Every piece of art has a story. I love learning the meaning behind the art that catches my eye.

Each month I feature a local artist. It’s not unusual for me to post about the artists on my IG account.

Recently a real estate client of mine saw a post of mine about the work of Rebecca Davis (link profile blog). She was just as enamored with Davis’ art as I was and was going to buy one of her pieces.

Imagine how surprised I was to hear that the day they met to make the transaction there was a fire at her studio. Not one, not two, not three but FOUR! Not only that, the new piece she was working on at the time was titled ‘Where’s There’s Smoke…’ Yes, for real. She had no idea how appropriate that title would become ….

Here’s how Rebecca recounted it.

“Something told me not to light that candle. The landlords at my studio have strict rules about anything that could be a fire hazard but it was just for a photo shoot and then I would blow it out. I set it on my windowsill and I never thought another thing about it.

Six hours later, as I was packing my car to leave,  a workman directing traffic in the street outside of my studio began yelling something at me. I was in a hurry and a little annoyed because I could not understand what he was saying.

When I looked up, to my horror, the curtains in my studio were in flames. I immediately went into autopilot, ran inside, grabbed the fire extinguisher, and quickly put the fire out. Thinking to myself,  thank God for fire extinguishers.  I returned to packing my car to leave. A few seconds later,  the guy in the street yelled, “ it’s still on fire.” Once again, I grabbed the fire extinguisher and quickly put the fire out. This time I stayed put and watched, and sure enough, a third fire ignited.  Before I even finished putting the third fire out, I noticed a fourth fire had ignited. As I went to put this fourth fire out, to my astonishment,  I realized the fire extinguisher was empty. Just as I was about to go into panic mode, I looked up and an angel in the body of a workman was standing there with a fire extinguisher in his hand and put the fire out.

Remember the painting that I was working on before the fire, titled, “Where There’s Smoke…”? Well,  right before the fire I finished the painting and put resin on it. If you know anything about resin, you know that anything that comes into contact with it will stick to it. Amidst all the commotion of the fire, I forgot all about the painting.

When I went back to my studio the next day, everything in my studio was covered in a very thick layer of fire extinguisher dust. Everything that is,  except for the painting. The only evidence of the fire on the painting was in various places, black soot from the curtains. I immediately noticed that the soot added a beautiful ethereal texture to the piece that would’ve been impossible to capture on my own.

The soot was a beautiful reminder that we can find beauty in even the messiest of situations.

“Out of the Ashes….”