There are ups and downs in everything, positives and negatives. Without quaking there would be no revelation. Revealing the light, letting it shine through the cracks, outwardly and so bright as to allow recognition, means cracks are necessary. For me, new is not "something completely different," but something better revealed. I wish my self-discoveries were so novel as to be similar to the discovery of an absolutely unknown species of dinosaur or insect. That is an inhuman want. Impossible is self-discovery that is startlingly novel. Neoteric is possible. Strange, unprecedented, and singularly unique, is not possible. Yesterday's drawings call upon my past. They are research by revisit. They are questions whose prior answers were not rigidly successful. I return. This is a seismic search. Yesterday's drawings are me compressing a springboard for energetic release. Yesterday's drawings are not unique, nor perfect in their success. I am back at it again today!
I have said it before. Picasso said it. Making art is like writing a diary. Every day thoughts flood my mind. These thoughts are original and new. These thoughts are me living. These thoughts are me reacting to the day before today. These thoughts are questions I am asking about all I have done and all I have experienced.
Yesterday's drawings feel more like a diary entry than usual. These drawings are exploring latent ideas springing into my mind in contrast to the work I see before me. I am reacting to the painting I did the day before and to the drawings from the day before. I am questioning. I am answering. I am researching. The weird thing is the enduringness of this activity. Weird because somewhere, in the back of my mind, I think I can figure this out and make one fully realized image on canvas or paper. That is not going to happen. No way is there an ending to this activity.
Yesterday's drawings are tests. They are me philosophizing, stepping back and thinking, asking where should I be in this art-making crowded by choices. Simplicity is nice, comfortable, but not long lasting. I vote No.1 as best for me. Best for me because it satisfies me most. It keeps me engaged in more than a moment. It is a series of moments in visual form.
The wounds due to being human keep happening. They do not stop happening. To be human is to be at the mercy of entropy: Impossible to win. This is the Third Law of Thermodynamics. It conquers everything. Art is my refuge. No matter the cause of worldly uncertainty, I keep making art. Art-making is the consistency within the inconsistency of my living and my social behavior. Without art-making I would be sludge. Yesterday's drawings continue my efforts to see forms more clearly. Perhaps they are too sculptural for painting and drawing. This is a major concern with images on two dimensional surfaces. One must not go too far toward the artifice of the third-dimension or the reality of the two-dimensional surface is uncomfortably disrupted. This is me questioning. My current work is pervaded by research. The specular spot is useful in portraying the third-dimension, as seen in yesterday's drawings. INSIGHT: My art is about disruption. I wish to disrupt the ongoing decay of being human. I fight the dictum, The Third Law, that entropy in me is increasing. My little effort is me disrupting the two-dimensional surface with the artifice of the third-dimension. I am fighting for solidity in a liquid state.
Yesterday produced a volume of work seldom seen in one day of work: four drawings and a new state to the painting "2017 No.2". Art-making busy means verbal scarcity and visual abundance, at least in my case. Such is visual research. In the midst of this current research all is to question. At this moment, I want answering appropriately to be undefined. I do not wish to clarify further because I fear it would characterize my work, which might distract me from the questions I must continue to ask.
As a young Buck I thought I wanted to be like Pablo Picasso. Lo and behold, from years of work and consequential decommissioning of my original, desperate impulses, here I am. Picasso's work is unrelentingly attractive to me. But, I think I am more like Giorgio Morandi, the slow and careful researcher of image, rather than the blustery, exaggerator of visual reality. If you look below this post, you will see reproductions of paintings by Morandi and Picasso. I love them both. They both have influenced my work. You can see similarities in Morandi's light and form in my work; you can see in Picasso's painting similarities to my forms. Stepping back... "Who cares?" I am becoming myself. That is the importance. It is not important that my work references other artists' work. I very much enjoy looking at the works of both Giorgio Morandi and Pablo Picasso. This is the significant message. There is great value in identifying that which attracts me, makes me look with pleasure and glee. It aids me in knowing me.
The painting "2017 No.1" reminds me of me before. By "before" I mean, "I've been there. I've done that." This painting, "2017 No.1" is pleasant enough, but is it right enough? All I can tell you with clarity is this: I am in the midst of an upheaval through research. Things I knew to be true are no longer true. The approach to "2017 No.1" is that which is not right. I am struggling to correct my behavior. This year's drawings exhibit this change. It is my act of painting that must change in order for me to be here, be now, be authentic. My struggles continue. I will not give up. I'll finish this painting. Yes, in the act of the next painting I will force myself to be closer to right in action.
It is November, we are in late autumn, the U.S. elections are next week, and I am doing the same as I have been going for many years... daily work. Are there changes afoot? It will snow soon. I will continue my search, my research. Yesterday's drawings are me looking, me watching, me reacting to myself. I could not paint yesterday. It seems the latest painting, "2016, No.18", needs more contemplation before I act upon it. I think that will happen today. Changes are afoot!
When you opened today's post did you think you were somewhere else, not with me? Yesterday's drawing was covered by marks in a manner quite different for me. I think it was an examination of surface in preparation for my return to the painting "2016 No.3". Today I will find out. You will not know where this came from, nor where it will go, until I figure it out and post about my ideas, which will happen tomorrow. Even then it may just be me talking, and may not be me knowing.
I am encountering an expected major problem for an artist with my propensities. How do I integrate the background with the robust forms I create in the foreground? This is a problem because of my natural desire to create sculptural forms. Why don't I just make sculpture? I tried that. I did not like it. It takes too much time to manipulate large forms, as well as enormous studio space and enormous cost. There is also color. I love color. I also love to control and manipulate light. Playing with light crossing forms is so much more direct in drawing and painting than in sculpture. So, here I am. I must deal with the inherent two-dimensionality of canvas or paper as I produce artificially drawn three-dimensional forms. To make the actual 2D work well with the artifice of 3D is not an easy task. It took Cezanne a lifetime. I am committed to this. It looks like abstract forms may allow me to research more directly with this 2D/3D problem than having to worry about the efficacy and meaning of actual forms, human or otherwise. At least, that is how I feel today.
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