People play games, but generally the world pops over just the same. It is happening now. In the thick of it we are! As is my art. It is becoming its true self. This is happening because of consistent work; work based on deliberation upon deeds done, art made, ideas accomplished, successful ideas, ideas that failed.
Yesterday's work went splendidly. Delusion is always possible when I feel joyous because of success perceived. I do think yesterday's drawing, and this painting, indicate absorbed knowledge, finesse and clarity; this is not delusion. It is here, shown to you.
Yesterday felt right and good; I knocked around my images, as one does when searching a wall for a solid stud. These images, the ones I show today, are solid. They hold their own, They have strength and dignity. They demand perusal. They give satisfaction. That said, the painting,"Clever Liars", is incomplete. It requires sheer work, mindful work, to reach finality. It is almost there; it asks me, "When is enough good enough?" In others words, its essence is true; I cannot get much more truth by adding nuance, so why continue to develop it? Here is where a discussion of perfection is relevant. Simple it is: Intuitively I feel the need to make each one of those bright, cone-like objects, truly lit, truly three-dimensional in feel — their surfaces must feel touchable, like an egg in a Chardin still-life (see below).
The drawing is complex, indomitably readable, pure in its contrast of forms, forms left versus forms right. It this gaslighting? Does it make you question your sanity? My intension is to educate, not to admonish, "Ultimate sanity is comprehension, then acceptance; Contrast is part of our social order!"
Looking back is not an easy find for the present tense. This painting, "Amidst a Falling World" (2020 No.3), has no easy precursor. It is a difficult delight. My paintings of this year, 2020, are coming slow, These paintings are measured in the making, come in great effort, rumble with difficultly, but are assuredly better than I have done before; more true to myself.
I have high standards, in my art and in my relationships. It is my high sense of morality that keeps me true to myself, and true, or not true, to others. This Covid-19 era has forced me to look acutely at me, my here and now; it has awoken me, instigated higher awareness of myself and the people who are in my life, in my relationships. People, and my Art, presently appear to be starkly revealing, in some cases diametrical when compared to my view before the Covid-19 onslaught; it has brought extreme clarity. I am proceeding in a measured way, both with ideas concerning Art and ideas concerning relationships. Amazing it is, that it took a pandemic to force me to slow-mo into higher consciousness. As I age, as I see death and disease around me, I am sharply aware that my time must be taken very seriously; there is a limited quantity. I do not want to waste any of my existence on falderal or useless behavior.
Yesterday's work is dedicated to problem solving. What do I want to represent me? More, how do my momentary needs get translated into visual images? I deeply feel my "needs"; this is about emotion, intuition, walking a path, leaving detritus that represents my true self.
Intensity is strikingly upon me. My dialogue never stops. I feel nervous, anxious. The intensity of my anxiety is increasing because I never find enough time in the studio in order to fully explore and to fully question; there are more demands on my time than making art. There is much to do, not enough time to do it. I am filled with fear of failure. I do not want the road to end before my journey is accomplished. I am on my way home. I need time, a lot of time, to find home, to find my personal authenticity. I have seen my true architecture, it resides interstitially between the bits and pieces of the living I am experiencing. It resides in my mind's eye, obscured by experience and education; I live with distorted ideas that I have inherited from people who have come before me. I recognize the ideas of others are not mine; this fills me with anxiety. This is my work; I am becoming my one true self.
These works are not the endgame. These show insight, knowledge, acceptance, influence, and communication skills. I am on a road; I am recovering from delusion. I once believed I lived alone with artful insight. This is not a lonely man's game. I am communicating with you. The past (Art History), and the present (the real-life viewer, who lives here and now), are my true measuring sticks. I am better for accepting the truth; there is a requirement to proper social intercourse, which must be accepted in order to be seen, to be understood, to be believed.
It is very difficult for me to pare down my visual ideas. I am working hard to become absolutely direct; so completely personal as to be impossible to misunderstand. Yesterday I was more successful in my painting, than in the drawings. In the drawings, you can see my effort to pare to importance, but they are not as convincingly reduced as the painting. Still, the painting has room to pare. Mostly that heart-like object annoys me (in the lower left); it has to go. What the hell is that, anyway? Of course you could say "what the hell are they?" about any of my forms. I am reaching for profoundity in form making; I am looking for universal, yet abstract, substantial forms; forms that are intuitively understood, if not immediately recognized as representational.
If I am to solve this, I am required to give into instinct and intuition. Proper and correct causes confusion. Logic is an enemy; it relies upon experience. Logic is inherently biased. I will continue to use my knowledge of Art History, and the knowledge and skill I have work so hard and long to acquire. I will, however, temper my simple, intellectual knowing, with my deeper intuitive knowing.
The activity on yesterday's drawing and painting did move me forward. They solidly accept the reality of classical composition, while exhibiting my struggle to throw my worries and concerns in the face of the viewer.
It can get very confusing. Knowledge is a strong, but power can distort possibilities. If power be fully followed, the consequences may not fall comfortably; the result may be incorrectly conceived. Failure occurs because power was allowed to precede knowledge; power has the ability to push aside a level-headed approach, thus diminishing the ability to secure a well measured result. Great art is balanced by perspicuity. With this I look at yesterday's work. I am insecure with it. The painting feels unfinished, not forceful enough; the drawing is a risk in value contrast and form contrast. Do they work well? Are they successful in engaging thought and feeling? I must think about this; both these works make me nervous. Or, is my nervousness merely a sign of the times I am living within?
Note on reproduction: Today's reproduction fails to accurately represent yesterday's actual drawing. The more a work of art relies upon subtlety to convey its ideas and emotions, the more the reproduction of it fails to impress.
Precious be the day when headway is accomplished. Onward I go with every mark I make; outward I am becoming. These works are very good; "knock on wood" that this may continue for a good while longer; years and years before I sleep!
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