To throw oneself into an activity with
passion and abandon, and then lose the comfort of what has always
been safe and known . . . this is the path of artistic discovery. I
imagine Michelangelo, (1475-1564) confronting an immense slab of
white marble, and wondering what is waiting for his hands to bring
forth. No doubt he felt a bit of fear to embark on such a grand task
as to chisel a sculpture such as the masterpiece David. What
did Christopher Columbus, (1451-1506) feel when he looked out to the
ocean's horizon and wonder what distant land waited for discovery?
The immensity of the sea is quite capable of swallowing everything
puny in its path. More recently, in art annals, is the story of
Jackson Pollack, (1912-1956) who abandoned painting recognizable
figures and instead hurled fluid color in all directions across his
canvases. He famously said, "When
I am in
painting, I'm not aware of what I'm doing. It is only after a sort of
'get acquainted' period that I see what I have been about. I have no
fears about making changes, destroying the image, etc, because the
painting has a life of its own. I try to let it come through. It is
only when I lose contact with the painting that the result is a mess.
Otherwise there is pure harmony, an easy give and take, and the
painting comes out well."
|Oil on linen, 17 x 21 inches|
There have been many great artists who have come face to face with the unknown and been
challenged to enter the ring, rather than stand to the sidelines.
Perhaps this was a reason Pablo Picasso, (1881-1973) loved going to
bullfights. When the matador enters the ring with the bull, the
outcome is not known . . . certainly either the animal or the man
will die. The man depends on his talent to guide him and gain the
adulation of the crowd.
I have begun experimenting painting with three colors only: red,
black and white.
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