21 - Nanci Hersh

The Art 


“Chrysalis 2” ©NanciHersh
Etching, aquatint with gold embossed rubber stamp
image size: 6” x 4”, paper size” 15” x 11”; 

Nanci Hersh writes..

A Chrysalis is the stage of a butterfly between larvae and the winged adult.  It is a period of enclosure…of going within…of transformation. I began this small piece as a demonstration for my Printmaking Class at Monmouth University in Long Branch, NJ. What began as an exercise in etching and aquatint became a very personal visceral response following surgery and reconstruction for breast cancer 

The lines of the Chrysalis and those wrapping around her were a metaphor for the physicality of surgery and reconstruction. They also suggest fluidity, an unraveling that comes with knowing that these feelings, and this situation, are temporal. Like a caterpillar, that weaves a cocoon around herself and emerges, with time, adorned with wings as a butterfly.

My Music

Khrusallis* (for hackbrett, 4 voices, thumb cymbals, percussion, piano, thunder drum)

This artwork jumped out at me – it seemed to have so much to say. I was intrigued by the circular lines around the figure, protecting her, as with the golden marks. In our communication, Nanci’s described her intuitive process in making this piece. I was particularly impressed by her conviction and inner knowing of the temporal nature of her chrysalis experience. I wanted to evoke the courage of her conviction.

I titled my music “Khrusallis” ,  the Greek word for chrysalis, stemming from the Greek “khrusos” for ‘gold’. I was trying to wrap the her in the etching, in a musical cucoon of protection, whilst she was transitioning through that temporal phase.