School News

Greg Thatcher Launches Kickstarter Project

Teachers and staff at Maharishi School are encouraged to pursue personal and professional development. To that end art teacher and chair of the Art Department, Greg Thatcher, has launched a Kickstarter project to support a one month intensive in Painswick, Gloucester, UK.

"Pleine Aire" of the Sacred Yews.
by Greg Thatcher

I have been working on a series of yew tree drawings since 1991 based on the topiary yew trees in St. Mary's Churchyard, Painswick, Gloucestershire, England. Because the drawings are pleine aire, I have to work on location there during the summer months. This is a costly adventure with land and air travel as well as living expenses.

In the past, I have funded these summer drawing trips through grants and art sales. The current art market and economic environment makes this approach challenging: I have to be more creative now to fund my continuing work. This is why I have turned to Kickstarter.

Last summer, I began a new pleine aire drawing and clocked in 130 hours on location in Painswick. The drawing is about half-way finished. With your help this summer, I want to return to England and finish the drawing. I also plan to continue searching for suitable gallery representation as well as press coverage.

My yew tree drawings are the most difficult and rewarding artworks for me because they require me to work in a non-compromising fashion which is demanding and needs great concentration and patience. My drawings are created through direct observation - pleine aire - and what the trees represent outwardly and inwardly. The trees cannot be rendered through photographs. I tried it and it didn't work because the spacial relationships are too complicated to be understood except through direct perception and even that is challenging!

Each tree is comprised of its own vast galaxy of spacial relationships which make up its basis. Capturing these relationships helps me to tell each tree's story and express its essence. In this way, I feel I am a spokesman for these silent, magnificent trees. You are welcome to go to my website for more information on the trees: www.gregthatchergallery.com.

Go to Kickstarter to read more about the project.

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