Old River Memory
2006, oil on panel, dimensions unknown
BEAUTY In the midst of uncertainty and fear. My daily post of an image of beauty to counter the currently overwhelming fear narrative.
OLD RIVER MEMORY
I painted this landscape 14 years ago during my transitional period of moving away from representational painting towards abstract and conceptual painting. I recall a work by Rembrandt, “Landscape With A Long Arched Bridge”, where the entire landscape was cast in the shadow of a dark and somewhat ominous sky, except for a lone tree, illuminated by a sliver of renegade sunlight that had escaped the cloaking. It was the drama of the piece that so appealed to me, as though the land was a theatrical stage and the tree was the leading actor, alone and in spotlight, performing a soliloquy. Painting is theatre. It’s a one act play, comprised of a single moment that feels like an eternity. That painting taught me how to lead the eye with light as though I was the director of my own play on canvas. And so I began noticing how light falls everywhere at all times and where the drama was in each moment. I can’t count the amount of times I’ve stopped to take in a scene like this. I’ve pulled over on highways at the most inopportune moments because I knew what I was seeing was fleeting and it was now or never. I’ve stood on my car to watch a sun set, risked death (yours and mine) to photograph skies while driving, just crazy stuff because I’m addicted to the drama of light playing of all the wonderful bodies of creation. I never thought I’d be grateful for a lethal vice, but for this divine affliction, I most certainly am.