Here and Now

By Mole

Mean Mary

Say hello to Mean Mary (with tiny eyes), created by double-walled clay pottery artist Tracy Ameen of Wheel Works Art Studio. This sculpture was based on a 6’ tall gun-slinging, cigar-smoking woman of the Civil War era. Other works by Tracy can be found in the Smithsonian Institute, The White House, and museums worldwide. I’ve long wanted to meet Tracy, but didn’t know how acclaimed she was until doing research for this blip.

I snapped some dilapidation shots in the Chagrin Falls Park neighborhood where I voted in the primary election today. This 99% African American enclave has an interesting history which I’ll save for another blip. Today it’s a tiny semi-rural community of financially very poor, wonderful peace-loving people and a few crack houses. And Tracy lives in the heart of it in a 3-story house, with 4 generations of her family and her studio.

I saw the door was wide open. Brakes, turn, park. In I went. I met Tracy, daughter Arielle, one granddaughter ZZ, and Sparkie, ZZ’s toy dog. Tracy was a delight to meet. She graciously showed me around, answered questions, and invited me to keep in touch. And she offered me private pottery classes. We discovered we have similar but different auto-immune conditions, so hers being much more delibitating, she can now only do private classes.

Extra: I had set aside a bowl I wanted to buy before Tracy arrived on the second floor (combo showroom and house kitchen). I told Tracy that among all the artists’ work there, I kept gravitating to those with the tiny stamp on the bottom. You guessed it. It was hers.

The naked truth of how lives have been impacted by racism, poverty, and disease has touched me deeply again today. Even more astounding is how courageous, talented, loving souls like Tracy rise above and bring beauty into this sometimes mean world.

Thanks if you got this far reading.

And thanks in advance for leaving only non-political comments.

Many thanks to Riwaka7 for hosting TT this month. :)

Hope to catch up on your blips but a bit in slow mo again today.


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