Friday, August 28, 2009
set your own limit
A funny thing happened on the way to paint a soft and gentle image of a dancer looking out a window on a summer's day. The dancer is here but what the heck is that outside the 'window'? I have a habit of drawing images and sylvan scenes but before I know it a rage for color comes tumbling in without my having intended such a thing. Then again, we may think we have good intentions but our deeper selves have plans and designs all their own. Art is all about freedom within the limiting context of whatever medium of expression is currently available and of course, reasonably understood. If you can't find the chords on a piano you may as well not try to play that sonata you heard in your dreams for your friends this afternoon.
I tend to take out my anger and frustration in bursts of unlikely color combinations - or at least that's the way I'll see them once they're underway. I get curious about what will happen next . This piece happened because I had a piece of heavy silk that was wide but only a bit more than a foot long and I wondered what I could do if I cut some of it into smaller chunks and started painting. It turned into a reversible pouch of about 6x6" or a lined twelve inch long silk painting. It has ties for wearing around the waist, or over the shoulder, or just to hang on the wall with something precious inside. It was a spontaneous project resulting in something I actually like.
I love making things I imagine seeing and that's what encourages me to get up every day. Intention is an important element in keeping ourselves healthy and emotionally sound. I prefer not talking to doctors unless they're paying me. I don't see a list of medications as a sign of maturity. The best doctor I ever knew was the one who liked hanging out with me in his office smoking cigarettes, drinking thick black coffee and discussing philosophy. I always felt better after seeing him but they don't make them like that anymore. Instead we get the vocabulary that shapes the medical world and the often defeatist ways we define our physical health. No wonder people get old and weak in a culture that worships the fleeting attributes of youth and beauty.
We're physical beings who sometimes need treatment beyond our own abilities but getting older is not a diagnosis for imminent demise. If you have a problem and I've had a few - chicken pox at 42, a stone in my salivary gland (damn thing looked like a tiny dog bone), the avm-aneurysm and more - I've never given in to becoming a 'patient' since I refuse to allow myself to be labeled. After sickness comes cure.
Whether it's bad temper or the need to see the humor in every situation I can hardly wait to get on with the next project. There's another window and another view in the works right now.