Handheld Objects Hold Power
Don’t go it alone. Take one with you.
June Woest longs to travel and tires of doomsday weather predictions. She makes sculptures that are the subjects for her prints on glass, metal, paper, and clay. She gifts her audience a picture of hand-held objects that clean up the air and encourage an atmosphere of life-long, outdoor adventure,
She teaches art history and visual culture and possesses skills in ceramics, photography and printmaking.
Rain or Shine
I create heavy weather travel remotes to imagine myself a master manipulator of climate change. I long to travel and disruptions due to weather are happening so disproportionately that peoples’ jobs and daily lives are routinely affected. Recently, a day of blustery winds in South Texas, set into motion a cascade of events that sidelined 1500 American Airline flights nationally for four days.
My childhood response to climate comes from having grown up in Kansas, on prairie land my grandfather homesteaded with his team of six plow horses. It was Kansas where I walked in corn and wheat fields. I also stepped over bumpy outcroppings of limestone rock and heard family begrudge Juniper trees as weeds because of their thirsty root systems.
Planning for what the weather might bring tomorrow in Kansas, implied a long look at one grand aspect of nature we could control- fear. I faced tornados. I grew up weather hearty and watched my elders resist everyday wind storms wearing headscarves. I wasn’t aware then of how responsible they felt for the task before them- growing enough food to feed the world. I was reminded there were children starving in China and to clean my plate. I learned to watch the weather, the sky. Being observant, I learned lessons by looking, listening, touching the rain, wind, heat, and snow.
Where I live now and call home is Houston, Texas. Most every day is soaked in humidity and heat. This year, 2021 was different...I saw fronds on tall palms blanketed in snow. The Texas grid system, wasn't prepared either for those four days of freezing cold, temperatures. Even the leaves on my indoor African violet suffered frostbite. And the years before that, you ask? A once-in-a-hundred-year flood happened two years in a row with a once in five-hundred-year flood following those.
The question remains for me whether getting in a car when it starts to rain is safe. Our bayou waters can rise quickly in freeway underpasses and racing canoe are dangerous during street rescues.
With extreme weather more common, normal travel has become more complicated. Factor in a world-wide health pandemic, and my desire to travel is more like planning an escape. It's why making weather changing remote controllers hold an appeal- they allow me to imagine the very best is possible.
My Travel Plans Have Changed