Archive for July, 2010
One of the things I like best about photography is capturing the intimate moments that would otherwise be left unseen without the snap of the shutter. I like how this piece captures that, especially how the subjects are shown in silhouette in a private world of their own making surrounded by the linnearities and colors of their own private environment. It reminds me of being a young girl and playing with my sister and making up our own imaginary worlds from which we could amuse ourselves. It is the world we found in fairy tales, denoted by the lush blues and greens of the outdoors.
As an artist and a photographer I am constantly obsessed with documentation. For years, I have been collecting photos of the working spaces of artists. I find myself fascinated by the studio setting and the elements that individual artists surround themselves with to work within. It started at a young age after reading a Francis Bacon biography about his notorious studio that was filled with a central heap of junk and torn pages from magazines and books from which he would pull inspiration in the crumpled pieces of paper, warped faces of models and subjects in the pile, and the eternal chaos that this junk heap added to his already busy brain while painting. I loved how the pile informed his work and brought a sense of understanding of his process to the viewer. Years later I visited Ed Moses’ Venice Beach studio with a museum group and was thrilled to see the bits of a painter in process through scattered notebooks with scribbles, large concrete slabs in the backyard upon which he trawled a squeegie on a long pole across magnificent washes of paint on canvas on the ground to create his watery blends of color, and the quirky stenciled spiders that adorned random surfaces on his property that he told us helped with his fear of spiders. In instances like this I realized that the artist’s spaces to create were just as interesting as the finished products themselves and that you could garner alot about an artist’s personality from seeing these spaces. I became fascinated enough to start to document these spaces and have spent years taking photos of these visual bits of the art psyche. Maybe someday I will compile them into a book.
One of the joys of being an artist is collaborating with others artists and seeing what emerges. Whether similar or disparate in individual voice, it’s always interesting to see what happens when two unique styles, techniques, and visions combine, resulting in a unified whole of an artwork. One of my close friends and wise mentors of the sister/goddess/womanhood is artist Shaktima Brien. We have spent many creative hours together over the last five years and recently spent a day in her home studio creating two pieces together. Large rolls of canvas tacked up on the wall, red wine, dark chocolate, nuts and French music provided the perfect atmosphere to dive into the zone. The first (above) was inspired by Picasso’s “Two Women”, in which two sundress clad, sensual and zaftig females sprint hand in hand across a serene beige field underneath a cobalt blue sky. Armed with the colors of Picasso’s painting and no direction other than to be inspired and see what transpires, we found ourselves educing two figures on a background that evoked our own desert home with the windmills in the distance. Without intention (other than pure flow) we ended up creating two archetypal females that could be denoted as the innocent led by the crone – a fabulous and spontaneous metaphor that pleased us both.
Our second creation, inspired by a Francis Bacon painting of a man looking into a mirror at his own self portrait (as seen above in the blurred frenetic midst of Shaktima’s application) became an interesting icon of Lady Liberty swathed in Grecian drapery reflecting on the new world and its connection to the arts and literature, the world we both lusciously swim and and are connected to while simultaneously holding on to the poetry of our individual passions.