Sunday, July 31, 2011

Affirmative Action

It is true that I sometimes anguish at painting, finding myself staring at my "progress" with my thoughts mired in tribulations, knowing that hundreds of greater pictures are sitting in museums not too far away, created by artists some younger than me. It is also true that I question why I spend so much of my time at it. But I tell myself to push forward with the work because that's what we do as people, as survivors -- we continue to till the land so we can eat. Although sometimes I am duped by a mirage, sometimes I am nourished by a flash of what I seek, and for a moment I understand the necessity of art and its connection to something bigger than life.

Affirmative Action, 28" x 36", oil, vintage paper and book cover on wood panel, 2011.

Some details of the painting:

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Alaska Inspiration

Discovery, 16" x 36", oil on canvas with rope and driftwood, 2011.

Following my recent adventure in Alaska, I find that the magnificence of the expansive wilderness cannot be adequately explained in this little blog.
Everything there is big: The glaciers are huge and imposing. The sudden appearance of a whale while kayaking in the sea shakes your soul -- the power of its breath forces you to imagine the enormity of its body below the surface. The black bears are abundant and the grizzlies are iconic, and the shoulders of a moose were higher than my head. Bald eagles perch along the rivers everywhere as the salmon are the center of the ecosystem.

Hiking above the treeline in the foggy mountains, and camping on top of mossy lichen where mountain sheep pass, it is clear that years are needed to explore the state and discover the unexpected.

Here are some photographs: