Wednesday, June 23, 2010
Wednesday June 23, 2010
Yesterday was productive and I got a lot done at my desk, with time left over for painting. The painting goes well. There is a dialog going on. I am aware I need paint, I need yellow!
"In the narrowest meaning of the concept, it is touch, after all, that I am after in my work, the touch of my hand I hope to find transmitted into something that touches the spirit." --Ann Truitt, Day Book
This has always been one of my favorite quotes. And I used it as the beginning of my statement about my own work for years. Our own touch is what we are after. Saying it (painting it) in our own way. Hiding nothing, being who we are. It is something we really have no control over, and something we seek. It is what is beautiful in our work. I remember taking a workshop, years ago, from Miles Batts, and he said to us one day, "You accept the work of others so easily, but you are so critical of your own work. And what you do not like, it the very thing that makes your work unique." And I think he was right. How do we learn to be accepting of our own work? Perhaps like everything else, it is practice. See that it is beautiful, tell ourselves it is. It is said our cells respond to our every thought. And can you imagine, how someone might feel, if their inner voice was saying unkind things to them, on a daily basis? I think we can make our practice a positive thing, take a deep breath and love what you are doing, be amazed and say so. Give yourself encouragement, be your own best critic. Know that nothing happens, that you don't create it. And if for some reason it isn't pleasing, fix it. And know that the challenge of perfection is beyond our ability. The best we can do is to be authentic in our work.
Something that goes with the touch, and being authentic in the work, is that, it is the idea behind the work, that dictates the image the artist creates. We do not experience the world, memory or thought, as a whole, but rather in bits or fragments, which are part revealed and part concealed. I think art should be required to be new, fresh, with a sense of the new, not like something we have seen before. Even if the subject is something that has been done many times before, as the artist we have a unique way of looking at things, and that is what we should share. It should give the viewer a different way of viewing the world, as never seen before, satisfying the curiosity that each viewer brings to the work.