Night Forest: Understory is the first book in a proposed series called the Adventures of Wren.
Each image is a large scale painting and when exhibited together with audio the installation produces a feeling of transporting inside a children’s fantasy book. The project riffs on moving and still image from storybook to AR/VR.
These paintings/story are at a draft stage in progress. The project concept is based on traditional children’s book illustrations and the Pacific westcoast ecoscape.
The Adventures of Wren
“The Forest knows if you believe it is alive”, chirped Wren, “everything is magic in there, especially at night. That is where things happen”
Wren found her nest amongst the great cedars and nestled down for sleep. She was tired from her arduously busy day and was looking forward to transitioning to her nighttime persona.
She loved this part of her life when her bird body rested and her human form took on adventures. Out of her hibernaculum she emerged.
And into the Night Forest Tunnel she went.
Wren’s crepuscular friends followed her. On the other side Wolf asked her if she would like to help search for the Watersong Boy. The boy had been lost somewhere in Deep Time and his disappearance had caused the forest creek to dry up. They wanted desperately to listen to the effervescent sounds of his song once again.
They prepared for their adventure into Deep Time.
First, they met with Eagle, White Deer, Salmon and Owl to plan the night guardian watch and plot their route with a variety of Time Maps.
Next they dawned their Night Masks and equipped themselves with divining rods to source the Watersong Boy. Eagle watched over as Wren went deeper into the dense forest.
The rods bent this way and that until they were guided to a grouping of small children playing in the ferns and old lichen logs; the understory of the forest.
“Who are you?” asked Wren.
“We are the Forest Children of Waiting and we can show you how to play in the forest while waiting for adventures to happen.”
They played and played all night by the light of the moon.
The moonbeams took them out of the Anthropocene to where the Watersong Boy was singing. He was beside the rock rings of Deep Time where the water was flowing out a song, clear and pure. Wren asked if he would teach her the songs and so he showed her the melodies that made the water flow.
Soon, the moon was going down and dawn was breaking. They quickly followed the creekside huckleberry path back to the Night Tunnel. They arrived just in time for breakfast on the other side.
Wren sang her new songs the next day and the creek began to flow.
The mythical song was said to cure the non believer into knowing the Forest was indeed alive.
BIG WORDS/NEW VOCAB:
- Divining Rod
- Deep Time