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Posts Tagged ‘Home+Land’

GC Myers- Lake Tranquil

GC Myers- Lake Tranquil

This Friday, September 4,  is the final day for my Home+Land show that is hanging at the West End Gallery.  If you’ve been waiting to see it, I hope you get a chance to check it out. Many Thank You’s to everyone who made this a successful show!

Also, I have mentioned that I will be leading a two day workshop where I will be revealing many of the techniques I use in my work.  It takes place at the YCAC in Penn Yan, NY on Thursday and Friday, September 17 & 18, which is just over two weeks away.

Speaking with director Kris Pearson, I discovered that while the workshop was initially filled there have been two cancellations so there are still two openings left.  So if you are interested, please contact Kris by email at info@artscenteryatescounty.org or by phone at 315-536-8226.  It should be a fun couple of days, so if you’re up for it, please come along for the ride!

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GC Myers- Living In All Dimensions smInward is not a direction.  Inward is a dimension.

-Sadhguru Jaggi Vasudev

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This quote from the contemporary Indian Yogi Jaggi Vasudev rang very true for me when I first came across it and it seems to fit this painting, Living in All Dimensions, which is another piece from the Home+Land show  hanging at the West End Gallery.

It is a painting that appears to be outward in all aspects.  It is no shrinking violet.  In fact, the violet color of the sky and  the other deep colors seem to want to lift off of the deeply textured surface and reach out of the picture to the viewer.    There is outward distance in the moon appearing on the horizon and the Red Tree itself seems to be radiating outward.

But for me, this is completely inward in nature.  It is about finding a center of calmness and timelessness.  It’s about transcending the here and now and discovering that inward dimension that binds us to all other dimensions.  A spiritual Oneness.

Well, that’s my take anyway, for what it’s worth.  It’s the kind of piece that will no doubt come across differently to many different people, both in a positive and  a negative way.

And that is as it should be.

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GC Myers  Destiny Bound framedThis coming Saturday, August 1, I will be giving a Gallery Talk at the West End Gallery in support of my current show, Home+Land, that is hanging there.  It starts at 1 PM and, as many of you who regularly read this blog will know, ends with a drawing where one person in attendance will take home a painting of mine.

It’s something I’ve done for several years now at my Gallery Talks  and is something that really gives me great pleasure.  I’ve always felt so fortunate to have found my current life as a painter that this allows me to express my gratitude in a tangible way.  As a result, I try to carefully choose the works that I give away, not wanting to just go the far corner of the closet where I hide those early experiments that make me grimace to look at them now.

No, I want to give away paintings where I feel a pang of loss in giving them away, want them to have some sort of meaning for me so that this is not just an empty gesture. So, for this Saturday’s drawing, I have chosen the painting shown above.  It’s called Destiny Bound and is a 16″ by 20″ canvas so it has the size to give it a real presence.  It’s a painting that was only shown publicly once for a very short time before I brought it back to the studio.  It is sort of an anomaly in my body of work in the way it is framed, using a gold-leafed plein air frame rather than my signature frame.  I tried this frame style for a handful of pieces several years ago and decided that I wanted to stay solely with the continuity of my normal frames.  This is the one painting that remains in a gold frame and I chose to keep it as I’ve just become used to seeing it that way.

So, even though it has a unique overall appearance for my work, the painting itself is what I consider a great example of what has been called my Dark Work, work that first appeared in the months after 9/11 but has evolved over the years.  I am really attracted to overall presence of this painting and the deep colors and line work as well. And the expressiveness of the tree on the right.  That tree  has always felt like it pays tribute in some way to Thomas Hart Benton with its curves and lines.  While it reminds me of some his figures or trees, off the top of my head I can’t cite a particular painting of his that might feature such a tree or figure.

But that connection and the way the tree seems animated jumps out at me whenever I look at this piece. I just plain like this painting.  And I am giving it away on Saturday.  So, stop in at the West End Gallery on Saturday for what I hope will be an entertaining talk and maybe you can take  Destiny Bound home with you.  The talk starts at 1 PM and generally lasts about an hour.  Hope to see you there.

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GC Myers- Center Stage smI think I’ve written here in the past about how the aftermath of  a show is for me in the studio.  In the week or so after a show opens there is generally a little letdown, the result of a sudden loss of the energy that accumulates from the adrenaline and anxiety in the build up to the opening.  I usually mope in a way, floundering around for several days trying to refocus and regain my bearings, to find some point in which to direct my energy.

It’s often a frustrating time even while the show still hangs and does well.  I sometimes get a little lost in those moments where the very act of painting becomes absolutely abstract and foreign in nature to me.  The purpose that just a week ago seemed so apparent now has dissolved and I find myself questioning everything– my abilities, the purpose and direction of my work and so on.  Those particular moments weigh heavily on me.

As I said, it’s a frustrating time.  Fortunately, I know from times before that this was coming and will pass.  It’s part of the process, part of who I am, If, as Shakespeare says, all the world’s a stage and we’re all merely players, then this is simply part of the makeup of the character I portray in this play.  It’s maybe the only role for which I am truly suited by nature and ability.

And maybe that’s the thing I need to remember in these frustrating days; that this is the role that I best play, that this is the role that was written specifically for me.

