Not satisfied yet, but getting where I want to be; that is, closer to something that is honest and real, which equals beauty. The title for the painting, Sacred vulture, came from p. 280 of Roosevelt’s African Trip by F. W. Unger, 1909, another PUL gem. The image, and the words beneath it, reminded me of paintings of flayed and bound figures of the Baroque period. Jusepe de Ribera’s images of Apollo and Marsyas, and St. Bartholomew being my favorites, but images of Prometheus also come to mind. It is interesting that I am looking at a book about Roosevelt’s big game hunting while I am reading another book: Gender, Humiliation and Global Security by Evelin Lindner, 2010. Lindner is advocating a move towards love to save ourselves and our planet. The Roosevelt book, filled with images of animals being slaughtered, powerfully illustrates why Lindner is right.
My nephew, Alex came over yesterday to get some help completing his senior project. He didn’t need much, as he is a natural. This is his portrait of Lil Wayne. Alex’s Auntie had not heard of this rap star, but is very happy that her nephew made the trip out to see her, and was delighted to be of some help.
Family: My biological family, my lover, my friends, people I work with, pass on the street, read, and dream about. Animals, pictures of them, and people I never knew, enter my mind, and sometimes, cause my heart to ache; collectively, they create a gentle buffer to protect me in this world.
It is a grey day today, and maybe that is why I woke up this morning thinking about these paintings. I painted them in the early 2000’s, I think. Sometimes I wonder if I should only make art that is in black and white, and various shades of grey. Drawing was my first love. My father traveled to Europe a lot when I was younger, and he would bring me back beautful art books. I would draw from them for hours. A book of drawings by Michelangelo was my favorite. These paintings have reminded me of that love for shades of grey. Now, I love the old photographs I see at my day job. The grey tones, which have yellowed with age, speak to me about aging and death. I guess that is pretty morbid.
It has been awhile since my last post. I am working on myself, and it is difficult. Finding that change is necessary, I have enlisted the help of the Buddhas and Bodhisattvas. In addition to spending my free time meditating, I have made a Buddhist Prayer Flag, which I have hung in my office at my day job. It is all about not giving in to the same actions that have brought the same results for years. Dog-faced Buddha is working overtime, flapping her bony wings to get from here to there.
This is only my second woodcut. The first came out fairly well and is on exhibit from May 15-July 24 in the Members show at the Printmaking Council of New Jersey. That first woodcut, printed, of a Bodhisattva warrior, can also be found on my wiki: http://elisedod.pbwiki.com/Art
I wanted to add as little paint as possible to this image. I think I achieved the balance I was after; just the right amount of canvas left white and the right amount of paint applied to keep the imagery fresh. In seeing it again, I am most pleased with the hand on the right. It conveys the stains on one’s hands, even when one tries to be good. It seems to be throbbing in pain, which is a good thing for this painting.