|Conversion (tentative title)|
Image size 12" x 16" approx
A kind of patience seems to be developing with doing these shaped base pieces. I have been trying to allow for an unfolding of ideas for starters which is quite different from how I normally work. In the past I have found a photo or scene and simply pared it down and went with a color idea/plan. The paintings didn't take that long, maybe 2-3 days. These shape based pieces seem to be more about gathering ideas and images from lots of different sources. For the above piece I used the imagery of those generators from the powerhouse visit. Originally I wanted to convey the idea of falling water. (That powerhouse was dependent on water being gravity fed into the system to create electricity.) As I worked the piece and used my initial sketch as the basis, I added and subtracted shapes and tried to remain open to what I saw happening on the paper rather than trying to impose a specific shape or idea onto the piece. The literal representation of falling water just wasn't working. As I played with the generator shapes I realized that I could re position their bases to suggest some movement, possibly some turning, and that would be satisfactory to me instead. I am not abandoning the image of falling water but just saving that idea for when I can make it work better. Some of the shapes added towards the end, such as the blue lines, are simple yet impromptu. I am particularly pleased with that sun shape and the use of the negative part of that cutting. There is a lot here that I like.
With that said though, this lining up of shapes and lines is causing me grief. I don't want to do it just as I didn't want to tape anymore to get straight lines. I love hard edged painting but honestly, you need the right brush, the right paint, the right surface and the tape. I don't see any way around it. My starting to use cut paper was my solution to the no taping issue but now I have the issue of getting everything straight which is nearly killing it for me. And my personal sense here is that what I want to say with these pieces has nothing to do with lining up horizontal and vertical lines on a grid like space. I love organizing the space but doing it on a grid isn't working for me. I don't think so anyway.
OK, here are some lovely things to peruse:
Anne Truitt Have you seen her work? Read the bio on her site, the third paragraph down I think. I love what she says about the relationship between shape and color and her thought process.
Stan Brodsky: Take a look at his work, the stuff from the mid 80's.
Read this short piece by Heather McRae-Woolf. She is a Quaker and writes simply about the miracle of silence and being together.
Hope everyone is having a good week. Thanks for reading and commenting.