Sunday, August 14, 2011

Alice Neel

When I have time off from the studio, from the actual creation of images, I find myself immersed in art in a different way studying the art of the artists that I admire. Today has been a day to study Alice Neel. Neel was an artist with work worthy of study. How can you not be mesmerized by her line, her brushwork...I am totally in awe, this woman of the early twentieth century, born in 1900, who can teach so much.
I'll be moving my home soon and this process always brings up memories of past series of paintings, in this case it is the figure work that I did before the last momentus (to me) move that spawned a series of the best figure paintings that I have done. Moving is always stimulating to me almost always a good series of paintings ensue. I love to start over to stretch. The painting here is titled of course "Moving". Behind the figure are all the moving boxes as yet to be unpacked.

Not to intimate in any way that my paintings have a relationship to Neel's work but I feel a connection, be it just the fact that I was working freely after my move and certainly with no restrictions. When I look at the current series of paintings to be exhibited, I must say I feel almost disconnected from the past. The exhibit of the figures at Lynne Farris' Gallery was a gift, a cohesive body of work that said something about me though I still wouldn't hazard a guess what that is. I ask myself am I the same person, the same artist. I have passed into another world, another territory and looking back very briefly gives me a perspective. I'm not much for hanging on to the past. In fact, I am nortorious for ridding myself of any incumbrances. I am a minimalist at saving when it comes to things including artwork. But I do save images and occasionally a glance back is worth it.

I liked what Alice's son said about her, "She teaches you to never give up".

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