Saturday, January 12, 2013

Life Travels From Sharp Focus To Abstraction

...and back again.

I have been in a constant state of flux.  At first the holidays preempted my blogging activity, then it was my monkey mind.  I would start a blog post only to find that before I had finished it,  something in my painting had changed and my mind would start analyzing and thinking all over again. This happens all the time, but usually I at least finish the post before I realize things had changed.  It has been hard to write about it.  I've been trying, and here I am, trying again.   Hope it doesn't end up reading like a bad Dadaist poem.  

First of all, I am feeling a little bereaved.   (Cue in the violins.) A lot of the studios at the communal space where I paint, have for the most part, completely turned over.  Most of my cohorts have moved to Oakland, Marin and/or left to work at home.  

However, the solitude and quiet might be why I was venturing deeper and faster into a new phase.  For the past year, I have been moving like a glacier toward abstraction.  My paintings were/are in a state of flux, a little bit abstract, a little bit rock and roll, oops I mean figurative.

I  was swimming fast in a group of "candy" paintings.  The theme, of course,  influenced by the holidays.  
"Licorice" I added more "licorice"

 I was focusing on pure art elements and problems, not the subject matter.  However , mostly, I was and continue to struggle with what all artists strive for, complete spontaneity and control. 

So anyway, this painting sojourn reminded me of the work of two of my favorite painters, Giorgio Morandi and Edouard Vuillard.  Both were figurative painters that stayed home and painted what was there, over and over and over.   I could be projecting or maybe it is already a known fact,  but though they were not considered abstract painters,  to me, they painted rather abstractly.  The subject matter was sorta incidental.  Maybe I am projecting, because all I see is searingly seductive paint.
"Natura Morta" Giorgio Morandi

"Madame Vuillard" Edouard Vuillard
I love them both so much, so of course, monkey mind took over and viola!  I had to do another family allegorical figurative painting.  

No mistake, there is no comparison to Morandi or Vuillard, but it is my little world, which is what they were painting too.  

It started out spooky in the beginning.

I like how bored Elmo looks.  

Art/poetry are most expressive and operate the most like the brain operates.  

I read something like this somewhere.  I modified it a bit.  I think what they are really talking about is the monkey mind.