Feb 212009

It wouldn’t take too much to finish this painting: a couple of hours, more refinements. The picture above is my second step and the picture below is my third. The next will be the last. I’m leaving tomorrow for Scottsdale, AZ and getting ready for the trip has to take first place. This is the first time I’ve attended a workshop so far away. I’ve ordered canvases and paints to be delivered to the Scottsdale Artist’s School in time for my class. I’m only bringing a palette, a turps jar, brushes and an apron in my suitcase. Hopefully I will come back inspired to try techniques foreign to me. That’s the way it is with workshops. You get to see how a better painter works. Implementing their method, one feels awkward and hampered. Their method, the precise brushes they use, are unfamiliar. One feels they are beginning all over again.

In addition to visiting galleries, I’m looking forward to hiking amidst pueblos. I’ve never spent any time in the Southwest, so I’m eager to explore. I will blog about my experiences when I get back.

Here’s a poem by Sylva Gaboudikan:


Even to say goodbye
even if it’s the last time
even reluctantly

even to hurt me again
even with the harsh acid
of sarcasm that stings

even with a new kind of pain
even fresh from the embrace
of another. Come back, just come.

Translated by Diana Der Hovanessian

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 Posted by at 10:12 pm
Feb 072009

With this 6×6 painting of a Pug puppy, I am continuing to build my Fine Art Pug Store.

At the end of this month, I am planning a trip to the Scottsdale School of Art, where I am going to have the opportunity to be instructed by Jeremy Lipking, one of American’s finest figure painters. This is so exciting for me. I was on a waiting list, but suddenly my number came up. I’ll be in Scottsdale from Feb 22 to 26, then I’m driving my rental car to Santa Fe, New Mexico until March 2. I’ve never been to Santa Fe before, but it is full of galleries, an art Mecca. I can’t wait. My close friend Andrea and I will be staying right on the Plaza, within easy walking distance. There is so much art to see there that apart from visiting major museums, I am probably going to be exposed to more good painting than I’ve ever been in my life. More on those plans later.

Also, two of my paintings are being featured in the WI Artsbuild Show at the Nohr Gallery on the University of WI Platteville campus. They are Angel of Music and German Chocolate Cake.

Here’s a poem by Chase Twichel:


Think of the present as a splitting atom
one-half weighted, out of kilter,
trailing its roots and trash,
and then the liquid glamour of the other,
swimming forward into foreign darkness
and the soft folds of space.
If fate is a chromosome,
a man and a woman might be
capable of genetic love.

No one leaves for heaven anymore,
that ill-lit, inhospitable
planet the color of eggshell,
sick with candles and flowers.
It empties itself of all things outlandish,
that is its purpose.
It crushes the fossil stars
for its fuel, clogging the sky
with their dessicated seed.

One human body, female, shudders.
Think of her pleasure as a tiny engine
or a unit of generated energy.
As something for nothing.
All over the earth the separate sparks
flash quietly, with exquisite frailty.
A body holding more of a charge
would come apart like the fractured atom,
and heaven, inverted, be used
as a bin for the debris.

When the music forces sadness on us,
the coincidence of joy unnerves us,
and the sexual lights flare up,
we drift into a universe of disasters
holding our slight, impractical instruments,
navigating by instinct,
as though that could save us.

You know what happens.
We survive straight through to the end.
We lie down together
on a hard, familiar bed
through each of us has been
already once or twice
a godsend to someone else.
Let love infect and reinfect us,
and endure in our blood
as a code of bright cells,
holy and incurable.

A Pug’s Eye View of the World, Oil on Canvas, 6×6, Sold

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