A Pilgrim’s Journey


Our family traveled to Chicago for the Christmas Holiday. Like pilgrims seeking truth, we loaded the SUV, climbed aboard, and traveled north.

We witnessed architecture, we shopped stores, and we walked busy streets like so many other pilgrims and tourists. We went to the top of the John Hancock Building and the Sears Tower. At night, we hit Heaven on 7 for dinner. I ordered Sesame Crusted Chicken and Greens. It was the best meal I have ever eaten.

But it wasn’t until we entered the Art Institute of Chicago that I knew why we had come. It was there that I found peace. My search for truth had ended. Hanging before me were fantastic works of art, masterpieces every one. Paintings, etchings, sculptures I had studied in Art History were there before my eyes:

Georges Seurat’s “A Sunday on La Grande Jatte”,

Grant Wood’s “American Gothic”,

Georgia O’Keeffe’s “Black Cross, New Mexico”,

Vincent Van Gough’s “The Bedroom” and “Self Portrait”,

Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec’s “At the Moulin Rouge”,

Gustave Caillebotte’s “Paris Street, Rainy Day”,

Pablo Picasso’s “Daniel-Henry Kahnweiler”.

Their beauty moved me. Their power over-whelmed me. Stroke, Color, Movement, and Texture combined to create harmony and precision. Each piece spoke to me. They helped return me to a time when I had tried to understand art. It was a time when I made desperate attempts to create my own works. It was a time of creativity and passion.

How I longed for the days when a brush fit into my hands and printer’s ink stained my nail beds. I closed my eyes and dreamed of paint, pastel, pen and ink. The familiar smell of paper and chalk drifted through my head like smoke. I love art. I love making art. And I made a vow. My journey was complete.