An art class I visited in January 2003 put me in touch with a wax medium with which to seal paper, gloves to facilitate painting in oil using my fingers, and scratching tools. Earlier I had done a long series of drawings based on written words which were sometimes legible and sometimes not. With new tools and new drawing experiments I was ready to explore familiar territory in a new way. After many years of careful immediate observation and recording of things seen, I began using these new means to say something about things remembered and / or imagined.
In January 2006 a gift of an amaryllis was a source of great delight! Line drawings were done first. Following these were experiments in collage combined with writing and drawing. Cutting the shapes for the collages was an extension of the drawing process as I ‘drew’ with a single-edge razor blade. The bold lines and exuberance of amaryllis continue to inspire me annually.
As an interior designer and space planner I do many architectural drawings: floor plans, electrical plans, elevations and cabinet details. The precise lines of my architectural drawings provide the ground and take-off point for these drawings and paintings.
Listening to live music with eyes closed is a colorful experience for me. Some of these paintings come from very specific experiences:
I was first inspired to draw and paint about music following a December 2007 performance of Stravinsky’s “Rite of Spring” by the Kirov Orchestra. The final movement of this piece rises to a brilliant climax. In “Stravinsky”, diagonal lines reinforced with purple-black paint represent the rhythmical framework of the tympani and all other colors and gestures in the painting represent the full orchestra.
This represents very specifically one brass chord in “Afro-Cuban Jazz Suite” by Chico O’Farrill. The piece begins with a serene melody, here shown as the broad, stretched out curves at the bottom of the painting. This smooth sound is then pierced by a 5-trumpet and 4-trombone chord! This is shown as a vertical line with stacked up notes and vibrations careering off and out beyond the edges of the painting. The red-orange and yellow tones here reflect the bright resonance of brass.
This was inspired by a stride piano concert. At one point five pianists were playing all at once on two pianos. The painting / drawing is a general recollection of this wonderfully spirited and zany performance – the left hand part shown in the strong straight lines with zig-zags and the flighty, liquid right hand part shown in the lighter spiraling and fanning shapes
OTHER ABSTRACT PAINTINGS
Writing and drawing continue to be the under layer in most of these pieces.