How happy I am to be able to share my Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma heritage with my friends and family. I put my tree up today and I especially enjoy placing the ornaments from my tribe on the tree. Especially poignant were the ones with notes from Chief Gregory Pyle who recently passed. Thank you Chief Gary Batton for continuing this tradition. Back to my brushes.
"Clay can be dirt in the wrong hands, but clay can be art in the right hands." - Lupita Nyong'o
I'm honored to share that my painting The Patterns of Home has been purchased by the Department of Arkansas Heritage for the Arkansas Arts Council's Small Works on Paper permanent collection. This painting is in the Arkansas Arts Council's 2019 Small Works on Paper touring exhibit which is currently displayed at the University of Arkansas Hope-Texarkana campus until the end of November. I rarely paint landscapes, so I am enchanted that this piece, so indicative of our area, has been chosen for inclusion in the permanent collection. Back to my brushes.
"Treat a work of art like a prince. Let it speak to you first." - Arthur Schopenhauer
I'm pleased to share that my painting The Tools of Line and Color has been chosen for the 2020 exchange exhibition Visions Adjoin. For the first time in nearly fifty years, the National Watercolor Society and the Canadian Society of Painters in Watercolour will host a joint exhibition of 60 paintings (30 juried from each society's Signature or Elected Members) to be displayed at the NWS Gallery, San Pedro, California and the Helson Gallery, Halton Hills, Ontario. "The objective of this exhibition/exchange opportunity is to share the common bond of a passion for watercolor, that both societies promote. The cultural influences each country explores independently as well as similarities that the medium of watercolor offers will connect our two countries in this international display." I am so delighted to be a part of this exhibit, my thanks to the judges. Back to my brushes.
"A mind that is stretched by a new experience can never go back to its old dimensions." - Oliver Wendell Holmes
My Uncle passed last week and I have spent some time recalling memories of our time together over the years. He was an educated man, graduating from the University of Oklahoma. He served in the USAF until his retirement. These are but two of his accomplishments but not what comes to my mind when I think of him. Instead I recall his humor, his laugh, his forthrightness and his perseverance. I recall he introduced me to fishing and gave me my first tackle box. (I'm afraid it was destined for paint tubes instead). But the vision that comes to my mind is much stronger than the others because it is the routine that becomes most precious in our memory. And so my thoughts go to the changing of day to night, wakefulness to rest. He has finished his meal and retreated to his chair to read and partake of his pipe. The lamp is on beside him, an incandescent glow over his right shoulder as he chooses one of the pipes from the round stand on the table. He lights his pipe and the smell permeates the room. A hint of woods and something sweet...cherry maybe? The smoke hovers in the air around him like a gossamer cloud. He reads. The print from the paper reflects off his glasses and the world is revealed. Forever in my memory, godspeed Uncle Al. Back to my brushes.
"What better occupation, really, than to spend the evening at the fireside with a book, with the wind beating on the windows and the lamp burning bright." - Gustave Flaubert
I am pleased to share that my painting titled Entwined has received the award for Still/Life Floral category at the ANA Celebration of Art Exhibition. My thanks to the judge Dean Mitchell. If you are in the area be sure and visit the Town Center in Fayetteville, Arkansas to see all the wonderful work in this exhibit. Back to my brushes.
"Love many things, for therein lies the true strength, and whosoever loves much performs much, and can accomplish much, and what is done in love is done well." - Vincent Van Gogh
So a quick post today to recommend the book I just finished. It had it all, mystery, detective work, art, history, travel...everything. The book is The Vanishing Velazquez by Laura Cumming, published in 2016. If you are interested in the same things I am, you will enjoy it. Yes, intrigue equals happiness and assumptions will always get you into trouble. Back to my brushes.
"Art is a harmony parallel with nature." - Paul Cezanne
This deep dive into a subject has been a real revelation to me. I came to a point last year where I thought I was done with it, but did a rather abrupt about face when I considered a different vantage point, and so began a journey of discovery. If you have read my blog you know I love a museum crawl. I love "the timeline" and I always discover something new even if greeting an old friend. But how was it relevant personally? I thought this consideration could be...interesting. Let's be clear, I'm not talking about deconstructing a painting. I can do that with the best of them. No, I'm talking about essentials. So this journey started last year and I just completed the fourth painting. As I start the fifth I find I a truer sense of understanding and have experienced tangible personal growth as a result. The most important thing I discovered was that I can tackle anything with but one subject. So, to the ether, I send thanks to those who have held my hand. Back to my brushes.
"Color is the keyboard, the eyes are the hammers, the soul is the piano with many strings." - Wassily Kandinsky
I'll be painting today but just wanted to recall my most recent reading list. Perhaps you can find something you would be interested in. So let's start with one of my fave writers Christopher Moore. I started Noir because, frankly, I was in the mood for Moore. I can, as usual, recommend. If you like Humphrey Bogart movies, you'll be entertained by this book. I can recommend two books by Susan Vreeland, the first being Lisette's List and the second Luncheon at the Boating Party. Both are novels, one based on the famous painting and the other uses WWII as the background of art discovery. I enjoyed them both. I can recommend The Last One by Brian King. This book is a mystery about the last painting by Vincent Van Gogh - and I do love a mystery. The Shallows is another murder mystery by Matt Goldman. I have fallen for this series hard and as soon as a new book in the series is released, I pick it up. The Library of Lost and Found by Phaedra Patrick was enjoyable, but I got interrupted too many times and will probably re-read. Highly recommend Clear Seeing Place by Brian Rutenburg. Not only was it interesting it made me laugh too. But I have saved a special one for the end. This article in the New Yorker magazine by Malcolm Gladwell from 2008 is a must read in my opinion. It is titled Late Bloomers: Why do we equate genius with precocity? Here is the link . So just read it. Back to my brushes.
"Art is the stored honey of the human soul, gathered on wings of misery and travail." Theodor Dreiser
It appears I went to bed last night on the eve of Independence Day only to wake up this morning on May Day, 1965, in some alternate universe. In response, I share an image of my painting titled Disconnected. Back to my brushes.
"Freedom in art, freedom in society, this is the double goal towards which all consistent and logical minds must strive." - Victor Hugo
There is just something, a regenerative power, that I derive when I cross the Mississippi and head back home again. Is it the flat delta or just the sign? Is it just knowing that I am closer to my kin or that I can avoid the car for awhile? The opportunity to rest in my own bed perhaps? Maybe just the simple daily routine beckons me back? The opportunity to gather my thoughts and put it in a painting? Well, whatever the reason I can say the height of the Mississippi River made me forget all those things and just stare in amazement. WOW the river was high! And the Arkansas River has seen record flooding. And my family have seen their rivers rise and flood as well. And since we have returned home it has done nothing but rain, rain, rain. Depressing. Back to my brushes.
"Criticism, like rain, should be gentle enough to nourish a man's growth without destroying his roots." - Frank A. Clark