Well, this is gonna be a long one because it has been a very busy month to say the least. Aside from relocating five weeks ago to Austin and other intensities, I have been painting like a madwoman...creating pieces for group exhibitions at Besharat Gallery in Atlanta and Laura Rathe Fine Art in Houston, and Decade, a solo exhibition at Jean-Marc Fray in Austin, I have now begun four large commissioned projects. Here goes...
DECADE @ JEAN-MARC FRAY:
Here are some pics of the work and the opening reception, which took place Thursday evening. I always love working with the Frays and gallery manager Lauren Stewart-Ebert. They are upbeat and work hard, but also laid back and tons of fun!
Birgit and I (posing next to the gorgeous flower arrangement from my girlfriends in Louisiana, which of course made me cry...there is nothing like great girlfriends...and I sure do miss mine!). Later we went on to Justine's to celebrate Birgit's first day as a U.S. citizen...yay! Congrats, Birgit!
The show consists of 10 paintings, one for each year, or one for each significant event in my life over the past decade. Here they are in the order that makes most sense to me-- a chronological order of what they represent to me. I do not normally think this way or explain the spider webs in my head, but this time it's different.
Bloom X: 72" x 48" oil, oil crayon, graphite, and charcoal on canvas.
I began the Bloom series several months ago. This really is the tenth painting in the series. Serendipity...love it. The forms are bold and intense, but soft, somewhat floral or petal-like. For me this series evokes feminity. This piece is about sensual and sexual energy.
Pods XXXVII: 36" x 36" oil, oil crayon, and charcoal on panel
I started the Pods series a couple of years ago. This panel is one I actually made in the year 2000, and I painted on top of it in 2010...a true decade! I told you I am always a sucker for serendipity. Both Pods paintings are for my babies. This one is for my son Julian.
Wetlands IV: 56" x 52" ink, oil, and charcoal on canvas
Wetlands is a series of paintings that for some reason or another remind me of Louisiana. In this piece, the flattened oval shapes remind me of the lily pads that float on top of the jet black water, and the drips speak of water and humidity. This piece is an acknowledgement and thank you to the place where I came from, returned to, and left again.
My Deep Earth: 48" x 48" oil, collage, ink, oil crayon and charcoal on canvas
This painting is about the confrontation of death. A universal experience , but singular and solitary. An homage to those I have loved and lost.
Water in Motion: 48" x 60" ink, oil, oil crayon, and graphite on canvas
The force of life...it carries us, it moves around us. Reminds me of the way the ocean takes a ship or a body around wherever and however it wants to. Sometimes you can navigate it, and sometimes it navigates you. Mother Ocean.
Pods XXXVII: 60" x 48" ink, oil, oil crayon, and charcoal on canvas
This painting is for my son Jackson.
Hot Free World: 38" x 72" oil and charcoal on canvas
I posted this before. I painted it a couple of months ago, one of the last pieces I did in Louisiana. It celebrates hope and possibility, without which, life is meaningless. Or at least boring as hell.
Adieu (The Separation of Light and Shadow): 48" x 36" ink, oil, oil crayon, and graphite on canvas
This painting is about the light and energy that is released when something whole is divided.
White Dove: 48" x 36" ink, oil, oil crayon, and charcoal on canvas.
Decade: 56" x 48" oil, oil crayon, charcoal, and graphite on canvas
The sum of it all. Cheers!
My friend Mia, owner of Metropolitan Gallery, and I...after party! A tall photographer with a big, super bright camera shot this pic. Right after a quick dance to an MJ song. I don't know why I am sitting on her lap.
After the after party...go home, girls! The end. Thank God!
LAURA RATHE 10TH ANNIVERSARY SHOW & CELEBRATION!
And here are some pics from the opening reception last Saturday in Houston. I got to meet some wonderful people. One of my favorite conversations was with Lawrence, a very sweet German man and retired engineer, whose wife was an artist and studied at Glassell in Houston under Texas artist Charles Schorre, who also happens to be my dear friends, Margaret and Sandra's, grandfather. He told me all kinds of stories about his wife's artwork, their life together, and her time with Charles. He was lovely, and I wish I had taken his picture!
I also loved meeting Marissa Starr, a very talented, sweet, and industrious (!) painter from San Antonio who also shows at the gallery. We have talked on the phone a bit and emailed for months, but it's always much better to meet in person. See images of her beautiful work here.
Laura and I at the opening reception for her 10th Anniversary Exhibition featuring a long list of amazing artists. It was a wonderful evening. Congratulations to you, Laura!!!
I should mention what a beautiful space the gallery is, both inside and out. Modern, industrial, but warm. And large!
Loved these horse charcoal pieces of Ashley Collins. Hard to see in these photos because the room was packed, but you can likely find images on the gallery site. Also, I am not an awesome photographer.
Again, not an awesome photographer, but still. A good view of the gallery space.
Abstract expressionist painter Tony Maygar talking about Sargent's book on seascapes. Aside from being a damn fine painter, he is quite a storyteller. I loved hearing all about the time he spent in the 1960's working, showing, and hanging out with all the mid-century greats--Jasper Johns, Robert Rauschenberg, Robert Motherwell, and my hero Helen Frankenthaler. He was telling me about how they used to hang out at Cedar Street bar in the East Village. I had always heard that when I was studying at Parsons. We went there all the time, too, so I tried to understand what it was like back then. And now I kind of do.
Believe me, I could NOT be more grateful and excited about all that has been going on, but I need a much deserved vacation (in a big way). I think I will start with a nice dose of Benadryl and my pillow. And movies. I want to see some movies. I would like to reread Love in the Time of Cholera and God of Small Things, both of which are dusty from sitting on my nightstand for about a month...preferably in a bubble bath or poolside. Speaking of dust, I would also like to vacuum, and clean out my boys' nightmare of a closet, which looks like a nuclear bomb exploded at a toy factory. And I want to make a gigantic pot of chicken tortilla soup, which I have to say is killer. Is that okay to brag on my soup? Hope so. And a big moussaka, too...also killer. If I actually get around to doing half of those things, I will be satisfied. Then I want to go somewhere. Somewhere far away that I have never been before. We shall see.