Finishing the paintings for two New Hampshire summer exhibits has taken me away from my present work (AVA Gallery & Long River Studios). "Window" is a good painting, but I felt I was completing an idea formed months ago. I want to work in the present. I have been exhausted this week from the activity surrounding the final touches applied to "Window," and the emotions of delivering it to a juried show so it may be judged. Talking about "being judged," the local newspaper, "The Valley News," reviewed the "Long River Studio" Lyme 250th Anniversary Show. The headlines read, "Art in Lyme: Where Are All the People?" The reviewer, Alex Hanson, noted only one of the works in the exhibit had a human figure and it was my "Lyme's Soldier." This is what Mr. Hanson wrote: "One of Mehrbach's paintings, Lyme's Soldier, features the only human figure in the exhibition, the granite Union soldier on the town green. Mehrbach has given this traditional form an aggrieved demeanor. The painting is effective, if a bit heavy-handed. That's right, the lone human shape in the show is a painting of a statue." Without knowing it, this reviewer points out my personal failure. I had played with the idea of making portrait drawings of two of my favorite people in Lyme, both long time residents of the town and both over 90 years old. I should have followed my instincts and done this; it would have been more fun. Instead I just "did the job." I am disappointed in myself.
Yesterday I found myself futzing around, looking for personal reality. The two drawings came hard (you can see the many erasures around the women's heads). I hope today will be more comfortable.
To read my profile go to MEHRBACH.com.
At MEHRBACH.com you may view many of my paintings and drawings, past and present, and see details about my life and work.