A couple of years ago I was visiting San Francisco and happened upon several artists showing their work in Union Square. There was one woodcut I just couldn't get out of my head, "Transplant" by Bridget Henry, a Santa Cruz based artist. Over a period of about nine months, I sent her regular payments until finally I'd paid off my "art on layaway." My friend Sam and I drove to Santa Cruz to pick up the woodcut one weekend when we were going to a play in San Juan Bautista (at El Teatro Campesino).
I still love the piece. I moved on average every three years when I was growing up. Frequently, I went through the process of putting down new roots in a seemingly barren place. Usually I flourished, but the beginnings sometimes produced anxiety. This woodcut reminds me of who I am. I still sometimes experience that delicate feeling of starting new growth with hopes for a healthy, strong, happy future.
Yesterday I received an invitation to the Santa Cruz Open Studios 2007 tour (October 6, 7, 13, 14) which will include Bridget's studio. For more information, check out Bridget's website under events. If you're near Santa Cruz, you should drop by to see more work by this talented artist!