Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Tangerine Dream

Oil on Canvas 28"x22"
This uses my favorite themes, streaking sunlight, fruit, and for me, an unusual composition.
One thing I've been thinking a lot of while I have been struggling with these canvases is what the word beauty actually means. I know that the idea of beauty is the prime motivation behind the choice of painting as an avocation. There is a part of my character, I'll call it the manager, that couldn't care less about beauty, and it figures that I could do a lot better in some other pursuit. Most people, when it comes to the nitty gritty of life, don't put a lot of value on the idea of beauty, relating it to the notion of cosmetics and or decoration.
The artist in me, challenging the utilitarian manager part, says, try living in a world without beauty and see if you could actually sustain your spirit. That challenge got me thinking, well what is it exactly? The notion that beauty is a presence, an awareness, came to my attention. Beauty accepts what is, including ugliness, and then somehow finds a way, through relationships, to something more, something beyond. Beauty is always suggesting, pointing somewhere, moving someplace.
The importance for me is that the presence of beauty shows that we are in a world alive with intention, and not in a machine world where everything is predetermined, where everything is essentially lifeless. So the idea came that a successful painting is one where the presence of beauty is felt, the immediacy jumps off the canvas, giving it a compelling quality without any one thing being obvious.


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