Ceremonies, rituals & community arts

A major focus of my work is the link between art, spirituality, and the community- how can Art feed the health and well-being of the community? To this end, for the for the last 25 years I've created and lead healing and celebratory rituals, ceremonies, and art, for both individuals and communities. If you would like to have me help create a Ceremony or ritual, please email me here. Below are some examples of my community art and ceremonial work.

Bolinas Spirit House | Dedicated 9.14.02 in Bolinas, CA

A spirit house, a shrine, an altar – each is a manmade object that offers a portal to the unknown. Throughout the world, both in ancient times and now, these structures have allowed peoples and cultures to actively engage in a dialogue between their beliefs and the mysterious natural forces that surround them. 

Brighton Beach, Bolinas | Spring 1986

This gathering was held in the middle of the week on a Thursday afternoon.  We wanted to celebrate the change of season by representing the transformation from winter’s sleep to spring’s abundance.

The cyclical nature of change was represented by the three white horses that circled continuously around the performance site.  Winter was represented by a mask dancer coming out of a deep sleep; spring by a dance of young woman.  The fecundity of spring was represented by a mound of flowers and fruit, moon faces and sea shells, and a heart with a painting of the earth.

Gateway to Sacred Visions | Fall 1986 and 1988

In 1986 and again in 1988 we did a large community event on All Souls Day.  These events took weeks of preparation and many community members of all ages took part in the artistic process. On the day of the event people gathered in the center of town then proceeded in a colorful procession to the beach.  Once we reached the beach we had dances, poetry, and a shared ceremony that fed the wellbeing of our community.

Please notice that in one of the photographs the girls are holding butterflies of their own making;  two years later they’ve grown and are holding dragonflies.  I believe that a true sign of the health and vitality of a community is how the children are incorporated into its life and activities.

Passage of Transformation for Sage | Fall 1994

While living in Japan in 1993 , I received word that a friend of mine had been arrested.  Upon my return to Bolinas I found a lot of grief and unsettled energy concerning the path Sage's life had taken.  It seemed appropriate to create a ritualized mask performance for the community that would address these issues and emotional states.

In planning outdoor events, you always hope for a clear, sunny, windless day.  Unfortunately, the day of the ritual dawned grey, with a fog that hung over the beach like a low ceiling.  At first I was disappointed, but the result of such weather was that on a Sunday afternoon, the beach was deserted.  The performance became a true community moment, for the only people on the beach that afternoon were the ones that came to be present for Sage’s event. 

Memorial Altar for David

Commissioned by Davids sister one year after his death. Includes some of Davids favorite things, 24 inches high by 14 inches. 

Healing Hands, Healing Hearts

Public art in Stinson Beach, California. 18 inches wide, 40 inches tall. Mixed Media.