Tuesday, May 01, 2007

"Who ordered that?" is what my grandfather, a prominent physiscist, said when quarks were first discovered. And it is a bit the way I feel about this painting. It looks like a radical departure from what I have been doing for the last 25 years but it feels like a completely natural development.

Here is how it happened: I am alone in the studio, really alone, for two days a week now because Tom is teaching at the Art Students League substituting for our former instructor Frank Mason. On Mondays and Thursdays he makes an "extreme commute" driving 5 hours down to the city, teaching for the afternoon, and driving back again. This leaves me alone for a very long time and I miss him painfully. On the other hand I have the studio, the house and all the space around completely to myself twice a week. The privacy and solitude have given me a freedom to tap some very deep roots. Yesterday was one of Tom's teaching days. I had planned to finish the big still life I've been working on but instead grabbed another canvas and just painted. I had been thinking about how to draw out the poetic layers of the big still life in a more abstract way but in the event what I put down had nothing to do with all the thoughts and sketches I had toyed with. I painted like I did when I was a child: completely spontaneously, charting the changing shapes of my thoughts and feelings as they came.

This isn't finished, but today I really must work on that big still life.

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