The direction of my research and development is obvious. I am further examining drawing and painting as planar-insistent. This can also be said like this: I am exploring the actuality of the two-dimensional reality of a work on paper or canvas versus the artifice of three-dimensions that may be explored through the act of drawing.
In my last post I showed works by Claude Monet and Paul Cezanne. I showed three of Monet's works, exhibiting his move toward facade-like images late in his career. I remarked that Cezanne, early-on in his career, perceived the canvas as a two-dimensional object. I did this by reproducing a painting created by Cezanne in 1877. Today I show one of Cezanne's last works, made in the year of his death, 1906. Wow! It scintillates with surface marks, thus leaving no doubt one is viewing a representation of a 3D-landscape on a 2D-canvas.
A day in the studio is not number 1, or number 2, or number 3. It is a gathering of information. It is research. Amazingly endless, it teaches while it exalts! Selfish, some would say, because it is paying homage to myself. Seeking myself is as mysterious as seeking a higher order in the universe. It is there and it is to be discovered and revealed. Such is my work.
Fascinating, isn't it?
Yesterday I walked into the studio and immediately noticed the values in the painting, "Wowie", were bland, not emotionally dynamic. I was on notice: Much more enthusiasm had to occur, in terms of values, in order to make this painting sing appropriately.
I feel good about yesterday. The drawing also indicates a higher level of internalization of values in my work. A mental jump has occurred. Mindfulness took over to a higher degree. All good stuff!
Drawings from 10/24/2015, all 20X16 inches, pencil on paper
I am writing about two upgrades. The first is in my art. The pictorial content of my art has recently expanded in variety ― there is a more brazenly accepted use of imagery. The second is an upgrade in my commercial website (you are currently reading my educational, not-for-profit, web blog, i.e. a .org site). Yesterday MEHRBACH.com added e-commerce! Items available are limited, but will soon expand to offer everything my art has produced, if available for sale. This will include original paintings, original drawings, and high-quality Giclée Prints of every image on the website (plus reproductions of my work you may have seen in galleries, museums, or private collections ― I own copyrights to all of it).
Today's drawings are exceptional. Their images are both representational and abstract, while staying true to my love of three-dimensions being depicted on a two-dimensional surface. These drawings accept my interests. They do not fight my interests. They are introspective, mindful, and revelatory.
Drawings from 7/15/2015, all pencil on paper, 16X20 inches
Yesterday's drawings were more prolific than usual. They are shown in "Gallery Format", so please click on an image to increase its size for easier viewing. After working hard to make sure I delivered a couple of good pieces of art to the AVA Gallery Juried Summer Exhibition, I, at first, felt lethargic, then I felt introspective. The introspective is what you see in yesterday's drawings.
It can be a problem to be too serious in an existence that has its mystery of reason. Giving up being "serious" equates to making sense of "Why am I here?". This is important if clarity in personal vision is important. Since I believe clarity of personal vision is important, I will follow this formula: questions succeeded by possible answers. I am able to extract a sense that it is reasonable to exist because I am examining my questions by manufacturing possible answers.
Drawings from 06/24/2015, both are pencil on paper, 16X20 inches
Sometimes I wish my ideas would stay the same for extended periods of time. Is there happiness in stasis? All I know, as an outside observer of myself, is transition is active and alive. Everything I know, and everything I think I know, is open to question and change. Is this bravery, necessity, or foolishness? Perhaps a bit of each. Only time and work will distinguish actuality from the lies I tell myself.
Drawings from 06/21/2015, both are pencil on paper, 16X20 inches
I am a man raised upon my intellect, and upon my physical ability to go fast and endure. Yet I am here. I am discovering, through fits and starts and stops and failures and successes, authenticity is revealed not simply by intellect, nor by the ability to call up physical prowess. I will reveal that which causes me wonderment and joy through mindfulness. This I know, because through profound failures, and because of profound successes, this truth has identified itself to me. Also, I hear this truth so often. This information is surfacing in many places. Today I was listening to a podcast with the man who has taught NBA basketball players to access mindfulness. That which he spoke is that which I am discovering. To hear this Podcast go to George Mumford, meditation master to the NBA’s stars – Kobe, Shaquille, Jordan – brings us his zen.
This drawing took me nearly four hours to complete. It is filled with normalcy and abnormality. Nobody has a nose like the man's, but the breast of the woman looks familiar. And so it goes — I am testing the waters of abstraction versus traditional figuration. For me, this is becoming a forever problem. Besides my addressing this issue of abstract forms versus more naturally derivative forms, I would like to point out the complexity of this drawing's space. The drawing, after all, is on a two dimensional piece of paper. Wandering through its space is a deceit, driven by form, perspective, light and shadow, and line. In this drawing, and in the drawing reproduced in my previous blog post, I have used lines to create surface values which simultaneously drive and animate space. The easiest place to see this occur is on the top of the box on which the woman sits.
It is important to me that you look carefully at one minor element: the woman's left hand. I drew that over and over, till it felt right, at least five times.
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