Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Slashing and Burning and Hearing the Crying Within

Painting in Progress / acryic & mixed media / 54" x 72"

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Yesterday I avoided returning to the studio for a million reasons, I didn't WANT to paint, I didn't want to face the painting. I knew what was coming was going to be uncomfortable and visceral and I chose to avoid it for as long as possible. In the end I had to return another painting to the studio and caught a quick glimpse of what was on the easel, I barely took my coat off before picking up the brushes and slashing and pounding the painting. I had so much anger and pain welling up inside...people hurting other people, thoughtless insults, careless abuse of the earth, humanity against humanity, why? I try and stay focused, be proactive and engaged, live with the unresolved but there are times when the indifference and mean spiritedness of humanity just crushes my spirit. I feel inadequate and frustrated so all there is left to do is paint! And paint i did! With a ferocity and intensity that frightened even myself as I smashed the board with paint (fortunately it is panel board and not canvas). Today, I returned with less reluctance to the studio and the energy, although subdued to begin with, started to roar again as I started to paint. On returning home today an excerpt from artist, Judith Reeve's excellent blog, 'Attentive Equations' caught my eye, "Recognizing the Duende in One's Own Work":
"One needs to put oneself on a threshold of risk where the immediate engagement with the image unfolds in unknown and unexpected ways. It is difficult to put oneself on this level because there is a prevailing uneasiness, a feeling of inadequacy. One feels out of one’s element and all appears at risk, that this image will take more ability and inventiveness than one is capable of. Lorca states,”duende loves the edge, the wound, and draws close to places where forms fuse in a yearning beyond visible expression.” But only in this position can one truly wrestle with one’s own “daimon” and be open to a revelatory correspondence that is not premeditated and therefore reveals itself in the “living” moment."
This is a frightening place to paint from but also intensely physical and as such, serves as a release for some powerful emotions that are surging through at the moment, a storm of energy seeking an outlet. The journey continues.

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