Posts Tagged ‘Traveler’

GC Myers- Confessor Blue smYet another Sunday morning finds me in the studio working.  My show, Traveler,  at the Principle Gallery ends this week and my next show, Layers at the West End Gallery, opens in a few weeks on July 25th so there hasn’t been much of a break.  But that’s okay, I like the busyness and purposefulness of it.  It forces me to keep my head down and concentrate.  To forge ahead instead of being distracted by shiny things, something to which I , like many others, am prone.

Not that distraction is a bad thing.  You find interesting things when you allow your eyes and mind to wander and that, too, eventually finds its way into your work.  But that is for another time when there is a deadline involved.

So, its back to work.

But it is Sunday and I have made a habit of having some music on this day’s posts.  This week I am featuring one of my favorites, Neko Case, who I have featured many times over the years.  This is Night Still Comes from her most recent CD, The Worse Things Get, The Harder I Fight, The Harder I Fight, The More I Love You– which is quite a mouthful.  I chose the painting above to go along with it.  Its title is  Confessor Blue and its one of the remaining paintings at the Principle Gallery show.

Enjoy and have a great Sunday…

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GC Myers-Quester's Path smIn the attitude of silence the soul finds the path in an clearer light, and what is elusive and deceptive resolves itself into crystal clearness. Our life is a long and arduous quest after Truth.

-Mahatma Gandhi


      I write a lot about the search for something and in reality I have no idea what that thing is.  Gandhi says that  it is Truth that we seek.  His Truth may be the same as the wisdom that others claim to be seeking.  Others say that life is a search for self or love or to shatter loneliness.

      As for me, I just don’t know.  I have thought it was many things over the years– truth, self, wisdom and a place to fit in.  But none of those ever truly fit for me.  I am not sure I am equipped with the wisdom to handle the truth and, as far as fitting in, I gave up on that some time back.  And I have the self too elusive a thing to seek for too long. It sometime feels like looking for a Bigfoot– you think you may have found it but it always ends up not being what you hoped.

      So I am left filled with even more uncertainty.  And I think this uncertainty is a good thing because it makes me believe that the real quest is for a reason, a purpose for our existence.  And maybe that makes the quest the  real purpose– to be aware of our world, our lives.  To hold up each day, to examine each moment.  Maybe in each moment there is that truth, that wisdom. that sense of self and inclusion, if only we look with some uncertainty, not knowing why we do so.

      But as I say, I don’t know.


The painting at the top is Quester’s Path and is 8″ by 14″ on paper.  It is part of the show, Traveler, at the Principle Gallery.


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GC Myers Shambhala smJust a reminder that my show, Traveler, is currently on view at the Principle Gallery and will be hanging there until July 9th.  One of the pieces still available is the piece above,  Shambhala, an 18″ by 36″ canvas piece that I wrote about on this blog back in early March.   It’s a painting that I feel very strongly about.  Since that was three months before the show went up, I thought I might replay that post today.  In March, I wrote:

According to Buddhist tradition, Shambhala is name given to what they consider the Pure Land, a utopia of sorts whose reality is as much spiritual as it is physical.  A place where everyone achieves a state of enlightenment and peace and tranquility.  Author James Hilton morphed the name into Shangri-La for his novel Lost Horizon which describes a group of Westerners who find themselves the guests in a small idyllic nation of this name tucked away in a protected Himalayan valley.

Whatever you call it, the idea of a place of enlightenment and peace seems pretty attractive to me these days, given the many events going on in the world being driven forward by such negative factors as greed, hate and fear.  That tranquil inner place is what I see in this new painting, an 18″ by 36″ canvas that carries this name, Shambhala.  The road , for me, represents the search that leads to this elusive state and the sun  a blissful guide with a warm lure that radiates throughout the sky.  The Red Tree is on a small peninsula set into a calm body of water, still attached to the world  but in an ethereal space.  It is in a state of being where it is firmly in the moment, having set aside the past and disregarding the future.  Just absorbing the now.

That’s what I see and that is what I imagine how that moment might feel but I am still on that path, looking ahead for a sight of that hopeful destination.


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GC Myers-Peerless sm

“Peerless” – Included in the “Traveler ” Show

I am back in the studio this morning  after returning from Friday night’s opening of Traveler at the Principle Gallery.  There is  a sense of relief in the aftermath, a deep exhalation at having mostly completed my obligations for the show.  But there is often a letdown as well,  a combination of having passed the endpoint  you’ve been working towards for months and  natural self-doubts about things you might have done differently in this show.  Fortunately, this show left me with only the mildest of letdowns.  I am already focused on my next projects and as far as doubts, while there may be just a few minor ones, I am sure that I have done all that was in my power for this show and the work in it.

