The rocks are red and orange, colors that most of us – if we don’t live in the U.S. Southwest – are unfamiliar with. Rocks, we think, are supposed to be gray and slate.
But in Zion National Park in Utah, the rocks are not dull and drab – they glow warmly in the desert sun, and their very color gives us the idea that we are someplace unusual, someplace different, someplace with a touch of the magical about it.
The artwork, Zion’s Great West Canyon, focuses on these rocks, taking the viewers up to the heights and out of the valley. Painted in an impressionistic, brushy style, Zion’s Great West Canyon inspires us to get outside the norm and seek the roads that others don’t bother to look for.
While still part of Zion National Park, Zion’s Great West Canyon is in the “backlands” of the park, and most people don’t see it. From your perspective as viewer, if you look at the flat peaks in the back of the painting, and imagine going over them, you’ll be in the park proper, the part that most people see (and it is beautiful to see!) and are content to stay in.
But if you get in the mood to get away from the crowds – and Zion, which is reported to get 4.5 million visitors a year, gets crowded – then it’s worth looking for alternatives, and Zion’s Great West Canyon is one of them. The road is winding and steep, not something that can be driven quickly, but the very slowness allows one time to see and fully take in the view.
There are many parallels to life’s journey itself: when we stay with the crowds, we may feel safe and secure, but then again, we see the same things that the crowds see, and that not very well because there is so much hubbub and activity and noise.
It’s only when we get away, on a road that not many take, that we see sights that not many see.
Featured in 23 Fine Art America groups.
May 8th, 2019
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