Querencia

Querencia

from 135.00

All prints are handmade by Peter Ralston on archival rag paper with an archival ink set.

Small Matted Prints - This collection is printed on 8.5 x 11 inch sheets, matted, ready to be framed.

Sightings - This limited edition (LE) collection of 64 images is from Peter's 1997 book, Sightings. This edition is limited to 25 prints of each image plus five artist proofs (AP). They are printed on 17 x 22 inch sheets.

The Master Prints - This limited edition (LE) print is limited to 50 prints of this image plus ten artist proofs (AP). They are printed on 24 x 36 inch sheets.

Custom sizes of this image are available by special request. 

The story behind Querencia

Years ago I ran across the Spanish word querencia in a book by William F. Buckley, with whom I had developed a friendship after we worked together on a piece for Architectural Digest. I asked him what it meant and am eternally glad I did, as the word has become something of a totem, a core value for me.

The way he explained it, querencia speaks to those places that trigger an absolute, complete and instinctive sense of belonging and home. It is all about the places we feel most elementally safe and secure in our hearts.

Maine is my querencia. As is the boat. Not to mention our kids. And I certainly found it when I met my wife, Terri.

One day back in the mid-90’s, a very dear friend and I were walking around an island, skirting the head of a little cove when I found this Great Blue Heron skull lying in the rockweed. I had been to that cove numerous times over the years and had, more often than not, seen these regal birds stalking their prey ever so slowly around the perimeter.

Thus, this particular bird died in a favorite place…it had doubtless spent much time in this cove and here its particularly distinctive skull came to lie, in one of the bird’s querencias, hence the photograph’s title.

I loved my friend so much that I gave her the skull on the spot, and I cannot think of another person to whom I would have given this treasure. A couple of years after she died, I got this skull back, and it is, indeed, ever a treasure.

I think many of us can relate to the concept of querencia. I recently thought of it when I read another friend’s short story, the last line of which asks, “how does a heart – tired, traveled, and toughened – find its way home?”

I offer no real answer to her question as to “how,” but I know, and I know she knows, that faith, love and time all tend to lead us to that place we can truly call home.

This, if we are very fortunate, is the way of things.

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