Good morning and welcome to the Saturday after Roe v. Wade was overturned. I find myself walking a fine line between desolation and rage … so I thought I would sit here for a few moments and catch y’all up on what I’ve been working on in the studio. (Boy it’s hard to focus on this but it feels like a lifeline I simply must cling to. Desolation and rage are both pretty awful places to be and I just need to turn my eyes somewhere else …)
As you all know I’ve been toying with both abstraction and stencils lately. It’s become clear to me that physical technique exploration has been more a motivating force for me than color or mood or emotion lately. This all makes sense. It’s very comfortable and challenging in a calculating way that is soothing for my brain.
I decided, a few months ago, to try my hand at using adhesive papers (also called stickers in these parts) to limit paint movement on the canvas. I measured and put together some guidelines for three circles, precise and obedient, to get on a canvas.
And then I cut those three circles from a piece of shipping label paper I had (I buy the full sheet ones because they are SO HANDY). And I stuck those mofo’s on there, just like I’d planned them. Oh the precision and exactness is just charming!
And then the exactness went all haywire as I slopped a mountain of paint on the canvas with my palette knife and danced about to ‘My Sharona’ and just had a gay old time.
And then the satisfaction of peeling them off! Holy smokes that’s a fun moment. It didn’t all go as planned given I was too impatient to wait for the paint to cure even a small bit! I just ripped those bad boys off and BOOM precision lost but a shadow of it remains and that seems appropriate and realistic. Best laid plans do that, this is life and this is the way.
I tossed a little bit of naples yellow/zinc white in the circles to cover the canvas in those spots and now I sit with it – satisfied with the first steps … and completely ignorant of the next ones.
This has been hanging in my studio now for at least a month and I have no clue where it will go next. I’m also juggling eight? other pieces, lots of drawings, a lampshade that just wants to be something more and a pandemic and children and work and … here’s where I round back around … The damn supreme court and the ramifications for my daughters and the awareness that these infringements on our bodily autonomy isn’t really new, everyone is just being clearer about it.
I’m trying my damndest not to shut down, to continue to be bold and fight and scrap my way through this world. But it’s hard today, harder than yesterday in some ways. I don’t know where to go next with myself. I wonder at creation and where it fits into all of this. I wonder at my own fury and where it ends up. And I seem to want a nap, even though I just woke up.
Gods I love you all and am happy and proud to walk this planet with you … and I feel like we all need to do better, maybe we’ve needed to for a long time. I don’t know what that looks like for you or for myself but it seems a thing to ponder.
I’ll update this once I have a bit more to show, it may be slow going.
Well, after writing this the other day I was inspired to stare a the piece until I found a direction and what a lovely direction it all good. I wanted red in there, because I love the pop and fury of the color, and I wanted some dimension that wasn’t red, something to draw the eye away from the most obvious focal point (the circles). And I did this.
And boy am I pleased! Once this cures a bit I’ll go back in for some touch ups (the white area above the bottom circle in particularly distracting)… but this is pretty well done. Booyah!!