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   Welcome to my blog! I'll be posting thoughts about art, photos, happenings, and other things that strike me--and hopefully my readers--as interesting. And please visit my website by clicking the link to the right--thanks!

   Also please check out my second blog, The Painting Archives to see older (pre-2004) paintings for sale.


Wednesday, June 28, 2006
  dog paintings


My new gallery, Wilde Meyer in Scottsdale, is putting together a group show called Dog Days Of Summer, and I was asked to contribute. My first thought was, oh they can't mean me! But I do have a very quirky and adorable dog, Louie, and after some consideration I decided to give it a try. Though I sensed that Louie would provide inspiration, I was not at all sure of how to proceed. It's been a long time since I have ventured into any sort of realism, but some recognizable doggieness seemed to be called for. In the end I drew various views of Louie on one of my typical textured surfaces. And had a good time with it.
 
Wednesday, June 21, 2006
  open studio day


My Open Studio on Saturday was a lot of fun--had a fairly steady stream of visitors, good conversations and several paintings found new homes. Plenty of excellent food and a little party afterward rounded out the day. I wore my Art Muscle T-shirt. Painting is no job for wimps!

The studio photo shows the corner where I had some older work displayed. These are mostly from the mid-90s, when my work was somewhat similar to my current work--very abstract and monochromatic. There are also some from my more landscape-oriented phase of the late 90s visible on the right side of the photo. You can click on the photo to see a larger version.
 
Thursday, June 15, 2006
  abstraction exhibit
  Here is the scene at the opening last week of Visiting Abstraction, a show that I curated for the LE Phillips Public Library in Eau Claire WI. There were 15 artists included, a nice reception, and some local publicity including a radio interview that I did yesterday for Wisconsin Public Radio. Posted by Picasa
 
Friday, June 02, 2006
  what abstraction means to me
I just finished the little assignment that I gave myself and the other 14 artists in the abstraction show that I'm curating...to write a short personal statement about abstraction. I'm looking forward to seeing these--the few that have been shared with me were quite deep and introspective. They weren't just recycled previous artist statements, either, which impressed me. As for my own statement, I'm copying it below. It took me much longer than I thought it would to write--it's just really hard to explain much about the thought process behind a painting.

In a sketchbook of mine from the early 80s, there is a note I made to myself as I headed off to graduate school. The note said, “I want to learn how to make good abstract paintings, and I have absolutely no idea how.” Over twenty years later, I’m still working on this challenge. I’ve definitely made progress, but I’m not sure I’ll ever reach the deepest levels of expression that I sense are possible with this approach.

The pull of abstraction for me is its complex mix of the subconscious and the visible. Ideas for my work, while compelling, are often as hard to pin down and express as a dream. Their sources are varied and interwoven--the natural world, memories, sensations, associations, impressions, spiritual ideas, geometric forms and personal symbols. They find expression in layers of texture, unexpected juxtapositions, suggestions of landscape, and nuances of color. Each painting is an open-ended exploration, undertaken with a blend of spontaneity and careful analysis. It is my hope that in the end, my work has a degree of clarity and integrity that invites contemplation.
 

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       Rebecca Crowell