Apr 6 2012

Letters from the Wasteland

Some words ‘taste better’ than other words.

Yes, ‘taste’… hold them on your tongue.
Press them against your palate like a toffee.
That is the way to taste words.
I love words.

Words like Westenwind (which is far nicer than the English ‘West wind’)
Kaleidoscoop (sounds the same in both languages)
Wasteland (which is an almost magical word. The dictionary says in Dutch:
‘woestenij’ but when you translate the word ‘waste’ it says ‘verkwist.’
‘Verkwist land’ comes more close to ‘wasteland.’)

You will find all those words in my post and/or art today.


(You can click on each image to enlarge for a better view)


(Size: 25 x 21 cm - 9.8 x 8.3 inch)


Harde westenwind

doet de wolken tuimelen


Strong wind from the West

makes the clouds twirl and tumble



I made this ‘canvas’ last week. It’s not really a canvas but a cardboard panel,
which I covered with paper that has a linen structure.

I wrote a haiku to go with it for ‘Haiku my Heart Friday.’
This weekly ‘event’ is hosted by Rebecca from Recuerda Mi Corazon.
In for more haiku? Find the list of participants here.


I had the word ‘Wasteland’ on my mind (and in my small notebook
that I keep to jot down ideas, words and quotes) for a while now.
It was just waiting for the right idea to come along.
That idea came a weeks ago…

I’m working on a series of ‘letters’.
I cut words and (parts of) sentences from an old book (Fairy tales by
Hans Christian Andersen
) and combine them to form different ‘letters’.
The art pieces are the size of a postcard. I work on loose sheets of paper,
and glue the pieces into a journal later. Here’s the journal I bound for that.

(Size: 17 x 12 cm – 6.7 x 4.7 inch)


View of the spine – I used the Coptic binding stitch.


Letter from the Wasteland #1

(Size: 16 x 11 cm - 6.3 x 4.3 inch)


Letter from the Wasteland #2

(Letter ‘found’ by highlighting certain words on the underlying book page…)

The golden paint (watercolour) gives a strange effect. When viewed straight,
it looks a bit brown or grey, but when you turn the page a bit, the gold begins
to shimmer. Aaah, nice!


This reminds me of these lines:

All that is gold does not glitter,
Not all those who wander are lost…

Some of you will know these lines maybe…
I’m really curious which of you recognize this phrase -
do you know who wrote this?
Let me know by leaving two (or four ;) ) initials in your comment.

(If this sounds cryptic to you, you don’t know the phrase, ha!)


Enjoy the (long) weekend dear ones!
Happy Easter!

34 Responses to “Letters from the Wasteland”

  • Chevrefeuille Says:

    Hallo Marit, wat een mooi blog-item. Mooie plaatjes en een fijne haiku. Dank je wel.

    Have a good weekend and a wonderful Easter.

  • johanna Says:

    Wat een prachtig beeld : tuimelende wolken , grandioos en heel poetisch.
    Je haiku is weer schitterend en je werk deze week echt prachtig. En wat is taal toch inspirerend.
    Dank weer voor deze inspirerende bijdrage.
    Fijne Paasdagen gewenst door Johanna

  • Hazel Says:

    Is that a woman on the lower right corner of the first image? Beautiful haiku!

  • Carol Says:

    Lovely creations ~ collage painting, journal and haiku ~ I do recognize the lines but don’t recall the author ~ thanks, namaste, ^_^

  • spadoman Says:

    But there is so much more to say about these two phrases. I love these journal pages and the stories they can tell. I’ll have to look up that binding style. You are truly an artist in so many ways. Thank you for sharing with us.
    I wonder about words myself. The Grandchildren ask me often, “How did they pick that word to mean what it means?” I make up answers, but tell them I am making up the answers and get them to do it too. I’m not so interested inn the origins as I am the sound and meaning.
    Wasteland isn’t wasted unless you think as a capitalist. The Westwind means the Thunderbeings will come soon and speak to the people, bringing rain, moisture, nourishment for the ‘wasteland’ to flourish.
    “I can taste the word kaleidoscope, feel it in my mouth. I say it over and over. It’s right up there with florescent”, says I.

    Much Peace to you

  • derweduwen Marleen Says:

    is er een manier om je blog naar het nederlands te vertalen aub?
    mijn engels is niet zo goed om alles te begrijpen en dat vind ik spijtig.

  • Julie Tucker-Wolek Says:

    This is amazing! I loveeeeee how you highlighted the words!

  • druga szesnascie Says:

    Shakespeare’s words of course. :)
    I love this project of yours. its austerity, how abstract the pages look. wonderful! and very tempting to taste some of our Polish words this way. thank you for the inspiration.

