Red Heart Blue Heart



Red Heart Blue Heart
By Rebecca Haseltine
© 2017

This body of work began as a simple exploration of the heart as a muscle with an active fluid interior.  A close friend of mine was in the hospital with chest pains last winter, so I spent time in the hospital studying heart anatomy.  I realized I was less familiar with the anatomy of the heart than lots of other parts of the body.  I was reminded that the heart wraps around itself when it is formed in the embryo.  The blood that gushes through the heart is a force that shapes the inside of the heart.  These two things inspired the red heart blue heart pieces.

As I worked, another friend was in the hospital and I thought she might die, so grief became a part of the work.  She didn’t die, and my other friend is fine, but this series is not just about anatomy.  While I worked on this series I was distraught over the recent election and the prospects for the environment, for equal rights, and for health care.  Red heart blue heart is also a blues song about my country.  I’m longing for my country to have one heart.

I return to the dynamic of the heart – she never pauses, really, though there are rests between each squeeze.  It is an intense and perpetual-until-we-die wild animal inside that sustains equilibrium through a rhythmic and spiraling squeeze and receive, open and close, rock and roll.



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