I first painted the Festival of Lights in 1991. Through the years, many people asked me if it would ever be printed as a serigraph. In October of 1999, in collaboration with Aurora Serigraphics, I began making the serigraph. I developed the image from the painting and made changes. The technique of printing layers of alternating opaque and transparent colors has given the colors more intensity and added more details. The serigraph has slowly developed over these months into a work that is based on the painting but unique in its own way. I drew a stencil for each of the 46 colors printed.
Here are some of my thoughts about this image:
It is a dark night with a star-filled sky. Tiny lights are seen on the distant hillsides, gradually becoming figures carrying candles as they come closer to the foreground of the painting.
Since 1967, the beginning of my work in art, I began making sketches of marches and processions in many forms and contexts. This image of the FESTIVAL OF LIGHTS began developing in the last four years.
I thought about liturgical processions I had seen. I remembered walking with groups in candlelight for peace in Central America. The symbol of candles shining in the dark night is powerful to me. Star-filled nights are images that help give me a sense of the place we are in the universe.
My original thought was that this would be a procession of children from every city and town. The children would bring light and peace to the world. They would gather from many places, joining an unending procession towards peace and nonviolence for all children of the world.