Questions of Influence.
In yesterday's post I showed a reproduction of a painting by Carroll Dunham. That painting of Dunham's is similar to many of his recent paintings. Dunham's color scheme is repetitive. Dunham's imagery is repetitive, including the use of the backside of a woman with large buttocks (take a look at Dunham's website for more of the same: Carroll Dunham's website). Yesterday a woman with large buttocks showed up in my drawing. This drawing is influenced by Carroll Dunham, but it is obviously quite different than Dunham's work. Most interesting to me is my vastly dissimilar approach to drawing. In everything I do, it is me I am interested. It appears, however, that I am casually interest in Dunham. Comparing Dunham's approach to mine is instructive. I am all about being playful with forms, creating interesting compositions based upon forms in space, and scratching the surfaces of those forms with pencil or paint. Contrasting Dunham's works to mine makes my own approach so apparent to me. In contrast to Dunham, my work is non-repetitive in its use of imagery, form, space, color, and composition. Carroll Dunham does appear to make many more paintings than I. So sticking to one idea that strikes one's fancy may help produce a large volume of work, but is it good work? I will not answer that, but I will say that Dunham appears to have "made it", by which I mean his paintings are bought and possessed by collectors, one after another. That has not happened to me. My work is not about producing a large volume of work. Is this a problem? This question I will not attempt to answer.
A simple day.
Drawings from 8/14/2015, both pencil on paper, 16X20 inches
Yesterday was simple. I made simple drawings. I went to a party where my paintings and drawings were highlighted. In the morning I wrote my blog, at the party I spoke about the ideas I expressed in yesterday's blog post. Simple. Today I am tired, so I will not go to the studio.
ANNOUNCEMENT: It is an annual thing... in late August I take time to reassess where I am, where I am going. I clean the studio. I also think of myself as a business person and revise my business plan. I will begin these two-plus weeks today, returning Wednesday September 2nd.
Art as Business & me.
I am not sure of the exact meaning of yesterday's drawing, posted above, but it could be two of me. The left guy is erect, confident, with large, open hands; he is strong and ready to go. The right guy is leaning back, leaning away, head sideways; he appears fragile with his small, closed hands. The right guy definitely lacks confidence. I am feeling very good about my artistic development. I will never be fully satisfied, but I am relishing the journey. I believe, for the first time, that I have gathered the necessary tools to do whatever needs to be done. I have reached a high degree of mastery. I have confidence I can achieve that which I can conceive. Through my art I want to interact with the world. This blog exists because I want to communicate. However, this blog's limitations are obvious. Therefore, I accept the necessity to engage in the business of art. I need to get my art out there, into venues that may be seen by those who are emotionally engaged in the visual arts. I also wish to make my art accessible to all and everyone. This brings me to today. In the past I have had many exhibitions, shown my work in important galleries, and been juried into competitive shows. During the past four years I have stepped back from that sort of engagement and I have been writing this blog, exhibiting my work here. Late last year I began to feel the need to step back into the brick and mortar world of gallery exhibitions. I put out a few feelers and applied to several juried competitions. Nothing happened. Call it rejection. So, today I begin to think as a businessman who happens to have visual art as his product. Every Friday I am going to devote time to this effort. Today is Friday.
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At MEHRBACH.com you may view many of my paintings and drawings, past and present, and see details about my life and work.