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Posts Tagged ‘Bill Frisell’

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I pursue no objectives, no systems, no tendency; I have no program, no style, no direction. I have no time for specialized concerns, working themes, or variations that lead to mastery. I steer clear of definitions. I don’t know what I want. I am inconsistent, non-committal, passive; I like the indefinite, the boundless; I like continual uncertainty.

-Gerhard Richter

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Gerhard Richter, the contemporary German artist born in 1932, is one of those artists whose thoughts about his work have made me appreciate to his work much more fully. He has a way of putting things in terms that are accessible, not just balloons filled with pompous artspeak that says very little.  More than that, much of what he says aligns with how I see art and the purpose of art, even though our work manifests itself in very different ways. I often come something he has said or written that very much echoes my own thoughts, often in a a very similar way. For example, he speaks about the rightness of art, something I to which I also often refer.

His work has moved around through the years through his iconic abstractions to photography and photorealism painting. I tend to gravitate and think of his work in terms of his abstract work, the Abstraktes Bild series from the 1980’s and the 2010’s. I thought I’d share a few of those pieces along with some his thoughts.

At the very bottom is a piece of music from guitarist Bill Frisell. It is from a project that combined Richter’s work, specifically a large book of his art, along with an album from Frisell titled Richter 858. Each track on the album correlates to a piece of Richter’s art. The piece of music below corresponds to the painting directly above it, Abstrakte Bild 858-3. Interesting concept.

 

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I believe that art has a kind of rightness, as in music, when we hear whether or not a note is false.

-Gerhard Richter

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My paintings are wiser than I am.

-Gerhard Richter

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I would like to try to understand what is. We know very little, and I am trying to do it by creating analogies. Almost every work of art is an analogy.

-Gerhard Richter

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I believe that the quintessential task of every painter in any time has been to concentrate on the essential.

-Gerhard Richter

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The desire to please is maligned, unfairly. There are many sides to it. First of all, pictures have to arouse interest before people will even look at them, and then they have to show something that holds that interest – and naturally they have to be presentable, just as a song has to be sung well, otherwise people run away. One mustn’t underrate this quality, and I have always been delighted when my pieces have also appealed to the museum guards, the laymen.

-Gerhard Richter

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Gerhard Richter- Abstraktes Bild 858-3

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gc-myers-gallery-talk-2016-smMany, many thanks to everyone who came out to the Gallery Talk at the Principle Gallery on Saturday.  While I wasn’t as sharp as I would have liked, everything (including the giveaways at the talk’s end!) went off really well and it was great to speak with so many folks that I only get to see once in a great while.

I don’t know if I can really ever fully explain how important these talks have been for me.  It’s not only for the wonderful feedback I receive about the work which helps me see the paintings in the way others do but in the way it allows me to express my gratitude for the life that their appreciation of my work has given me.  These talks allow me to see how fortunate I was to have fallen into this life.

So,  a deep thank you to everyone there, including my good friends at the Principle Gallery– Michele, Clint, Pam, Haley and Pierre— who allow me to feel at home in their space with their warm friendship.  You have all given me more than you will ever know, more than I can ever repay in gifts or words.

Since I was out of the studio yesterday and missed my Sunday morning music, I thought I’d fill that void today with a selection that gallery director Clint reminded me of this past week in a posting on Facebook where he played this song and invited his friend to identify it.  It’s a song from guitarist Bill Frisell , called Ghost Town/ Poem For Eva. I couldn’t identify the song at first without a clue from Clint even though I knew that I knew the song.  I have used music from this particular Bill Frisell album in an earlier video of my Outlaw series.

So, give a listen and have a good week…

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A Hard Past

A Hard PastThis is a painting from a couple of years ago, titled  A Hard Past, part of the Outlaws series.  I have been hesitant to write about this piece even though it remains a personal favorite.  I use it as the wallpaper on my office computer and am always transfixed by this face.

It actually reminds me very much of my mother.  I know that may not seem a very flattering thing to say but there is something in the hardened distant gaze that reminds me of Mom, sitting silently at the kitchen table with a cup of tea and her ever present Camel.  She would just sit there in silence for long periods of time and I often wonder what thoughts and memories ran through her mind. 

The title came from this memory of her.  She had a pretty hard life- her mother died when she was three,  no school beyond ninth grade, years of toiling in a factory and a long, turbulent and angry marriage to my father.  I could go into detail but I don’t think she would like it, if she were still around.  She liked privacy and preferred to be away from other people, a trait that I carry as well.

I could go on but I just wanted to show this piece again.  I do think Mom would be okay with that…

Speaking of the Outlaws series, here’s a short video I put together with the paintings from that series along with some from many years earlier.  The music is from Bill Frisell

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