Home is Where the Heart is – Community Art Project

NeoRio 2020: Home Exhibit and Artist Roundtable (originally published Sept. 2020)

The topic of “home” has provided an impetus to reflect on the past six months of pandemic limitations. Being home more has been challenging while also being a time to reflect on and stretch personal boundaries. We live in a small house and with all three of us working remotely, the outdoors has beckoned me more during this uncertain time. It’s as if “home” is more expansive now than simply the confines of the house in which we live. Whenever I’ve felt overwhelmed by fear and isolation, going for a hike, jog, bike, working outside or meditating at my labyrinth have provided needed solace and reflection.

Before the pandemic, the outdoors was something literally “outside” my house. Since March, my concept of home is so much bigger and so much more rich. The generosity Mother Nature shares with humans and the example her nature children have modeled have helped me deal with the anxiety of this uncertain time. The main message I’ve learned from animals and plants is to take care of yourself and family. By staying in the present moment and letting go of expectations, each day has been a blessing.

The imagery on my box represents this greater concept of “home” beyond the confines of the house in which we live. Each panel is a span of time: March/April; May/June; July/August, and September. The collaged images are examples of what “being home” has meant to me. The poem on the lid was written by a teacher and went viral during the early lockdown period. Inside the box are Mettá (loving kindness) phrases that have helped me get through the anxiety of these six months. The booklet is created from journal pages generated during hours of self-reflection listening to meditation teachers who explained what we were collectively going through.

Artist Bio

Anne-Marie Emanuelli grew up in Taos and is a 1979 graduate of Taos High School. She earned a B.F.A. from the University of Denver (1983) and an M.S. from Pratt Institute (1989). Travelling and attending schools in France provided exploration of her Franco-American family culture. Professional adventures in Taos range from advertising rep & designer for The Taos News, owner and art director at Emanuelli Advertising Design and, more recently, secondary and university teacher/professor of French, Graphic Design, Computer Applications, English Language Arts and Online Academic Adviser. She recently retired from teaching and is pursuing a passion for mindful meditation. As creative director for Mindful Frontiers LLC, Anne-Marie provides meditation instruction to families, children, teachers and adults. The new venture can be explored at MindfulFrontiers.net.

Anne-Marie lives in Arroyo Hondo with her husband, Bruce Gomez and daughter, Marielle Gomez and the family cat, Princess Gracie. She loves to create all kinds of art, including needlework, crochet, knitting, and home projects such as canning, jamming, cooking and baking. When not creating, Anne-Marie enjoys hiking, jogging, biking and swimming in the beautiful environs of Taos as well as reading, writing, and other mind-expanding pursuits.

Materials: paint, photographs, paper

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