24 June 2014

Space

"Energetic space begets energetic space." Jeanette Winterson, Art Objects

I am in the midst of moving out of my home and studio for some substantial remodeling. Though I'm excited about these long-desired changes, the necessary upheaval takes a toll on me. I've received a good deal of sympathy, and even offers of housing during the worst of the demolition and construction. I'm not too worried about where I sleep, however.  But I'm completely rattled by dismantling the studio. Being separated from my tools and materials, all the possibilities that reside in them and the creative space itself seems unendurable. As Virginia Woolf asserted in A Room of One's Own, having a space dedicated to creative work -whatever that work may be- is essential to sustaining momentum as an artist.
I can't wait until these changes are made, and I can begin to reclaim my space, and once again gather momentum with my ideas, images, tools and the welcoming blanks of white canvases.

Self Portrait at the Easel, 1989.

13 June 2014

Artifacts

I have often referred to this series of paintings as "artifacts of a ritual". Unlike my studio compositions, they are drawn from the conditions of a day and all that is intractable in the Autumn landscape. They are created with my evolving skills and sensibilities, but with more observational intensity and candor. 

I would not typically set out for a day of landscape painting with snow in the forecast, but that was the reality of this October 18th.
Wintry Little Summer (SLLS XIX), 2004. Oil/Paper, 13x20".
I am not drawn to slopes bleached by herbicide spray, but that is how I found the mountain on this holy day in 2002.

Mount Jumbo (SLLS XVII), 2002. Oil/Paper, 12x18".

And four years later I observed the lingering evidence of a 4th of July fire that burned up and over Mount Jumbo from the east side.


Mount Jumbo (SLLS XXI), 2006. Oil/Paper, 16x20".

Returning to the same site, this beloved mountain, on the same day each year has helped me to grasp what endures through the cycle of the seasons, along with all that changes. I have not waited for favorable conditions, or flinched at the evidence of human intervention -or folly- in the life of this wild space. These are immediate and honest reflections born of reflection.










02 June 2014

Ephemera

I revel in the startling beauty of trees in pink and crimson. As I inhale the pervading fragrance of apple blossom and lilac, I can't help but feel a little wistful, knowing how swiftly they will pass. Consolation is not far off as the peas begin to bloom, the beans sprout, and other greens ascend to hold the fruits of Summer.

I can't resist making at least a few such blossom studies each Spring. These observations from some ornamental cherries in the neighborhood were highly experimental in their combination of refinement and rough expression. This reveals how I want my work to grow in spirit and skill.

Pink Caprice, 2014. Mixed media on art board, 8x10".
In Rose, 2014. Mixed media on art board, 7x5"



In Crimson, 2014. Mixed media on art board, 7x5".

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A artist living and working in Missoula, Montana.