Archive for May 13th, 2013

GC Myers 2013 AscendantThis is a 24″ by 24″ canvas  that I finished yesterday.  I am still going back and forth on the  title between Ascendant and Ascent of Man.  Obviously, you could tell without seeing it that it has something to do with a hill, mountain or mound, which comes as no surprise for those of you who know my work.  Using a form of the word ascend denotes a climb of some sort,  either in actuality or metaphorically.  Both initially come  to  mind for me when I look at this piece.

Maybe it’s the way the hill rises from amid the verdant forest and river that brings the title Ascent of Man to mind.  While not necessarily in direct reference to  Charles Darwin‘s work, I definitely see a symbol  of an evolutionary nature in the way the path moves upward through a series of switchbacks, several houses perched on its edge as it rises denoting man  as he evolves  from the earth and water.  The golden sky breaking over the edge of the treeline adds a richness, a sense of fertility, that adds flavor to this whole stew.

The  Red Tree at the peak of the hill symbolizes the present, the now that is the culmination of all that has come before.  Evolution, ancestry, history– whatever you choose to call it– has brought each of us to our own personal peaks.  We are all the sum of all that has led each of us to the present moment.

I really enjoyed painting this piece.  That’s not to say that I don’t find enjoyment of some sort in every painting.  Just the sheer thrill of seeing something form before my eyes and under my hand is always enjoyable.  No, it’s a different type of enjoyment that I’m talking about here.  It felt complete even before it was completely laid out in the initial stage of composition as I worked on the underpainting.  It felt right and balanced from the start which allowed an excitement to grow, an anticipation of how the painting would form and change with each subsequent layer of paint.

It’s that excitement that I have talked about before when I describe what motivates me in the studio.   I have often said when asked about this that the most important thing for me is finding that thing that excites me in the work, that thing that makes me feel the piece is beyond me.  That is usually the sign for me that the work is going to excite others and that’s what I felt here.

But, as always, we will have to see about that…


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