Gladiolas are a favorite flower and this was an exceptionally beautiful bunch, and while past prime, the richness of its color is still amazing. No they aren’t from my garden but a perfect segue . . . to being in the garden. My spring garden project this year was growing one of my botanical nemeses, wild flowers from seed. I lavished my attentions on garden endeavors providing a welcome distraction from the fits and starts that momentarily defined my studio efforts. This one took its bloody sweet time and having survived my relentless attacks, earned naming. Long Shores Meddling Beast #181After all that, back to something a little less chaotic, some space to breath. It’s inspired by the memory of a tranquil afternoon, backpacking in the Grand Canyon, watching the sun set on The Howlands Butte. The butte is named after two brothers killed in the canyon by Shivwits Indians in 1869. I’d started work on this canvas over a year ago then promptly ignored it. Now its mood fit mine and so back to work. Figures pirouette crimson in a misty field of ghostly white . When I set a Trap for You in an Appropriate Floating Reflection #151 .Pieces. I’ve a list of criteria guiding how and when I cut and reassemble, and #151 checked all the boxes. Take a photo of the painting. Print several copies. Cut into pieces. Paste together. Photograph. Print. This is what I got. A six inch by seven inch image, and a ledge to jump from.Landing here. Sideways on top. More pieces. Pieces of then. Pieces of now. This amalgamation driving the work forward. A synthesis of experiences molded by the passage of time and finding the words to name it. At the moment it’s just canvas #7. Thirty by thirty inches. In development.The process. Something to use. This time it’s pictures of the twisted, bent and knotted. Shot in close and tight, capturing the language of circumstance with a story to tell. And this is where they end up. Taped to the studio painting wall. A methodology authenticating belief. Images manipulated, themes extracted, geometries applied, perceptions tuned to desires needs.
An experiment. Adjustments three through eleven. Images of two paintings disassembled, co-mingled, reconstructed, photographed, and drawn on. Ink Jet print on copy paper, graphite and color pencil.
The Acacia tree has gone crazy. It’s an African Fever Acacia that produces round fuzzy yellow flowers . . . acres and acres of them. A carpet of them. Keeping on top of this onslaught takes tools. For yard work it’s the rake. I prefer metal tined, long wood handles, and having several rakes of different widths, help make my raking more productive. The tree, besides being a prodigious flower producing monster that’s covered with needle sharp thorns, the tree’s expansive mottled shade and lovely green ever exfoliating bark marks it a gem of a tree and the time spent tending it . . . well spent. Illustrated are the protagonists. The tree, the flowers, and one of the three rakes.
I’m an opportunistic gardener. My aesthetic is definitely on the wild side. So while I do plant, I also allow whatever sprouts a period of grace . . . then . . . impress me, or get the hook. It’s that time and I’m feeling spring-ish, thus a mashup of a few favorites from those wild, planted, and potted inhabitants coloring my garden.