The vessel that took me on my journey was not the Pequod, it was an honors seminar class entitled "Melville and the Arts." my captain was not an insane, obsessed one-legged man they call ahab, but dr. robert wallace (he has two legs). instead of searching the ocean for a giant white whale, we have instead been on a quest for knowledge about the novel and the art that it has inspired.
over the past semester, our class has done a wide variety (very wide!) of activities and trips that for me have opened new doors, and have led me to look at things in a new way. one of the most memorable of those experiences wasa trip that we as a class took to chicago. it had just so happened that elizabeth schultz, the author of one of our required texts, unpainted to the last had put together a touring art show of many works that she has featured in our book. the show just so happened to be at northwestern university at the peak of our semester and our class all piled into a tour bus and headed for the windy city. the trip started off with a melvillian experience for me. let me explain. to cut down on cost we had each been assigned four to a room. i had brought along two close friends with me, but the fourth man was an art major that i had never met. everyone else seemed to know who he was except for me. he wasn't on the bus either; at that time he was in vegas and was going to meet us there. we arrived much earlier than he did, so i went the whole evening without ever meeting him. i was a little intimidated by the whole situation, but it really didn't bother me. we finally did meet our roommate though, and contrary to my fears, he offered us a firm handshake, and not a severed head.
the rest of the trip was a whaling good time. we finally came face to face with the art that we had spent the better part of our semester studying. my favorite artist at the show was robert del tredici. he had done a series of ink prints that i really love. one of my favorite prints is this one entitled yes as everyone knows, meditation and water are wedded forever, shown below: