Barbara Lamar and Theresa Bond
The Story
Barbara Lamar
San Antonio, TX
Theresa Bond
Theresa Bond
Social media: @bondartist
“Neruda's Well”
Acrylic on canvas
24" x 36” x 1.25”
Artist Statement: When Barbara and I began texting last August, I learned a great deal about her through our conversations. She shared with me photos that she had taken of landscapes, snippets of poetry, and paintings that she likes. Her cancer journey has been compounded by her husband’s increasing dementia. Her fatigue from radiation - while she continues to work, plus caring for an ailing husband - would be too much for normal people, but in Barbara, I witnessed how strong she has stayed throughout her treatments. The inspiration for the painting came from the poem by Pablo Neruda: "If each day falls inside each night, there exists a well where clarity is imprisoned. We need to sit on the rim of the well of darkness and fish for fallen light with patience." Some might read those lines and find them depressing, but Barbara sees them as hope and that we need to be patient, as the struggle is a long one but there is promise with each step. Barbara has had good news since we first started chatting – it seems that the cancer is in remission!

According to Native American symbolism, the blue heron focuses on the ability to evolve and progress. I painted the blue heron to represent Barbara due to her self-reliance and self-determination. In the painting, with the full moon above, I depicted her as the heron, sitting on the well of darkness patiently waiting for clarity.