Yesterday I delivered the last of the paintings to Circa Gallery
for my show there that opens next week. Here are 2 small paintings that will be in the show. I chose to post them here because, although they're the same size and dimensions (12" square)and both have a lot of blue, they're very different from one another. The fact that they are so different illustrates something about how I think about exhibiting, and also about my working process.
(The dictionary says that process
is "a series of actions, changes, or functions bringing about a result," or "progress; passage." Such a handy word!)
I regard the work in this or any of my exhibits as just a point on the continuum of what came before and what will follow, a snapshot of the process. It's not like a book, with a clear beginning, ending and central theme--for me, the overall process of growth and change is too important to be broken into neat chapters. I'm usually pursuing a number of ideas, and working on five or six paintings at the same time. Fortunately, because I'm usually drawn to a certain format or range of colors for an extended period, there is usually something that pulls the work together as a group when an exhibit rolls around.
Individual paintings are pretty unpredictable though. Because each one is developed intuitively, at any point it can take a sharp turn and a new path. That's what happened in the two paintings posted here. Both began in a very similar way, with shades of blue applied to the panel. I think I had some idea that they would be a "pair" (such ideas generally fall by the wayside pretty quickly.) The one on the left evolved into an abstract, opaque image, while the one on the right veered towards a watery image, with shimmering layers of white and turquoise. Neither idea was preconceived; both emerged according to the individual process.
Of course I'm not talking about complete randomness--a lot of consideration goes into my work, and all of it comes out my particular visual vocabulary and aesthetic. But I try to always trust in the process, and not limit the possibilities. The surprising results keep me very entertained.
I'm back from a rather intense week on the road to NY with my husband Don. It was an excellent trip that included seeing family along the way, and slide talks at two boarding schools--West Town in West Chester PA and my own alma mater, Solebury School in New Hope PA. Some of the students listening were bound for art school upon graduation, so I hoped to give them a glimpse of the life of a professional artist. I also showed slides illustrating how my work has developed in the past...uh...many years since I was in their places (OK, I graduated from high school in 1972!)
But the main event of course was the opening of the group exhibit I'm in, Have A Good Eye
, at M!WAA in New York. In the photo you can see the two paintings I exhibited, Desert
left, and Stone Shadows
on the right, plus me in my requisite black outfit. The opening was very well attended with much good conversation, and meeting and greeting among the artists and patrons. This is the first time I have shown work in NY so it all seemed rather glamorous and novel, and very enjoyable.