The Whole Story

I want to tell the whole story of my art, of your art, of anybody’s art. Whatever I learned, I got there by a particular path.  It wasn’t always a brilliant success.  I’ve made many bad drawings along the way.  (What about you?)  Yet sometimes it happens also to be true that a drawing had a specific purpose, humble though it might have been, that formed a necessary bridge from here to there.

I find old notebooks stashed away that hold strange and mysterious pictures. Sometimes I cannot identify what it was I drew.   Cannot tell up from down.  Don’t know what purpose they served, what thing I sought.  They are things that just float.  Fragments of fragments, unhinged from any goal.

Yet they have a weird sort of charm (for me at least).  They are the refrigerator pictures of my artistic childhood.  I was an adult in making them, but I was only taking baby steps toward whatever destination I had set for myself.  They are visual mumblings.

Some of them, that is.  This one is a brilliant success.

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Taking water apart

A kind of drawing of the water – as of that pool at night —  in tones — abstract but describing the surface of the water in its forms.  Da Vinci did this.  What did he say about such drawing?

But Bonnard is the one who teaches how to simplify a complex thing and the value of observing the details even without a context.  To understand the thing, to fix it in memory, to savor and live with it.  A part that adumbrates the whole.  Or that longs for it