Wednesday, May 17, 2006
Japan, Spacemen, and Archaeologists...
I have been trying to chug along with the Versus project this week, but KT rocked my world over the weekend. Its one of those things…when you are convinced that you are doing the right thing with a painting, but you have a sneaking suspicion that you are a tiny bit off the mark, then someone comes and deflates your whole mindset by pointing out the very thing you knew was wrong in the first place….Anyway, what happened is that KT took one look at the above sketch, and said that she “wasn’t on board” with the astronaut. After a crushing emotional setback like that (I think I have reached a new height in navel-gazing, BTW) I needed to delve into why….Her reasons were vague, but it boiled down to the realism of the astronaut. To make a long story short, the problem is that I was trying to make very realistic work. I know that I have the technical skill to do so, but for some reason, my work looks forced and flat when I do that. My work really works when I am not trying to impress anyone with my skill…she said to me at one point this weekend, “maybe you aren’t that type of painter”…It’s really true. I just need to get over it and embrace the funky-stupid painter that I really am. So what that means is that the astronaut doesn’t need to be tied down to one type of spaceman. He is free to be as Sci-Fi, as Flash Gordon, as Rocky Horror as he wants to be!
Consequently, I made some great strides in the Spaceman Vs. Octopus painting over the past week. I have made it the subject of the upcoming Studioneight REMASTERS show. I am using the Laoocon (the spelling of that trips me up, sorry) as my “old master” work…
This week has also been a weird one for this blog. On the one hand, its good to hear that people are reading it [but not commenting…] (although I have always secretly hoped that no one was ever going to actually read it …except for ancient future space archaeologists who might find the internet from the early 20th century and create whole intergalactic cults devoted to the weekly musings of the prophet who wrote between the tines….) but on the other hand, it does bring up accountability issues… However, I will keep the self censorship to a minimum. I may be subject to bouts of hyperbole, I am a gas-bag, I may hold grudges, but I only want what is best for everyone: A healthy, thriving, unfettered art scene, with the best art that we all can produce…at the highest possible prices….
In other news, I saw the Hokusai exhibit at the Sackler (or was if Freer?) on the day it was to close. Despite the crowds, it was still a knockout show. The paintings were fantastic. There is something about painting on silk that helps bring out that creepy haze that permeates Edo period art. Although this isn’t the period of Japanese art that I collect, this period really typifies the changes in the Japanese artistic mindset. Its curious to think of the same sort of thing happening at the same time in France…that is, Delacroix’s work being a bridge from rococo (and essentially unchanged since the Renaissance) to the modern world, Hokusai’s work makes the same transition possible in an isolationist nation, halfway across the globe, at the same time!
Lastly, I’m becoming a champ at Vectorworks…I am making some of the sexiest drafting I have ever made….too bad it’s for Joseph….