Doreen Clay

Image 9 of 10

The Lighthouse The Point Arena Lighthouse, built in 1870, is the tallest lighthouse on the west coast at 115 ft tall – except for its twin, the Pigeon Point Lighthouse. In 1906 the San Francisco earthquake caused structural damage to the former, and her original sloping tower was replaced by a company who made smokestacks, so she no longer mirrored her twin. The stalwart Lighthouse overlooks all the activity in the sea, ships that sail, ships that break on the rocks, and all the creatures therein, without judgment or the ability to do anything but shine a light for those who can be found. My drawing encompasses all of hopes and dreams of sailors who are trying to go somewhere by sea, but inevitably, are bound by the earth. The large sailing ship is the USS Rodgers, the ship my great grandfather sailed from San Francisco to the Arctic to find a lost ship, the USS Jeannette. While he survived, most of the men on the first ship perished from the impossibly harsh conditions. Earth and her seas here are reflected in the line in the Eagles’ song, Hotel California: “You can check out any time you like, but you can never leave.”