We had a lovely few days in Alexandria, blessed with the best weather we’ve seen in all the years that we have been visiting in early June.  In the past, we have often endured 100° temperatures, torrential rains and excruciating humidity on this weekend.  But this year it was as perfect as the weather could possibly offer with temps in the high 70’s, blue cloudless skies and low humidity .   I am available for other  regional  weather reports, as well!  In short, perfect conditions to wander around the area a bit before the show.

We attended the ceremony  at the World War II Memorial honoring the living veterans on the 70th anniversary of the D-Day Invasion.  It was a beautiful setting there on the Mall, often moving,  and I felt very honored to be able to spend a short time in the near presence of those vets who survived that day of days.  We also were able to see the Andrew Wyeth show at the National Gallery that I wrote of earlier in the week.  It was wonderful to see so much of his work together, to be able to see the constancy and consistency of his personal vision as well as his ability to capture deep emotion within his scenes.

All in all, it was a great stay.  But the highlight was being to see many of the folks that I have met over the years who opted to spend some time at the gallery instead of out in that perfect weather.  I know that if I were in their shoes, it would have taken a lot to get  me there.  But for the many who did turn out and to Michele and her great staff– Clint, Jessica, Pamela and Chris along with guest bartender, Fernando Ascencio– I  extend a simple and grateful Thank You.  I wouldn’t be here right now writing this if not for you all.  And that I will always remember.

Okay, it is Sunday morning and we need to music.  I was thinking something calming while I decompress.  Here’s a classic Vince Guaraldi composition, Cast Your Fate to the Wind.  It has some of those same elements that you might recognize from his iconic work with the Peanuts gang.

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I am on the road today so  being short on time  I am reposting a short entry from a couple of months back, in early April.  I normally don’t repost articles so soon after they first appear but I consider this painting, Proclamation,  an important part of my show , Traveler, which opens tomorrow night at the Principle Gallery in Alexandria, VA.  It represents for me the culmination of the journey, the end point for which the entire journey was made.  It is about a true realization of self, of attainment of goal .  And therein lays the central theme of this show– that our lives can have direction and purpose.

So, without any more words, here is what I posted earlier:

GC Myers- Proclamation By health I mean the power to live a full, adult, living, breathing life in close contact with what I love — the earth and the wonders thereof — the sea — the sun. All that we mean when we speak of the external world. A want to enter into it, to be part of it, to live in it, to learn from it, to lose all that is superficial and acquired in me and to become a conscious direct human being. I want, by understanding myself, to understand others. I want to be all that I am capable of becoming so that I may be (and here I have stopped and waited and waited and it’s no good — there’s only one phrase that will do) a child of the sun. About helping others, about carrying a light and so on, it seems false to say a single word. Let it be at that. A child of the sun.

Katherine Mansfield

October, 1922, Her final journal entry


I came across this final journal entry from the writer Katherine Mansfield, who died much too early from tuberculosis at age 35, and thought how much her words fit what I was thinking about this newer painting shown above. I call this 30″ by 40″ painting Proclamation and the thought and feeling it may be proclaiming might very well be the same as those expressed by Mansfield.

It is a painting that speaks of coming to an understanding of one’s self and stepping forward in the light to show that true identity. It is at once flawed and beautiful. Flawed by the scars of attained wisdom and change. Beautiful because it is honest and real, open to the elements and all who look upon it. It has become, to use Mansfield’s term, a child of the sun.

I think it would be too easy to say too much here.

Let it be at that. A child of the sun.

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GC Myers-  Find Your Way The  painting shown here on the right is a24″ by 36″ on canvas and is part of  my solo exhibit which opens Friday at the Principle Gallery in Alexandria.  It’s title is Find Your Way which fits neatly in with the show’s title, Traveler.  As concepts, both this painting and this show have to do with moving forward and discovering new territories within, becoming more than you were when the journey began.  Continuous seeking, sometimes plodding along, all to find that internal sense of comfort and belonging that some might refer to as home.  That place where your external reality one day matches your internal reality.

I’m not sure that was my goal when I began painting just a little over twenty years ago.  I knew that I needed to travel from that place inside where I had been dwelling and color and form became a vehicle for me, one that would carry me emotionally to new horizons and vistas, closer to that place where I might feel comfortably at home, inside and out.

And it has.

