We are proud to present the Artist of the Month for January & February of 2013, Susan Lirakis who is a prize-winning lifelong photographer living in Center Sandwich. Recently, Lirakis traveled to Tibet and Nepal and is showing her newest work from these travels. On Wednesday, January 30th, at 7:00 p.m., she will present a slideshow glimpse of her recent wanderings in the regions of Kathmandu Valley, Nepal and Lhasa, Tibet through photographic imagery and the sounds of the areas. Of her work, Lirakis says:
When I travel. I am reminded how little I know. what is taken for granted culturally in one area is completely foreign to another. I must relax, be patient, and observe. I like to see, and to find new life. Traveling to Himalaya regions, life seems raw. Death is nearer, so maybe life is too. Ritual is apparent in the greeting of the day through puja and ceremony, music, and the burning of incense and oil, in the act of circumambulation or the turning of the prayer wheel. Sadhus have renounced material life. Some prepare for the day covering their bodies with color and ash, representative of the ephemeral quality of life. Monks practice meditation, chanting, and philosophical debate as part of their education. Children care for children, haul daily water, and attend school if they are fortunate, but are included in all practice. Life and death are both remarkably ordinary and filled with ceremony. effortless mastery seems the desired endeavor. There are many paths to reach it.
Lirakis has exhbited widely, from the Contemporary Arts Forum in Santa Barbara, CA to the Currier Museum in NH, from Haines Gallery in San Francisco to the Danforth Museum in MA, from the Society of Contemporary Photography in Kansas City to the Fremantle Arts Center in Australia. Awards and fellowships for further advancement of her work have been received through the NH State Council on the Arts, the National Endowment for the Arts, the League of NH Craftsmen, the Clowes Foundation, and McLaughlin residency fellowship.