Sunday, May 9, 2010

Why of the Storm.

Worked all day on this painting pulling it into line, piece by piece, getting lost and then found again. Part of the problem was that I had begun to look at it as precious parts. I was relying too much on photos and concepts. I lost the whole. To make it work I had to release the spirit from the photos. The painting needed its own sky, set within its own landscape.
But it was tricky integrating so many fine linear elements on top of the larger, darker, stormy background. I had to let it all go and destroy what I had. Literally I took a pencil and drew on top of the paint and then with a palette knife scraped back through the layers to the canvas. In sections, turpentine and a rag wiped through to clean canvas—getting rid of some brush work and color I liked. But it had to happen in order to make the painting whole.

Sometimes that is what happens in life as well. Sometimes things can't be fixed.
Sometimes we imprison ourselves. Sometimes we do it for love.
The cage seems surer but do we see the storm?
Is that why it's called the eye of the storm precisely because we can not see?
And perhaps better this storm, this cage, then the road ahead, the uncertainty.
I think we are in a time of cultural, fiscal, and environmental uncertainty. Politically we are tying our hands and refuse to move on either side. Better the storm we're in now then the one we seem to be creating ahead.

Will the pine stand the storm? Will the last elm fall? Does the caged bird sing or is it its last song?

"Why these mountains? Why this sky? This long road? This empty room?
Why these mountains? Why this sky? This long road. This empty room. "

"And everyone used to hang around him."

"And I know why."

"They said: There but for the grace of the angels go I."
—Laurie Andersen

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