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Posts Tagged ‘New Work’

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“Masks beneath masks until suddenly the bare bloodless skull.” 
 Salman RushdieThe Satanic Verses

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This was a small piece that was began yesterday. I had finished a new painting that very much pleased me but left me feeling that it was not a jumping off point to immediately begin another piece in that same vein. In short, it left me feeling a bit blocked.

So, this piece, a 12″ square canvas, was started as a palate cleanser, something where I could just makes marks and shapes and color to fill some space, hoping that it somehow sparked something. This was basically how the Archaeology series began back in 2008. At the time, I was stumped and felt that I was at the end of my creative surge. I began working from a method taught by my 5th grade art teacher where we would simply take large blank sheets of paper and, using pen and ink, fill them in anyway we could. It’s something that I often turn to when I am feeling uninspired and it often bears interesting results.

Here, it started with a face, quickly slashed in with loose strokes, just trying to make a form with as little fuss or detail as possible. Then came another and another and so on. Each inspired the next. They went down in my normal red oxide at first then I went back at each face with quick, rough strokes of other colors, letting the tones and shapes play off one another. It was meant to be coarse in its execution, done fast and without much conscious thought, giving it a bit more expressionistic feel.

What they are, I don’t know. I wasn’t trying to represent anyone I knew or had seen. Just the general faces that have often popped out in my drawing over the years. But many of them have been with me for many years now. Some of them appeared when I was a small child and would try to find them in wallpaper patterns or in the edges of curtains. Everything could be made into a face, so it seemed.

And some I see as being from images culled from medieval texts, even down to the way the lips are modeled. Not done purposely, but they appear that way to me.

But most I recognize here  have been with me since my childhood, some that are friendly and some that deeply bother me, leaving me with an uneasy feeling as though I recognize them from past unpleasant personal experience.

Maybe from this life or some other earlier incarnation, if there are such things. Maybe it’s just a matter of facial and image recognition present in us all that pulls from sort of collective consciousness, that makes us respond to certain shapes and forms. Like I said, I don’t know.

Or maybe it’s just a psychological biopsy of the facets of a personality. Again, I don’t know.

But as a palate cleanser, it has served its purpose. It has amped me up a bit and I could see this small piece growing into larger painting, say 4 or 5 foot square. I could see that having a great impact on the wall, even if it’s only the wall here in the studio. But I don’t know if it will go anywhere beyond this.

Don’t even know if I will completely finish this particular or if I should even try to put eyes in the dark holes where they should be in these faces. I like the feeling that the dark pits give the piece. It gives the faces the appearance of being masks.

And maybe that is what our faces really are- masks.

As always, I don’t know if that’s true. But I do now that if this piece transforms into a larger series I will call it the Masks.

We shall see.

 

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GC Myers-Unpuzzled 2015January is always a month of feeling out in the studio, trying to find a rhythm, a strand that I can grab onto and follow into the rest of the year.   Getting  a group of small pieces ready for the Little Gems show at the West End Gallery (which opened last night) is part of this feeling out process, sometimes acting as a preview as to where the work may ultimately lead me.

This year found that group with clear and glowing transparent color that was very gem-like.  The pieces felt like pieces of jewelry as much as paintings to me which is something I might be able to carry forward.

But now it is February and I am beginning to just let things flow as they come out, emotionally based and free of too much forethought.  Just let it happen and not try to direct it too much.  The first piece after the Little Gems  and in this February frame of mind was the piece shown here at the top, an 18″ by 18″ canvas that is called  Unpuzzled.  This is as much a piece for myself  alone as anything I might do, meant to only satisfy my own need to see it.

I wanted to see a harmony of patterns, rhythms and color that was as much non-objective as objective, which is how I could describe just about any of those pieces which most deeply satisfy me personally.  As this piece does.  It’s one of those pieces about which I don’t care what others might think– it works for me.  And maybe just for me but it doesn’t matter.  It just clicks an internal switch for me.

Sitting here at the moment, looking at this painting, makes me want to translate something like it to a much larger format, maybe 4′ by 4′, where the impact of the forms and colors would resonate with the grander scale.

Maybe…

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GC Myers 2013- Moment Sublime smI delivered my work yesterday to the West End Gallery for this year’s solo exhibit, Islander.  The show, which hangs in the Corning gallery from July 26th until August 30, is something like my 37th or 38th solo show at different galleries around the country so there are common experiences with each that you begin to notice.  One is definitely the sense of relief that comes with delivering the show.

The work is done, everything framed and photographed, and in the gallery.  Seemingly , my job is done.  That’s not exactly true as there is always an aspect of the job that lingers after the work leaves the studio such as writing this and doing other promotional things that are required in order to spread the word about my work.  But for the most part, my work is done and I can step back to take a deep breath.

I generally notice a sense of exhaustion that sets in immediately after delivery, as though the tension of meeting a deadline has been a distraction from the tiredness that has been creeping in.  It’s a good exhaustion though, one that comes with knowing that I am totally satisfied with the work that I have done and have put in it as much as I could.

It’s a feeling much like the one I see in the painting featured above, Moment Sublime, a 9″ by 14″ painting on paper that is part of the show.  I suppose that is why I chose it for today’s post.  There is that same real sense of satisfaction in this image, a peaceful feeling of being only in the moment.  For me, after delivering the show, this means having no regrets about the work I have done and not concerning myself in that moment about the future results of the show or what comes next.

The task is done.  I am very happy with what I have done, feeling that it truthfully represents who I am at this moment.  All that I could ask.  In that instant, I am that Red Tree and the moment is indeed sublime…

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