July 29, 2008

The Excellent Art of Silvia Cabib

I write a monthly column on wellness for Louisville's Today's Woman magazine. One of my pleasures each month is opening the new issue to see how artist Silvia Habib has translated my words into an illustration. Every month I think, Oh, this is the best one ever! Somehow, each month she captures not only my text but my spirit.

The picture of a quilter above, for instance, is in the July issue. My essay is about sewing machines and what makes a house a home and how we get surprised by things we think we know well. Most any professional illustrator could show the first two, but not many can make concrete a concept like surprise.

The magazine had a get-together in early December last year. I asked if she were coming, because I very much wanted to meet her. "No," was the reply. "She's in Israel."

Hmm. I suppose if my options for December were a get-together or a trip to Israel, I too would choose the latter. But at the party I learned that she wasn't visiting Israel; she lives there.

How I'd love to meet the woman who seems to see into the corners of my mind. How else could she have remembered that I grew up on an island and have known that I'd love to see a seagull on my quilt? Silvia does with art what I sometimes do with writing: puts in little gifts that may not be visible to everyone but that to the right person mean the world.

You can see more of her art on her webpage.

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