Archive for May 17th, 2011


I wrote yesterday about how my upcoming show at the Principle Gallery was beginning to take shape in the studio.  I’ve been thinking about this and thought I might add a few points, maybe clarify things a bit.  Or muddy up the thought process even more.  There’s no telling  at this point.

I view the show not as a group of individual paintings but as a cohesive collection with common threads that run through them, emotional connections that create a unity of feeling across the group.  This is a hard thing to explain and goes beyond subject matter or style and technique when I’m trying to take in the group as a whole.  It comes down to a gut sensation, that feeling of rightness that I’ve struggled to describe before.  For instance, there are a few pieces that I could show with this group but , while they are strong and fully alive, their emotional resonance is slightly out of line with the rest of the work.  I don’t even know where to start in defining this emotional resonance that I’m talking about here.  It’s as though each piece is emitting a tone or a note and I’m trying to choose those pieces that harmonize with one another.

Maybe it’s like a composer putting together a symphonic piece, trying to unite all these disparate instrument and sounds into one united voice.  You can pick out the different themes and tones of the individual instruments but it is the power of the whole that draws you in.

Maybe I shouldn’t view the work for my shows in this manner, should not worry  how the work is assembled as a group.  I mean, it may not even be noticeable to anyone but me.  But I do recognize it when I look at the shows as whole entities and that me feel there is something in it , something that makes the work come together to create something more powerful than the individual elements.  And this unity ultimately enhances each piece.

I don’t think I can really explain this, it being a pretty nebulous concept.  But it does occupy my thoughts for these weeks leading up to a show.  Hopefully, this will be evident in the show.

By the way, the triptych at the top is part of this show, part of the symphony.  It is a work on paper that frames out at 16″ by 34″.  There’s great warmth in this painting, a great sense of security for me.  But the title is still evading me at this time so if you have any suggestions, I would gladly listen.

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