I am closer to home but it’s a journey that will most likely not end until my final day.  And that’s okay because I have come to appreciate the lessons of the trek and the sight of the new horizon coming into view, knowing that I am further along than I was it all began.

A big part of my journey has been my affiliation with a few galleries, all with which I have had long relationships, who have allowed me to continually keep searching  for that place that I don’t even know.  I began with the Principle Gallery in early 1997 and had my first solo show there in 2000.  It is where the Red Tree was born and this year marks fifteen years that they have allowed me to chronicle my internal travels in a show there each year.  It has been my great pleasure to have stumbled into such a wonderful place with such warm and real people, a place that makes me feel closer to home during this journey.

There’s a full preview of the show below that I quickly put together.  I hope it gives you that sense of the continuity of effort and purpose from image to image that I see.

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GC Myers-The Ferryman smOne of the new paintings that is part of my solo show, Traveler,  at the Principle Gallery is a small piece titled The Ferryman.  It’s a depiction of a man poling a small boat across a body of water, simply constructed with the impact coming from its starkness and the intensity of its color.  It’s a theme that I have revisited several times over the years.  Perhaps it is the symbolic nature of the crossing or the essential nature of a single individual propelling themselves forward.

Probably both apply to my reasoning  for returning to this theme.

Whatever the case, it is a theme that has resonated with others over these years and recently struck a chord with author Thomas William Simpson, who was looking for appropriate artwork for his new book, The Ferryman: 8 Crossings to a Gentler Life.  He came across images of my prior ferrymen pieces and got in touch with me.  The result was this painting which graces the cover of his book which is a parable of sorts.

Here is the book description from Amazon:

Thomas William Simpson-The Ferryman Cover  / GC Myers art This short tale about a man’s desire to live a different kind of life unfolds during a single day. At the crack of dawn the ferryman opens his eyes to find an impatient businessman nudging him with his foot. The businessman demands they cross the river. Now. Right away. Not a minute to spare. The ferryman rises and offers tea and scones. The businessman says he has no time for tea and scones. He needs to reach the other side. Progress and profits depend on it. The ferryman understands. Before becoming a simple ferryman he had been a striver bristling with ambition, always angling to close the next deal. He had manipulated and deceived to accomplish his aims. He had believed material wealth the only true measure of success. But he cannot just yet haul the businessman across the river. He must wait for the old woman. The old woman is sick and needs to see the doctor on the other side. The Ferryman is an amusing and tender tale that attempts to shine a wide light on what might actually matter in life. Yes, we have our necessities: food and shelter, security and transportation. But what beyond these basics truly has relevance? The ferryman, who has been a humble ferryman for several years by the time we meet him, has identified eight (8) crossings that have changed his life, he thinks, for the better. By better the ferryman means richer, deeper, less stressful, more joyful. The crossings have civilized the ferryman. Benevolence in all things, the ferryman has come to believe, is the surest way to peace of mind. And really what greater gift can we bestow upon ourselves than a quiet and contented mind? Come ride the ferry with the ferryman. It’s a pleasant, scenic journey filled with small gifts, interesting characters, and boundless miracles. The Ferryman is a tale of self discovery you will read over and over as your own journey passes back and forth across the river of life. Thomas William Simpson is the author of such diverse novels as The Immortal, Full Moon Over America, The Fingerprints of Armless Mike, and This Way Madness Lies. His curiosity for the human condition, as evidenced in The Ferryman, knows no bounds.

Simpson is a very talented and well known author with an impressive resume with books, such as The Caretaker, The Hancock Boys, This Way Madness Lies  and The Editor, that have sold hundreds of thousands of copies and have garnered widespread critical acclaim.  It has been a pleasure working with Mr. Simpson and an honor to have my artwork on the cover of his book.  Please check out his website, Simpson Books,  which is very informative on his writings and his career journey.

If you would like to purchase The Ferryman, click here or on the book cover above to be taken to its Amazon page.

If you would like to see the original painting for this cover, it is currently at the Principle Gallery in Alexandria, VA as part of Traveler, my solo show opening this coming Friday.  It is a modest sized painting, only 5″ by 9″ on paper.  Stop in and see it.

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9914-152 Purifying Light smWell, the work for my  fifteenth show, Traveler, at the Principle Gallery has been delivered and now there is some time to exhale a bit before the opening this coming Friday, June 6.  It was a good trip yesterday with no complications during the drive , stunning weather and a really nice time at the gallery–  such a warm and upbeat group of  people there. While there, a  friend  popped in for a good visit and I also  met a few other  interesting folks, including one who also had a family connection to the early logging trade in the Adirondacks.  There is a good possibility that our great-grandfathers knew one another in those days of the late 19th century when that part of the mountains was abuzz with lumbermen.  But that is a story for another time.

