One fish comes to the surface to greet the spectator. The others swim in every direction. Fish bump into each other. Koi swimming in a pool reflects a world of energy and will. These koi also offer me as artist an excuse to indulge painting for painting’s sake. Bright colors are placed against each other in a compact square.
This small sketch is a preparatory drawing for a small painting. Sometimes a painting will have a lot of images “behind” it, drawings that the public doesn’t see. Such is the case with the paintings you find in the museums, and I decided that these great artists I admire had important reasons why they needed this richer contact with their subject that comes from many repetitions. Then I began doing more study and practice for my own paintings. “Il faut refaire la meme chose dix fois, cent fois,” said Edgar Degas: “you must redo the same subject ten times, a hundred times.”
Now the distinction between studies and paintings has blurred, and both kinds of work seem equally significant to me, each in their own way. While this drawing was made to work out the ideas of a painting, it has enough presence to stand on its own as well.
[Top of the post: Drawing of Koi, by Aletha Kuschan, Caran d’ache crayons]