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Posts Tagged ‘Tom Jones’

9913217-fragments-sm“All there is, is fragments, because a man, even the loneliest of the species, is divided among several persons, animals, worlds. To know a man more than slightly it would be necessary to gather him together from all those quarters, each last scrap of him, and this done after he is safely dead.”
Coleman Dowell, Island People

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It’s been hard finding footing lately in the studio.  It’s been hard to just get started on most days.  There are plenty of factors that play in to this, some external and some internal, some that I can control and some I cannot.  But the end result is the same: I am left feeling fragmented, broken into shards that don’t want to reassemble easily in the form of my work.

I am not worried however.  This is not the first time I’ve felt so fragmented nor will it be the last.  I know that I come apart at times and have to bide my time, just continuing to try to put myself back together so that I may uncover what I know is waiting there for me.

It’s there. It may seem an awfully long way away but I can see it and I know that while it may take time and much effort, I shall be together with it again.

The painting above is a piece that has been with me for a while now.  One of the orphans that come home to reside for a bit.  I wrote about it last year when I thought I might change its name to Dimming of the Day but it still remains under its original title, Fragments, in my mind.  And I suspect it will stay that way.

This painting is based very much on this feeling that I am experiencing at this moment and when this feeling emerges, I often think of this painting.  There is darkness and distance here.  The space between the Red Chair and the house has a certain weight that makes me feel as though there is something more than physical distance at play here. The sky, a confetti-like blend of thousands of little fragments of brushstrokes that gave the painting its title originally,  represents, for me at least in this piece, the world falling out of harmony.

Dark, distant and coming apart.

Yet despite that I find this painting very comforting.  I think that goes back to what I said above, that I know this place well from past experience .  I know how to navigate it and know that the distance is not so great nor the darkness too deep.  And I know that the parts are still in place to come together again in the future if I simply exercise patience and don’t give in.

It’s funny how that works.  I walk by this painting several times a day in the studio and it’s often without a thought as my mind is preoccupied with something else.  But every so often I stop before it and suddenly all of these feelings flood back on me when I look closer.  I’m glad it works that way, actually.

Here’s a nice version of the Richard Thompson song whose title, Dimming of the Day,  I was thinking about renaming this painting.  It’s a strong yet tender version from Tom Jones.  Have a good day…

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GC Myers- Two Sides  Aww, change the channel.  It’s a rerun…

Wait, it’s not another rerun, just another mass shooting/ terror event in Anytown, USA.

Another episode of America- The Series.

Same basic script– crazy ideologue(s) with automatic weaponry goes into a school/church/community center and kills multiple people before dying in a firefight with responding police forces.  Insert a montage of non-stop cable news network coverage with “experts” and politicians  praying and posturing in clips of some saying there are too many guns and others who say we need to be even more armed.

You could even insert a clip here of a nutty bible college president — let’s have him played by Jerry Falwell, Jr. of Liberty College–saying he wanted the students on his campus to have carry/conceal permits so they could “shoot the Muslims.”  Because that’s the kind of measured rational response we expect from those entrusted to lead our kids.  Besides, nothing says safety like an arena filled with armed college age kids.  Kids with inflated self-images emboldened by being raised on a diet of action movie heroes who are somehow never hit by the hail of bullets from their enemies and in a culture of video games that cheapens life.

Seems reasonable to me.  There certainly won’t be any confusion or problems with law enforcement agencies when some of those young armed students are of  African or Middle Eastern descent.  I see a spin-off in the future.

The script plays out for a few days of hand-wringing and funerals but little real action before fading to black.  Hit replay and do it all over again.

That’s seems to be the gist of it.  I wish whoever is writing this crap would come up with a new storyline.

996-226 Elvis in the WildernesssmI am going to change the channel now.  It’s time for Sunday music and I’ve been singing this song all week.  It’s the Tom Jones version of Elvis Presley Blues which was written and performed originally by Gillian Welch.  I am a big fan of Gillian Welch and love her version but I really admire Tom Jones’ take on it as well.  It’s pared down accompaniment really highlights the power of his voice which is still formidable even at age 75.

The images shown here are from my Outlaws series from back in 2006.  The one at the top is Two Sides and the one to the left is Elvis in the Wilderness.  I thought they fit today.

Enjoy the song and have a good Sunday.

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Giovanni-Bellini- The Resurrection 1475It’s Easter Sunday.  As I’ve pointed out here in the past, I had no religion of any sort in my upbringing so Easter was  a holiday marked by coloring eggs and eating big chunks of chocolate rabbits and multi-colored jelly beans for somewhat vague reasons.  Most things came down to the food involved for me in my youth.

Of course, I picked up on the tales behind the religious holidays I had eaten my way through as a kid.  And it’s hard to not be moved by the tale of the Resurrection, even from a decidedly non-religious perspective.  Whether you are a believer or non-believer, the tale of rebirth creates a template of hope for all people so that they may endure the many hardships of this life and rebuild new lives from failed pasts.

And it takes on even more significance when that new life is devoted to some purpose that is greater than our own needs.

The painting at the top is The Resurrection, painted by the great Giovanni Bellini, my favorite Renaissance painter, around 1479.  Just a beautiful piece, as most of his work is.

It being Sunday, it’s time for a little music.  I thought I would continue the theme of Resurrection into the music today.  Of course, after seeing this video, some of you might put me down as some sort of heretic.  It’s a song called The Resurrection Shuffle which was  a minor Trans-Atlantic hit in the early 70’s for a British band called Ashton, Gardner & Dyke.  It wasn’t a big hit, maybe just into the top 40, but I remembered the chorus.  Looking it up this morning I came across this version from Cher‘s self-titled television show in 1976 that features her in a duet with Tom Jones, who performed the song in his act for many years.  Maybe it is heresy but it made me laugh if only for the visual impact.  Maybe it will make you smile as well.

Have a great Sunday.

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