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Winter Snail

Dreamed 1/22/1994, painted 1994, acrylic on canvas, 48 x 41.5", by Jenny Badger Sultan

SNAILS IN A BARREL

I dream I'm at a beach, near an inlet. I am with other people. We have large wooden barrels. One is full of sand and warm water. I stand in it and it is healing for my legs.

Eventually my water cools down and I want to replace it with hot water. I dump it out and find lots of very large (l ft. across) snails. How could they have been in there without my knowing? I throw them out. Maybe a few small ones remain. I fill up the barrel with more hot water and sand.

Acrylic painting, 'Winter Snail', by Jenny Badger Sultan. Click to enlarge

THE PAINTING

I began this painting as a meditation on the symbol of the snail. It seemed very ancient and to signify turning inward--appropriate for winter, when I painted it.

As I painted, I had a second beach dream:

I am on a beach with Hank, my husband. I am about to give birth and ask him to catch the baby. The baby's head comes out. It is my son Leon, not looking newborn but about one year old: smiling, lively, full of beaming energy, radiant. It is again the image of the hope, the renewal of life.
Center of acrylic painting 'Winter Snail', by Jenny Badger Sultan.

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