I had to share this post, left as a comment, by a member, over on the new ZNE Network:
"As a trembling newbie to the art world I wholeheartedly express a sentiment of sheer joy at seeing such a warm welcome to a complete stranger... brings to mind the saying "be not forgetful to entertain strangers for some have thereby entertained angels unaware". Im no angel but if I were its great to get your feathers fluffed!! "
At the time that the founding members (the Fondante Tier of membership) decided to expand the group and follow a dream of creating a supportive environment for other independent artists, this is exactly the type of community we envisioned. Those of us who have been members for years, know that ZNE is a special place. But it sure does ruffle our multitude of feathers to hear a new member say such great things.
The ZNEart.com emails appear to be working now, thanks to the fabulous Julie O'Neil who managed to double our disk space - or bandwidth - or something like that. Well, anyway - she fixed the problem. Thanks Julie!
Anyone who noticed this post on Chel's blog the other day should find it no big suprize that one of the main ZNE accounts appears to have passed out and is not receiving mail at all.
Actually, we suspect it is receiving it, and hiding it somewhere, we just haven't found any of it yet.
In any case, until further update, please note that any emails sent to ZNE at any of the email addresses that end in @ZNEart.com are being held in cyberspace and are not being received right now.
A better bet in the meantime is to send emails to:
ZNE marketing @yahoo.com (obviously, with no spaces). Chel will try and check that email address once a day.
We'll update when all is well again in the Land of ZNE emails.
Ok, ok ~ that's Chel's OLD studio. Stay tuned next month for a new ZNE Home Tour - of Chel's NEW studio! She's been moving boxes, sorting ephemera and organizing endless glitter for weeks now. Woo Hoo!
This picture however was featured on this week's ZNE Book Club post - want to know why, see more or Chel's old studio, or learn more about what we are doing?
In the night of death, hope sees a star, and listening love can hear the rustle of a wing. ~Robert Ingersoll
Stevie Christine McMoyler
September 23, 1987 - April 19, 2007
Brianna Lauren Grant
Jan. 12, 1990 - June 15, 2007
In the Spring and early Summer of 2007, the San Francisco Bay Area artistic community's bright future dimmed for an unbearable moment, when we lost two beautiful young women. On April 19, Dublin artist Gina Gabriell suffered the devastating loss of her 19 year old daughter Stevie Christine McMoyler to brain cancer, and on June 15, Danville artist Iva Wilcox suffered an equal devastation when her 17 year old daughter Brianna Lauren Grant died from complications as a result of a very rare disease - MDS - Myelodysplastic Syndrome.
One of the profound gifts inherent in being connected to the artistic community at large is the unilateral support offered during times of need. However, when losses such as those of Stevie and Brianna occur - it is difficult to imagine a gesture that would be apropriate or sufficient.
variaZioNE - (better known as ZNE), headquartered in the SF East Bay (Pleasanton) is an international art group with over 1,000 members worldwide. Pacific Coast Mestieri (formerly The Pleasanton Craft Mafia) is the California component of the ZNE group - and PCM has over 100 active members primarily located here in the East Bay. Stevie and Brianna's mothers are both members of Pacific Coast Mestieri (and ZNE by association). When Stevie and Brianna died, members of ZNE and PCM responded enmasse with a desire to do something to honor the memory of these beloved daughters of the creative community.
To provide an immediate response, friends of Iva Wilcox -Kitty Forseth, Colleen Moody and ZNE Member Sylvia Anderson organized a charity auction - Angels for Brianna - to honor Brianna's memory. That auction started today - Sunday July 8, 2007. You can learn more by viewing the post directly below this one.
In addition, out of the desire to create a lasting and permanent remembrance of these remarkable young women - the Hope Sees a Star Memorial Mosaic initiative, was born.
The mosaic will incorporate a butterfly design, and will be inscribed:
In Memory of
Stevie and Brianna
Forever Loved Daughters
of the Creative Community
We are also pleased to be working with the Oakland Zoo to locate an apropriate installation spot for the memorial. Our hope is to have it permanently installed somewhere in the Zoo's Butterfly Conservation Garden.
The Oakland Zoo Butterfly Garden is at total of 120 square feet of blooming habitat for butterflies, caterpillars and other pollinators.
As a group, ZNE/PCM will also be making a donation to the Oakland Zoo Butterfly Garden, in memory of Stevie and Brianna - in conjunction with the memorial installation.
The Hope Sees a Starmemorial effort is a huge undertaking, and yet it is only a tiny gesture on our group's part, an expression of our shared grief - and the knowledge that Stevie and Brianna will live forever in the hearts of those who loved them, and the memories of those (some of whom they never met) whose lives were touched by their stories.
In order to make this memorial a reality, PCM/ZNE will fundraise through the end of the year, and in accordance with Laurel True's schedule - the creation of the mosaic will begin in January.
