It has been a big week of art viewing for me. I admit that I am a homebody and I almost never travel. I get so overwhelmed by life and its many details and commitments that it's all I can do to deal with what's right in front of my nose.
But last week I finally had the time, energy and determination to look at art. Not just any art, GREAT ART. Wednesday I saw the tremendous exhibit of George Segal's work at the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth Art Gallery, curated by David B. Boyce, who was a personal friend of and model for the late Mr. Segal. And Friday I went to visit galleries in the Chelsea district of New York City, where I saw much that was great, including exhibits by Anselm Kiefer (Gagosian Gallery) and Brice Marden (Matthew Marks Gallery).
These experiences have truly changed my perspective, not just realizations about adaptations I want to make in my daily life and yearly goals, but also deep-rooted discoveries about who I am, what I want to make of my life and how I might go about doing so. Such is the power of art!!
And returning to my studio and looking at my latest works with these recent art-viewing experience fresh in my mind has given me direct insight into what I'm currently making and where it has the potential to go artistically.
Among many other things, I realize that I have been far more focused on resume-building than on art-creating. I don't mean time-wise, because I certainly paint many hours a week, especially for someone who teaches as much as I do. But as far as vision, as far as long-term focus, I realize I haven't been letting my art come from as deep a place as it could, or say as much as it could. I've been settling for short-term considerations, for work that's not bad but not fully developed.
I've been too afraid of what might happen, of ending up like someone I don't want to be like, instead of spreading my wings and seeing how far I can fly.
Time will tell how this new consciousness manifests itself, but I feel greatly changed inside. A wonderful way to end what has been a year of great progress!
Image shown above is a number of pieces from my new series of works on paper.