Amy Larson Hunter
In January of 2020, my husband and I moved from the United States to Saudi Arabia with our two small children. Not knowing what was in store for me as a woman in Saudi Arabia, part of our agreement to move involved me pursuing a formal education in art. I began the MFA program in Fine Art, Painting in the fall of 2020.
Three days after we arrived in Saudi Arabia, my husband was sent away on an assignment that would ultimately last for 6 months. I was left to alone to navigate life in a new country on lockdown with two small children. Quickly, I became overwhelmed. Overwhelmed with new information, overwhelmed with keeping two small children entertained, overwhelmed with dishes, and mostly overwhelmed with worry.
At the start of the MFA program, I had no idea what I wanted to do with art. I only knew I loved it. As I began to paint and choose objects for assignments, I noticed I gravitated toward simple objects and simple compositions. Something about spending time with an item as simple as an apple, or an imperfectly constructed paper flower provided a sense of calm and reprieve from the overwhelm of information and worry that flooded my mind.
I have long been intrigued by the way art can preserve a time or a place. Over the course of my study, I’ve found that, for me, it also preserves a sense of simplicity in a mind and a world overwhelmed with information and worry.