That kind of ties in with the painting at the top, Center Stage, which is part of the Home+Land show at the West End Gallery.  We are all the main characters in our own plays and we need to be be willing to play the part with conviction, to embrace the role that is written for us.  When you are on that stage, let your light shine.

And that brings us, in a sneaky manner, to this week’s Sunday morning music.  I’m going with one of my favorites, Neko Case, and her rousing version of the children’s gospel classic, This Little Light of Mine.  Gets the day started with a kick and blows away those frustrations.  So, enjoy, have a great day and let that light shine.

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GC Myers- Back to the Land smWell, the opening for my Home+Land show at the West End Gallery was Friday evening and went very well– just a perfectly wonderful night with plenty of people and lots of conversation.  It was a pretty large crowd, especially for a summer opening, but it still was one that met my criteria for a good show:  most of the attention was focused on the work on the wall.

I have been to plenty of crowded openings where the work is sometimes an afterthought and all the people there are facing inward in private conversations.  For me, a good show is one that is outward focused, one where the eyes oriented to the wall.  And even though there  was a good number of people, it seemed to me that most were there for the work.

And that really satisfies me in some deep way and for that I would like to thank all of you who took time from your summer schedule to spend a little time to take a look at the work.  I could not be more appreciative.  And thanks to Linda and Jesse once again for hanging the show in a way that seems to bring it all together in the gallery. Again, I could not be more appreciative.

That said, it’s time for a Sunday morning music and this week I felt like something older and mellow and, for me, the voice of the late and great Sam Cooke can often fill that bill.  This is a song he wrote that has been covered by many artists but his version always seems the real thing for me.  It’s from 1962 and has very recognizable backing vocals from Lou Rawls. Here’s Bring It on Home to Me.

PS: The painting at the top is from the show and is 12″ by 24″ canvas piece titled Back to the Land.

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GC Myers- In the Land of Many Colors sm

GC Myers- In the Land of Many Colors

I found I could say things with color and shapes that I couldn’t say any other way – things I had no words for.

Georgia O’Keeffe

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My show, Home+Land, opens tonight  at the West End Gallery with an opening reception that runs from 5-7:30 PM.  The West End was the first place to give me an opportunity to display my work, over twenty years ago, and has served as a home base for my painting in the years since.  I’ve written here in the past how different my life might be without that first opportunity.

As a result, I attach special significance to my shows here.  Maybe that played a part in my choice of Home+Land as the title for this year’s show.

I’m not sure.

But I do know that, no matter how widely traveled my work is beyond this area, it personally means a lot for me to have my paintings strike a chord with and be appreciated by my friends and neighbors locally– people who often know me in other ways than my being an artist.

And I hope that happens with this particular show.  It is a show that I feel explores the idea of home and place in many colors, textures and forms.  It is a show that I feel represents my work fully to this point in time and speaks for me in ways that words never could, much in the way Georgia O’Keeffe said her work did in the quote at the top.

It would be easy to sit here and write umpteen words about the two pieces from the show shown here, In the Land of Many Colors at the top and Lake Tranquil below, but they effortlessly say more than I could ever say with all my struggling words.  As they should.

So, if you’re in the Corning area tonight, stop in at the West End Gallery for a bit.  Have a glass of wine, stroll around the gallery and see the show.  I’ll be there to answer any questions you might have and would love to hear your comments.

GC Myers- Lake Tranquil

GC Myers- Lake Tranquil

 

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GC Myers- Blue Awakening  smThe deeper the blue becomes, the more strongly it calls man towards the infinite, awakening in him a desire for the pure and, finally, for the supernatural… The brighter it becomes, the more it loses its sound, until it turns into silent stillness and becomes white.

–Wassily Kandinsky

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Certain colors always raise a strong visceral response from me.  I think my use of reds and yellows is evidence of this as is my affinity for the color blue, which I’ve discussed here.  Maybe Kandinsky hits the mark with his words: it calls man towards the infinite, awakening in him a desire for the pure and, finally, for the supernatural.  

I know for myself those are feelings that often are driven forward when I work with the color blue.  There is often a contemplative feeling, one that wonders at the unknown, that infinite, that we seek, that comes with the color.  I see it in the painting at the top.

Called Blue Awakening, this 18″ by 24″ painting on panel has a simplified and almost naive appearance at first glance.  But the blue of the sky set against the pale whiteness of the moon changes the piece from a folksy vignette to one of meditative wonderment.  The Red Tree here takes on a glow that speaks of a new understanding or acceptance of its place and purpose in the universe.  It represents a true awakening of the spirit for me.

The interesting thing for me is that there is not a tremendous amount of blue in the painting.  There are a few tones throughout the lower landscaped  half of the painting and much of the sky are tones that move away from blue.  But the blue that is there commands the space, creating the overall feeling of the piece.  Such is the power of blue.

This painting is, of course, part of my solo show, Home+Land, which is now hanging at the West End Gallery and opens with a reception tomorrow evening from 5-7:30.  The show runs from July 17 until September 4, 2015 and there is a Gallery Talk  on Saturday, August 1.  More info on that in the next couple of weeks.

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