I was the first guest early autumn morning and at the Ryoanji Zen garden.

My hands reached for the sketchbook, opening it on my lap. I witnessed my right hand drawing thin pen lines on a white page – that turned out  to be stones.


An image of a frail soul glided from the right-hand side, looking down at the stones and me and the sketchbook. My father, dead for a few days, was drifting into the ancient garden and drawing.

ryoanji drawing 2014

A few weeks later, at my studio, I gazed at wooden blocks 15X15X3 waiting for me since summer to do something with them. I was impatiently carving with a knife into the wood, but shortly leaving it discouraged.

Thus, I went around organizing things – sometimes it comforts.

An electric engraver I got years ago, suddenly revealed itself. I have never used it.

I hastily began burning deep into the wood block: dots, shapes, lines.

The smell of burning firewood filled the air. Cloud-like thoughts about my father’s chemistry vessels, ancient clay wine containers and the question if I would prefer to be burnt after death…

amphora for the dead 1 nona orbach 2015

amphora for the dead 2 nona orbach 2015


My hands, astonished, as they found a path that transformed my being through fire, pen, images, and a name for a new alchemical process – series.

An Amphora for the Dead.


Memory and Oblivion 

Mending Tools 


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