Pat Owoc

Pat Owoc explores memory, both real and invented, and land, both real and imagined, as she creates impressionistic dream-like landscapes. Owoc’s work allows her to revisit, reinterpret, and reinvent the memory of growing up under an endless prairie sky. Even though she left the prairie as a young girl to attend college and has lived and worked in a large metropolitan area for all her adult life, memory of the land remains and is a foundation for her work. Owoc is active in a number of professional and arts organizations. She retired from a career as a high school counselor before embarking on a second career in the arts. Owoc lives in St. Louis, Missouri, USA.

Memory-as far-reaching as a prairie horizon and as sharp and personal as warm earth beneath bare feet. Details of childhood and of prairies and of growing up under an endless sky are at once sharp and waning. Creating work based on reverence for land and for individuals who roamed, or owned, or revered the land means revisiting, reinterpreting, and reinventing memory. I find that my having been on that land is now of historical interest to those remaining, a reality I had not foreseen. I’ve been away too long to still be a part of that land even though it will always be a part of me.

Were there buffalo,
or did I dream them?
I see them now
on quick-run trips.
But were they there,
south of the house,
when I was young?
Or, were they alive
in stories my parents told?
All I know for sure is
that the hollows remain,
the shapes made by
dust-bathing bison.
Depressions grassed over
— ghostly evidence.