labyrinth, The First Circuit, Mercury

14. The Halls Hill Labyrinth, The Sun

A red flower in the Summer quadrant of the 11th Circuit

Filming requires repeating shots over and over until the desired look is captured.  Eric filmed me walking barefoot, back and forth on different sections depending on the light for hours.  I could feel the warmth of the sun on the black rocks in the autumnal quarter of the circle as I tred on them as opposed to the coolness of the lighter colors.  I really noticed how different the level of connection is when you walk it barefoot rather than in shoes.

The opening in the center of the Labyrinth contains offerings left by a number of people
I was flooded with memories thinking back to the times I spent on each section, the many flowers dedicated to people who rang the Prayer Wheel, the stones I brought back from Greece, and the beauty of the place where I was fortunate enough to spend over 3 months working on this beautiful project.  From what people told me while I was there, the place has brought peace and solice and introspection to the many people who have walked it, as was intended.  I love that!

Thanks for reading, and if you have time, read the essays from start to finish.  They're pretty interesting.
XO, Jeffrey

Dappled Autumnal light on the Labyrinth
Blakely Harbour, Bainbridge Island, Washington