Title in the video

Title in the video

Travel - Minnesota, Dieterich Spahn Patterns Connecting

This video is about patterns in Dieterich Spahn's stained glass liturgical art and studio paintings. Plus it finds connecting patterns in our lives. Interconnected elements are Dieterich Spahn, Gretchen Walby Fogo, Carol Lind Caroling Geary, Jim Fogo, Mel Geary, Peter Dohmen Studios, Jim Rosenquist, Excelsior United Methodist Church, home, studio, Valparaiso Chapel, memorial web pages, memorial church windows, Minnesota, Florida, grace drops and cosmic juices. Explore deeper synchronicity related to this experience in LookInOut 2013 - Connections.


Dieterich Spahn Patterns Connecting, 3-minute video on YouTube or Vimeo.


Gretchen: What is your feeling behind this particular pattern?

Spahn: The pattern is really two things. In liturgical art, when you paint the white drops, they are drops of grace. Of inspiration. Of the holy spirit. (Can make the nectar of the passion, the blood.) It got me started on another idea. I use them a lot in my stained glass. So I thought for me to get flatness. I also wanted to have an element in there that gives it a feeling of perhaps movement of life, of direction. Of something other than just the forms. So I started using these elements. These patterns. These free patterns. They are not connected. They are only connected by their regimentedness. They are not connected with lines.

Gretchen: Because they appear in all your work.

Yes. They appear in all my work. They are upside down and they go down. You see, sometimes they have this bend in the middle here so it doesn't look like a drop. So it is somehow different. Sometimes they face this way, they are upside down and also face the other way. . . . it changes the pattern. There is a liveliness to the pattern. It is so subtle that you don't see it right away. But there is something about it that makes it do that.

3:18 I don't want to hit anyone over the head with anything. I kinda like subtleties. . . . When you look at life, life is very seldom big events. Life is the continuation of little subtleties that relate to each other. But sometimes they are rather obscurely related to each other. So that is the underlying continuation. All that other stuff has to succumb to that. It is part of it.

In glass, it would be gorgeous. You would have the light come through, the thing would shimmer, the light would change during the day. It would be like TV.

It is not walk-by art. It is meditative art. You sit in front of it. You keep looking at it, and every time you look at it, you see something different. That's the idea.

Gretchen and the flowchart connections of our lives


Connections - Excerpt from "Dieterich Spahn Pattern Connections" video on YouTube or Vimeo video. The timeline runs in slow motion to follow the connections in the elemental life stories.


Here are the events forming the pattern of event elements that are indirectly connected. I have given dates when I know them, but elements are sequential and in Minnesota unless otherwise noted.
  1. 1945 Gretchen Walby and Carol Lind are lifetime friends from grade school on. Separated after high school.
  2. Mel Geary apprentices with Peter Dohmen Studios in stained glass but leaves to attend the University of Minnesota where he becomes lifetime friends with Jim Rosenquist.
  3. 1960 Carol marries Mel Geary and in 1961 divorces him but they remain lifetime friends.
  4. 1960 Gretchen marries Jim Fogo on June 29.
  5. 1961 Dieterich Spahn comes to work for Peter Dohmen Studios.
  6. 1962 In New York, through Mel, Carol connects with Jim Rosenquist.
  7. 1964 Fogos join Excelsior United Methodist Church.
  8. 1968 Caroling connects with patterns of elements that I call "Cosmic Juices". Not sure when Spahn made drops part of his work. I call his "Grace Drops". These elements are often arranged in patterns. To me, the connectivity seems related.
  9. Fogo's friends build house. Later Spahn buys the house.
  10. 1970 Mel Geary and Dieterich Spahn inherit Peter Dohmen Studios and become business partners as Geary Spahn Studio. When Mel leaves the partnership they become lifetime friends and keep in touch.
  11. Spahn makes windows in Excelsior United Methodist Church.
  12. 2006 In Florida, Gretchen Fogo and Caroling Geary reconnect and Caroling connects with Jim.
  13. 2007 In Pennsylvania Mel Geary dies. Caroling creates web pages, the Mel Geary Memorial.
  14. Spahn finds Caroling's Mel Geary Memorial web pages. Also, through email, he connects with Rosenquist.
  15. 2008 Jim Fogo dies.
  16. In Indiana Gretchen sees famous Valparaiso stained glass windows.
  17. Gretchen's church becomes a client of Spahn to create memorial windows for Jim Fogo. Gretchen learns Spahn worked on the Valparaiso glass. Gretchen finds the Spahn-Geary connection. Gretchen and Spahn recognize their mutual Geary and Valparaiso connection.
  18. 2012 Caroling visits Gretchen and connects with the church windows and Spahn. Cosmic Juices meet Grace Drops in a page about Connections.
  19. Gretchen learns that Spahn now owns her old friend's house.

How does my work relate to the pattern elements, Spahn grace drops? I have Cosmic Juices, the Elodrop, and the shower. See Connections.

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