Stevie's and Brianna's families will be invited to provide information about the girls' favorite colors, to incorporate in the design - and they will also have the opportunity to include a special momento of their choosing to represent their daughters and be pressed in to the mosaic memorial.
Our hope is that the memorial will be officially presented in May of 2008 - aproximately one year after the girls' deaths. The aniversary of the death of a loved one is often a highly emotional and painful time for friends and family members. It is our wish that the memorial shall serve as a permanent reminder that these beautiful young women are not forgotten, that their lives are valued, as are the contributions of their mothers to the art community, at large.
We need your help to make this happen.
Please stay tuned to this blog for regular updates, information on fundraising efforts, and volunteer opportunities - all coming soon.
In the meantime, I would like to share with you the communication we have received in regard to this memorial, from Gina Gabriell and Iva Wilcox.
From Gina Gabriell:
I am sitting here in tears. What a beautiful and loving thing to do for our daughters and for our families.
I thank you and oh the words I need escape me, I am just so touched.
Please tell everyone how important and wonderful this is to me...
My daughter was an incredible person and missing her is the hardest thing I have had to do, I am split in half, a mothers heart must have what it must have and there is an empty place inside me that aches, what I would give to have her here with me today.
Stevie was amazing, I know people say that when someone they love dies, but I would say it if she were still alive and driving me crazy with normal teenager stuff.
No one thought she would die, it didn't seem possible, she was so good, so full of potential and she had this thing, I can't describe it, she was vital in so many ways. This world was a better place because she was a part of it and everyone was waiting for her to turn it upside down, change it, fill it up with who she was going to be.
She was gifted, and brilliant, I mean that, she had a very impressive IQ, she just knew things, intellectually and spiritually. She would never brag about it or make anyone feel less than brilliant themselves, she could see the best parts of everyone, she could see the worst too but mostly she knew that people were good.
She told me once, "Mom, we are all one. When one person cries we all carry that sadness, when another person wins a Gold medal it belongs to all of us, we get everything, we are everything" She was right.
She was a nerd through and through but she was beautiful, soulful and loved so much about this life.
Sometimes I was not sure who was the parent, she taught me so many things, gave me so much love, and always tried to make sure I was happy. She stood by me as much as I stood by her. We were inseparable, I still can't find a way to let her go, not sure I ever will, she is my heart.
She didn't like butterflies particularly, she liked snails and turtles. The funny thing is that she had a perfect butterfly birthmark on her arm. Everyone thought it was a tattoo. When she died the butterflies just appeared. The woman who did the flowers for the funeral felt the need to put beautiful hand painted butterflies on long wire stems into the vases of yellow tulips (she loved yellow tulips) They were so beautiful and seemed so right.
One of my relatives bought hundreds of live butterfies to be released at her grave site, it was breathtaking.
We didn't make it a them it just happened, I think it was meant to be. They are the perfect symbol. When she was really sick I use to give her a guided meditation. I would tell her that being sick was just a resting place for her body, it was slowing down and getting ready to sleep so it could change, I told her when she was well again she would emerge strong, and beautiful, she would spread her enormous wings and they would lift her higher than she had ever been, she would do all the things she wanted to do.
I suppose that happened. Just not the way we wished.
Sorry to ramble like this, it just happens.
I am so touched and again so grateful.
M/O The best girl in the whole world, my best Friend, my teacher, my everything, Stevie.
From Iva Wilcox:
Thank you for reaching out to us with your beautiful proposal for a memorial mosaic and local art show and sale.
Your letter touched us and, I cried with your generosity to organize such events.
Brianna would love the idea of a butterfly garden and such a mosaic. And as outgoing as my daughter is, she would have liked to have met Stevie.
Also, thank your members for their kindness in participating in Angels for Brianna. There are many warm and caring artists out there, who I have not met but feel so honored to get to know this way.
I hope we meet so I can give you a hug for what you are doing.
Again, we appreciate all that you are doing in Brianna’s memory and I really do hope to meet you soon.
With much love and hugs....Iva
And finally, I leave you all with these two beautiful images from Stevie's memorial service, and Brianna's memorial service, respectively:
More information, on the Hope Sees a Star Memorial Mosaic project, coming soon. In the meantime:
Click the image above to find out how you can start helping, today!
Well, around The ZNE Studios, that means that the kids are out of school, the temperatures are rising, and the natives are growing restless.
So, we are off to spend some family time in beautiful South Lake Tahoe. I'll be away from email entirely, until next week Monday. Please keep that in mind if trying to get a message to me or hoping for a reply within the next few days. I greatly appreciate your patience - I'll try and catch up as fast as I can when I return!
Please note - in the event of an extremely urgent matter -
ZNE Talkers should be able to contact group moderator Astrid Zucker for assistance.
Website technical emergencies can be directed to Julie O'Neil at tech@ZNEart.com. (Membership activations will take a few days longer than normal.)
Fondante Members may contact Emma, Kris or Julie on the Fondante boards.
Other than that, it is business as usual around here. There WILL be daily / regular updates on: