A word from the artist


Come forward with peace and love. I respectfully ask that after you have viewed these drawings and paintings that you contact the artist, with questions, comments, suggestions for future paintings or tips to improve as a painter. If you see a painting and you are moved one way or another, please share those words and emotions with me. If you are not interested in a correspondence you may write to me without giving your last name and without a return address however any snail mail received will be regarded as private and kept in confidence. If you work for another organization and want to get something specific done for free, feel free to contact me

Darren Morris #236425; PO Box 900; Portage, Wi 53901

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Darren Morris, paintings and explanations

This a is a self portrait painted with Acrylics on Bristol paper... As a young man (younger), I was very much concerned how I looked to myself and others. Before I allowed my high tension wires to burst forward, I could not see the beauty thick, natty cables sprouting out. I was coming from a place of darkness. Physically, mentally, socially, & spiritually. I was searching for a new path, and when Jah touched my heart and called me Rastafari, I ran to him. I struggled with my identity for awhile, I could not see the beauty in which Jah had worked on me and in me. I was put in the hole at Waupun Corr. Inst., and learned that Jah can reach anyone at anytime, and in many ways. For me, Jah sent Peggy. I was in a place that was crushing me, I needed someone to stand up and speak for me, to say what I could not say. Some years before, I had read a book by Anais Nin called Collages, and in the book it was talking about how isolation is like Spanish moss, it suffocates the tree it hangs on. I was suffocating... I was losing my breath! At another part, she said that a person can reach a state of such depression that words can no longer serve them, and there's nothing to be said, so they bark. That was a power filled statement. Emerging from that darkness to enter another, I had just begun to let my hair grow, and this did not fit my mental image. It did not reflect who I was. One day medita¬ting on something Peggy said to me, (Somethings must be private), I realized that I was looking at this new stage of life with eyes & perspective of the former. So I sat down and wrote out what was the new perspective, what concepts were involved & evolving. Partaking in a special reasoning session with I & I chalice, I painted the self portrait, seeing I natty beauty for the first time. From out of the darkness came light. One Love, One Breed,
AboveAbove Is a photograph of me & my son, Daren I & II...
When I was about 13 or 14, a situation arose that called for medical treat­ment. When I had a chance I asked the doctor if I'd be able to have kids. He said, most likely not! While playing football, the cup I was wearing was defective. I got hit and a piece of the plastic -was impaled in a place Jah did not design for pain. A few years later, this girl I was dating told me she was pregnant. At the time, she was 19 and had a handsome little boy, who at times, I spent time with. Just me & him, trips to the park, the mall, or family gatherings where he could play with my little cousins about his age. I wanted a son, but never thought I could have one. When she told me this I became angry, I was sure, (almost sure), she had cheated on me.
I said one of the worst things I could have said. I asked, How do you know it's mine? I want a Blood Test! At the time, I was 17 and really didn't under­stand how bad I had hurt her with that. I had never told her of my accident.
Within a few weeks, I was in the Brown County Jail, (November 10, 1994). She brought my son to see me, it was at that moment I realized just how bad my situ­ation was, and just how many people were affected. I'm looking at this beautiful, healthy, baby boy. My son, all working parts. They had him all wrapped and bundled up. After peeling back all those layers of blankets, I looked & seen these long socks, as if they had slipped off. I seen his foot, and knew at that moment, this is my son. I wear a size 15 shoe, and have always been teased about how long my feet were, at least while I was a kid. Feet that long, he had to be my son.
For the first 5 years of his life, I seen him 3 times a week. When he first started, walking, his Mother brought him to see me, and he would take off running, arms stretched out, yelling Daddy. There's nothing better than that. Unfortunately, I do not get to see him like that anymore. I'm lucky if I see him once a year now. He's too busy to write, and I'm lucky if I catch him once a month over the telephone. When I begin making my bid for Justice, I had to ask myself, what do I want him to learn from me? Thinking that if I ever were blessed to some day be freed, and to be with him; I wanted to be someone that could be a source of good fruits. I had to change who I was and how I seen myself and how I viewed the world, and in here that's not easy. You'd think that the Correctional Officers would encourage positive change, & personal growth, hence "Correctional i.e. Rehabilitation". I misunderstood, they do not represent that form of correction.
They are correction rods, a source of pain & punishment, and when I began trying to change, this only attracted the attention of my over-seers. I endured, I stayed the course, because I want my son to know, no matter the outcome, or which obstacles I faced, I did not give up. It would be much easier in so many ways to live out the saying, when in Rome... I have this dream, that one day I will walk free from this place, and I'll be able to see and hear that same joy in my son's eyes & voice, as I did when he was a kid. To give my son a hug outside of prison, away from the unblinking eye in the sky, to have him proudly introduce me as his Father. The man that overcame the odds. I walk my path in hopes it leads to that reality coming true. I seek ways to improve his life and the lives of others. Unfortunately, many of us need help doing this. Growing kids need things, overworked, down-pressed, stressed out, unappreciated Mothers need help. Eventually, I'd like to see it come to pass, that we'll be able to use donations and other resources to help out, to lift some of that burden...

Number two , above, Is a 9x12 on canvas paper. If I remember correctly, (Acrylic). It's not an artist original, I was so moved, by the concept, I had to do my own version...Among Rastas, we often exercise the concept of I & I, which carries the power filled reality of I AM never alone, for I stand in Jah love. Jah stand with me. Who can defeat me when I stand along side the almighty? In the Bible, in the book of Exodus, I & I, (Jah's chosen people), were brought out of bondage, protected and kept strong by the mighty right arm of Jah. In the book of Revela¬tion, we learn that the Church is the bride and is to be married to the Jah Jah, Rasta. Jah tell us to move, we move, without concerning ourselves with how will we step off this cliff and survive. Rasta over stand Jah will not allow his people to be destroyed (utterly). I&I also mean at all times. All Rastas around the world. The I-ya man, the I-natty dread Rasta, the ceptic dread men, the bald head Rasta, Rasta in every form, shape, color, dark & light, over-standing. Are pushing, striving, to face I & I from down pression, to free them who can not free him & herself.
There is only one aim, one destiny for Rasta Man; therefor, I am never alone. At times I need to remind myself of that. As I sit in the Viper pit, and I see them bald head, locks, & dreads all around me, but I don't see I self, I struggle, I love being reflected in them. I push and push, nothing seems to move. He which send the fiery darts of doubt & isolation, in short I solation, I need to believe that even when I can't see I & I, I & I is there. Today, Man sees all his hopes and aspirations crumble before him. He is perplexed and knows not whether he is drifting. But he must realize that the solution to his present difficulties and guidance for his future action is the Bible. Unless he accept with clear conscience the Bible and it's great message, he cannot hope for salva¬tion. For myself, I glory in the Bible. No matter how you view the Bible, whether it is literally the word of Jah, (truth) for you or just a book of collected stories, One can read it & grow positively from it's message. As the Bible put simply is: Basic Instructions Before Leaving Earth...

Number three is a 3x5, (by my best guesstamation) card on bristol paper, acrylic paint...
This image was me experiencing peace. I never really liked the cold, but I could appreciate the snow. It was funny, I had an all white pit bull my Father gave me. She use to chase snow flakes in our back yard. There was this large tree that seem to come alive when the leaves fell off. The setting is a little different, it felt more in line with how I felt. Nature was a safe place, but where we stayed, nature was a fleeting concept. My Great Grandfather was a gardener for fun £ food, and the few conversations we had, were usually about something related to nature. In this place were nothing is natural and rarely peaceful, the walls hold, the spirit of anger £ depression...

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