Delivering the show brought the usual feeling of relief that comes with completing a task but without the anxiety that often accompanies it as I wait to see if the show will be successful.  I suppose I have enough experience with this scenario to know that things always work out if I have put in the effort.  And I have.  This show was very satisfying, during the process when I was the creator and in the aftermath when I became an observer.  There were pieces that came from hard fought struggles and some that seemed to fall from the hand with no effort, each ultimately achieving that life of their own to which I often refer.  In the end, it all seemed to come together very well.  I will be eager to see how it hangs in the space.  I hope that if you are in the area, you can stop in and see the show.

It’s a Sunday morning , which means it’s time for a little music and I thought today I would feature something from Leonard Cohen.  I chose the song Anthem simply because of the chorus that goes  Ring the bells that still can ring/ Forget your perfect offering/There is a crack, a crack in everything/ That’s how the light gets in .  That has long been a theme in my work.  My second show at the Principle Gallery was titled Seeking Imperfection because I felt it was the imperfection  in the work that made it brought it to life, that gave evidence of the imperfect person behind it.  To me, perfection was cold and sterile concept, far from the human experience.  I wanted the blood and heat of humanity in my work.  Maybe that’s why red has been such a vital color in my visual vocabulary.  Perhaps the piece shown at the top is a good example of this.  Purifying Light, a 20″ by 60″ canvas, is part of the show.

Anyway, here is Anthem from Leonard Cohen.  Have a great Sunday!




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9914-169 Excelsior smI call this new painting Excelsior and I showing it today in honor of  young Sriram Hathwar of nearby Painted Post who last night became this year’s co-champion in the Scripps National Spelling Bee.  We have followed Sriram’s quest for the past seven years, half of his young life.  Last year Sriram came coming tantalizingly close to his goal of victory with a third place finish but third place just didn’t satisfy his desire to be the best and over the past year he worked hard to make his dream come true in his final opportunity.  He and co-champion, Ansun Sujoe of Ft. Worth,  Texas, showed incredible composure and grace in a pressure-packed situation that would overwhelm  most adults, let alone quiet, studious 14 year olds.  Sriram even cracked a joke, saying Gesundheit after the reader spoke the word he was to spell at one point.  One cool customer.

I chose this piece to accompany this post because of its title, Excelsior, which means Ever Upward.  I thought it would be a fitting title as well as a fitting image to  illustrate a young man’s quest for excellence.  There’s a quality in this piece of basking in the moment, taking pause to reflect on the journey and all of the hard effort it required to reach this lofty point.  I hope that Sriram takes a moment to  really appreciate his accomplishment before moving on to his next challenge.  But I know that it will be only a moment because the word Excelsior  does mean Ever Upward.

Excelsior, Sriram!


This painting, Excelsior, is  18″ by 26″ on paper and will be at the Principle Gallery as part of my upcoming solo show there.  The show, Traveler, opens June 6 at the Alexandria, VA gallery.


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Blow up your TV , throw away your paper
Go to the country, build you a home
Plant a little garden, eat a lot of peaches
Try and find Jesus on your own

–John Prine, Spanish Pipedream


GC Myers- Pipedream smThis is a small new painting  that is about 6″ by 11″ on paper.  I call it Pipedream after the old John Prine song, Spanish Pipedream.   I say old but it ‘s one of those songs that never feels old to me despite the fact that it came out back in 1971, forty three years ago.  It is old.  One hint of its age is at the beginning of the song when he says he was a soldier on the way to Montreal, referring to fleeing north to avoid the war and the draft.   But it’s still such an infectious chorus with a message that so hits the point that I still find myself humming this song quite often.

I guess this painting’s simplicity and cheery feel made me think of this song.  There is something very idyllic  and charmingly essential  in this little guy.  It does look a bit like a pipedream, which is one of those words that we often use while not thinking about  its origin or meaning.  This word, pipedream, is from Victorian era Britain and refers to an improbable fantasy dreamt of while smoking opium.  Maybe this is an improbable fantasy?   It does have a fantasy feel about it but lets hope it is not so improbable.

This is, of course, one opf the pieces from my show, Traveler, opening next Friday at the Principle Gallery in Alexandria.  Now here’s the song  from one of my favorites, John Prine.

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