Friday, July 12, 2019

Summer Work

                                               In the Canyon oil on canvas 30x30 [76x76 cm]

 This came together in a 12 hour day, it`s been a long time since I`ve done that. I didn`t intend to and as the day progressed, I started letting go of my other plans. This is an imaginary composition of the Oneanta Gorge in the larger Columbia River Gorge, and I had done a study years ago. Can something be a study when there was only memory to guide it? It felt great to paint in the 'zone' again but when I took it outdoors to photograph, the greens screamed at me. So then I spent several days adjusting them and in the end there is peace.

 It can`t possibly last but Oregon is having a mild summer. Like they used to be and I am beyond grateful. In this new age of global warming, the sweetness of a day feels to me extravagant. I want to honor it. To that end, I`ve been painting outside some. The results aren`t too successful yet but these two cheered me on;

                                 From Luscher Farm watercolor on Yupo 14x11 [35.5x28 cm]

                                     Untitled Forest watercolor on Yupo 12x9 [30.5x23 cm]

 Lots of unfinished oil paintings about but they are slowly coalescing. Very slowly. I`m close.

                                            watermedia on Terraskin 12x12 [30.5x30.5 cm]

 As I plot my strategy for re-engaging with the oil paintings, I paint watercolors. Even a decent abstract one!

 Everybody has seen the photos, most are appalled, but unless the courts order more humane treatment, these concentration camps at the border will persist. This is what the president wants and his party is mostly silent. Deterrence to immigration through cruelty. I am so ashamed of my country right now.

 Illegal immigration is a persistent problem but these Central Americans are fleeing lawless countries menaced by drug criminals. They struggle to come here for the mere chance their children will be safe.
In my opinion, we broke those countries and we own them now. Where to start? We overthrew democratic governments to make banana agriculture profitable for American business interests. That`s where 'Banana Republics' come from. We supported dictators who enabled businesses to exploit those countries for any resource that was marketable. Our disastrous war on drugs caused these societies to degrade into vicious feudal territories ruled by drug gangs. We used those countries in a petty proxy war with Russia, ignoring the needs of the citizens but keeping their governments placated with foreign aid. So now a lot of those people want the hell out of there just to survive. It will never happen, but I think we need a separate immigration policy with those Central American countries. And major investment in their local enterprises. Throw in sensible drug laws since this is a fantasy.

 And since this is a serious tone, here is an article by Bill McKibben on our new climate.

For now, the fate of our country resides in the Republican Party. Will any patriots besides Justin Amash emerge? Sure looks doubtful as that institution slides into fascist policies without a hiccup. The voter suppression alone is an outrage.
 We all can see it. That damn red hat is a swastika. American style.

 OK then.

 Look at these beautiful paintings by Jordan Ellingston.
A year ago he wrote me and invited me to come paint with him in Kauai. I could stay in the room he rented, he would sleep in a tent. Now that touched me, I`m a virtual stranger. He saw something in my work that had a commonality with his vision. I agree. There is an obsessive focus on the sweeping crystalline space of the North Shore that sure got to me when there in 2013.
Have you ever seen any paintings of Hawaii this soulful?

More research on the incredible power of drawing! This article caused me to examine my own resistance. As I`ve mentioned many times, I think drawing is a pain in the ass. But why? Well for me it might be because I try to make it utilitarian. I see it as preparations for painting. So when I can`t indicate mass without a bunch of tedious cross hatching I get frustrated. Maybe if I just let lines be lines. I`m not sure if I can. For many years I only worked from drawings so it is baked in. That practice made me draw a lot and I truly think it`s the foundation of what I`m doing. I advocate for it all the time yet feel so little joy.

work for sale in my studio [updated]

prints from Fine Art America

1 comment:

E.M. Corsa said...

Untitled Forest is just what I needed to see; making me feel cool in this awful heat and humidity. I know this will sound weird, but I'd love to run naked through that forest.

The scariest thing about your post is this: the fate of the country resides in the Republican party. That just makes me shudder.