Sep 9, 2012

the last few months

I'll start with this little shack in Minnesota that sits on a spring fed lake surrounded by pine and spruce trees. Here I swam, hiked, read, stared off into space, and then at night stared down into fires and out into stars.  This trip marked the end of the summer of 2012, a time when I paced around the studio with a torch in hand trying to muster up the courage to burn the fallow fields.

In June I had my first exhibition at L Ross Gallery.  The show was with Carl Moore, a  Memphis painter I've admired a long time.  We decided to title the show "I Can See Your House From the Highway" as a nod to the experience of two painters living in the same town and witnessing each other's evolution over time.  It speaks to the experience of making art alone and making art within a community.

The paintings for this show came pouring out last winter and spring with such abundance that I assumed the momentum would sustain itself throughout the summer.  Well, it didn't.  Instead, I stopped dead in my tracks as everything came to a screeching halt.  Even though I know that sometimes this is a necessary part of the life cycle of a studio practice, the whole thing just made me mad and uncomfortable. Since I didn't have much control over the stand still, I decided to relax a bit and let it happen. I slashed and burned by tearing things apart and putting them back together - sifting, sorting, cleaning, and  lots of staring off into space in the middle of it all. 

It feels good to look back on this work after a few months of going inward. This year marks ten years of painting abstraction and these pieces represent the culmination of that time and focus. When I set out to make them my intention was simply to stand on the shoulders of my own discoveries these past ten years and see what happens.  

A closer look...

The Anchored, 34" x 38"

Everyone is Involved, 48" x 48" 

No Two Days Sound the Same, 60" x 36" 

The Next Three Days, 38" x 34"
 She Told Me Her Story, 24" x 24"

 McLemore Avenue, 24" x 24"

The Pillow You Dream On, 18" x 18"

 Our Morning Walk Around, 18" x 18"

The Unsayable, 18" x 18"

A shift is happening in my studio that's hard to put words around, so I won't even try.  For now, I'll keep showing up, read, be engaged in my community and talk with other artists, stare off into space, play with materials, play in general, and soon something will sprout out from those burned up fields.