Recently, I visited my uncle, Cabot Lyford, near Portland, Maine. Cabot is well-known in New England as an artist and sculptor of stone, wood, and bronze. He’s in his late-80s and has retired from sculpturing due to health. Also fairly recently, a film was released about him as part of an ongoing series of film portraits of distinguished Maine artists, Dale Schierholt’s “Cabot Lyford: Portrait of a Man as Artist”. On my visit, I had a chance to share my appreciation for him and my thoughts on the advent of the film. The letter below is my follow-up to him in response to that visit.
July 6, 2014
My Dear Uncle,
It’s been two weeks since seeing you last in Damariscotta. On our brief visit, I attempted to express my appreciation for you and for the honor being given you in the form of Dale Schierholt’s new film, “Cabot Lyford: Portrait of a Man as Artist”. This letter is the result of collecting and refining my thoughts since then which I’d like to share with you now.
Wise people have said we communicate the things we most need to learn. Something increasingly important to me lately is the acknowledgment of value—the core value of oneself and of others—a past and present focus for me.
Two weeks ago I felt I didn’t adequately express two things to you. First is how wonderful and appropriate this film is in tribute to your work. Second is my sense of the significance to you, and to all of us who have experienced your work, of the aspiration you realized early in your career to achieve something beautiful, meaningful, and lasting.