Wednesday, November 18, 2015

I'm back... writing about art

I finished this painting today, stopping at a point that I would have not been able to leave alone in the past.

I've been thinking about getting back into the habit of writing about art lately.  I've probably been thinking about it for more than two months, but it took me that long to turn that impulse into action and those thought into words.
When I paint I have a pretty constant flow of thoughts, many that transform themselves into images, colors, textures and patterns on the canvas.  The rest are left dangling in my head, and I often feel like the process is not complete until I clarify it.  It doesn't really need to be verbalized to the world, but why not?  If anyone wants to read it, that's great.  If no one wants to read it, it's basically my own personal art journal on the internet.  

So.  I'm back.

This new painting is my way of processing the recent (and not so recent) events of the world.  The constant conflict, the divisions based on ideology and political affiliation, the wars, the inequality, the lack of understanding, the lack of dialogue, the anger, hate, fear....
The dualistic thinking that has led humans to cannibalize their own selves.
And the compassion, the way some still stay connected, the love that remains, the bridges, the palms held open and the hearts that strive to stay there too.  
I've been wondering if the human family is like a viscous dog, filled with fear, attacking and devouring it's own tail.
I think, but I'm not 100% sure, this painting will be titled "Cannibal"

I like that it's not obvious.  It is vague and a little confusing and ambiguous in content.   
It's how I feel.

I sincerely believe we are all connected.  What to do about it is a mystery to me.  I'm just trying hard to open my heart and keep it open.  At the moment that's hard enough.  Maybe it is enough.  Maybe not.  
The jury seems to be deliberating.

What does this all have to do with painting?  I paint to figure this out, to articulate my innermost feelings and ideas to myself.  I don't think my thoughts are going to be clear to the viewer.  I think it's ok for every viewer to look and come up with their own meaning.   I like to think some vital force in the image, in the colors and the compostion and the feelings that arise from them will communicate something, something close to what I'm experiencing when I'm painting it.  I'm more and more comfortable with that.  Is it possible to misinterpret art?  I am trying to accept this is something I don't have to feel responsible for.  Letting it go is a part of the process.

After painting on canvas today I sat down and continued a few ideas on paper in a simpler and more lyrical way.
Working on illustrations alongside larger more complex and evolved work comes naturally to me.  

All I know for sure is I have to keep painting, and I think writing about it a bit helps me to make a little sense out of it all.  Just enought to keep focused and stay with the ideas that arise out of the work I do on canvas.

And if you read this far... well... welcome back to my art blog :)

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