  • Marit Says:

    Marleen: ik weet dat sommige blogs zo’n ‘translator’ in het zijmenu hebben. Ik weet niet of dat bij mijn blog mogelijk is, maar ik zal er eens naar kijken.

  • Anthony North Says:

    Ah, those kaleidoscope skies are impressive.

  • Patricia Says:

    These are all gorgeous, Marit! I love the color palette and the “wasteland’.

  • Kimberly Says:

    Marit, this is an amazing post…. it makes me want to look at my shelves with fresh eyes, to see if I can see any messages that just might be playing hide and seek in the pages of my books.

    Perhaps the clouds drifting past my garden this morning will be passing over you this afternoon, with only the North Sea and a bit of land between us.

  • Caatje Says:

    Prachtig stemmig werk dit keer. Ja sommige woorden zijn zo mooi. Er vaart hier rond de Waddenzee een schip met de naam Stormmeeuw. Daar krijg ik spontaan droomneigingen van: woeste wind en een vogel die zich er doorheen zweeft, donkerblauwe en grijze tinten. Prachtig.

  • Kim Mailhot Says:

    Oh, how I love this post. You have travelled deep into the wasteland and found many treasure there, Beautiful One. Just like the Fellowship, perhaps ? ;-)
    This is a beautiful beginning to a beautiful book, My Friend.
    Enjoy the winds. May they bring sweetness to you !

  • Lea Says:

    Very strong winds from the West have stirred your creative heart, waiting for the tree that has not yet flowered to come to life again, from this wasteland where your fingers paint the sky in shimmering gold… beautiful dear Marit…

  • Cheryl's Excellent Adventure Says:

    My first thought was Shakespeare but it’s not written in Olde English. So then I guess Robert Frost. Now I have to look it up.

  • Cheryl's Excellent Adventure Says:

    Ok. I looked it up. The phrase “all that glitters is not gold” comes from “Merchant of Venice” by Shakespeare.

  • Lena Says:

    Ik vind je ‘wasteland’ boekje prachtig en origineel! De eerste bladzijden zijn ook geweldig geworden, ben helemaal weg van die met het goud…
    Fijn (paas)weekend meis!!

  • Jenneke Says:

    Ben iedere keer weer very impressed door je blogposts, Marit! Wat ben jij een kanjer met woorden en met taal! En wat maak je mooie dingen. ‘kaleidoscope-sky’….dat vind ik een prachtige klank hebben. En de initialen JRRT….kom ik daarmee in aanmerking voor de hoofdprijs? ;-)

    Fijne (Paas)dagen, Marit!


  • Stephanie Says:

    Love the image that kaleidoscope-sky paints in my mind.


  • Lenora Says:

    kaleidoscope-sky – vivid picture! Wonderful canvas..

  • irrene Says:

    i enjoyed your rich, deep post today, marit. we both looked to the sky and created a haiku this week. love your wasteland book.

  • irrene Says:

    oops, i spelled my name wrong. it’s irene

  • Jess Says:

    i am loving the softness that is coming out in your art…beautiful. yes, jrrt from lord of the rings…i am 95% sure. lol! have a wonderful weekend Marit!

  • Morissa Says:

    What a beautiful book. Great art.

  • derweduwen Marleen Says:

    bedankt dat jij eens wil nagaan voor die vertaler in de zijkant.

  • Grace Says:

    I agree, writing with an eye to make the readers taste your words is to put texture to your writing. Like your canvas you paint, the readers can taste and feel your work ~

  • ~*~ Patty Says:

    LOVE the new direction your artwork is going…found poetry/altered text is so full of surprises and delights as you are sharing with us here!

    prachtige woorden
    I LOVE words too!

    and YES it would be wonderful if our pages were together in Alicia’s BIG book…just knowing we are in the same book is special too!

    Happy Spring Dear One!
    oh and JRRT…some fav quotes AND words!!!

  • Cheryl's Excellent Adventure Says:

    I love words, too. I add them to my canvases too.

  • Nuvofelt Says:

    I’m working with words at the moment too. I love the way they can be used in so many different ways!


  • Chevrefeuille Says:

    Hoi marit, die haiku serie wordt cascading haiku genoemd en is min of meer bedacht door Ramesh Sood.t’s a wonderful way to write haiku. You have to try that once.

  • annie Says:

    Tolkien wrote these fine words.

    I’ve been moved along in my thinking about writing haikus in another language. Your German (?) Haiku inspires me to use this as a technique for learning as I study Spanish.

  • Magical Mystical Teacher Says:

    Wind has a habit of increasing one’s feelings of desolation…

    Will She Forgive Us?

  • Terri Says:

    Marit. I love these ideas, play on words, monochromatic styling on all of these especially westenland I’m in the Featuring gallery. Can’t wait to get mag! Blessings Terri