Cumberland: Better Than You Think It Is

On Saturday, Seth and I travelled to Cumberland, MD to see my tiny tree art in the Allegany Arts Council Nature Art Exhibition. I am a big softie for Cumberland. Like most everyone else from Maryland, I would travel with my parents to some point west and stare with wonder at the little old-timey time town with all of the steeples. And, like most everyone else from points east in Maryland, we never stopped. I feel very fortunate to have people in my life that are from that little city. Now I get to go whenever we are visiting the boyfriend's parents (or when I conveniently have art on gallery walls). We get to walk down Baltimore Street and browse through interesting antiques and gaze into th

Fungus

(This one is for fellow artist and nature lover, Bridgette.) In May of this year I, along with 14 or so others, finished our initial Master Naturalist training. During the two months of classes we learned about plants, birds, fish, insects, reptiles, amphibians, mammals, geology, ecology . . . . but the class that has really stuck with me is fungus. Yes, we had a three hour session on fungus, and it was awesome. It turns out that mycorrhizal fungus is running the world, secretly, underground, everywhere. It blew my mind, like thinking about space or the deep ocean or death. I won't go too deep here for fear of misrepresenting facts that should really be learned from an expert or book or at

Seminoles & Mexicans

I've begun work on a new Border Crossing. It is inspired by the simplicity of traditional Seminole Indian patterns and the complexity of some of the designs we often find in Mexico. In middle school, I had the privilege of participating in the creation, no, the reawakening really, of a faith that was (and still is) based on traditional Native American teaching. The spiritual leader of that most diverse of tribes just happened to be a Seminole man. This is a nod to him, his family, and all they have taught me (and still teach me). Why Mexico? Well, outside of the fact that I simply am in love with the Mexican aesthetic, I can't help but watch, and read, and be disappointed by our country's

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© 2020 by Magan Ruthke

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