Kristine Arena

Kristine Arena FLOHR/FLEUR/FLOWER
Kristine Arena FLOHR/FLEUR/FLOWER

What did you find most interesting about Daniel Flohr?  I think that his ability to keep such a detailed record of his life during the war was amazing. His observations were detailed enough so that when reading the translation I could picture the scene he was describing. I also found his record to be relatively free from political commentary, and just focused on his daily life and interactions with the people he met. arena-posterHe maintained a serious calm when taking care of other soldiers, whether wounded or sick, which would turn out to be a characteristic that he employed throughout his life. After I researched him (post-American Revolution), I discovered that he had become a minister in Virginia and lived out his life here in the United States.  His background in the war, and later an attempt to become a doctor in Paris before leaving France forever, seem to me to be the beginning of his path to become a healer of a different sort. From a very humble beginning in Europe this young man became a person most beloved in a small rural community; the journey of his life was the most interesting source of inspiration for my project.

How does this project relate to your studio practice?  I work mostly in a style which uses the forms of abstract expression and Impressionism. The Ex Libris project allowed for wide interpretation of the GDF journal, and thus I felt free to use the book art to create my own impression of this young man.  As his name Flohr means flower, I decided to create a book that would take the shape of a flower.  I like the way a flower may unfold and petals give depth, in my book you can see the pages as petals and the whole shape of the book as a flower.  This is how I could interpret the overview of a human life, unfolded as a flower, each petal with layer and depth in  it to express the journey.