Sunday, January 20, 2008

Trying to suffer a sea-change in my soul

Red Roof, Taos, New Mexico
Oil on Masonite

I want to start a blog devoted to my quest for the perfect small painting. I'm using the word perfection wryly, since aiming for perfection has not always been beneficial for my work all these years. My usual habit is to spend two- or even three months- on one painting, trying to create an image without flaws. I've begun to realize that painting is not about the absence of flaws- painting is about being fully awake, and fully aware of a larger world outside yourself. At best it is an act of spiritual renewal.

By making a commitment to producing several small paintings each week rather than each year, I am hoping to bring about a sea-change in my soul. I want to find perfection in the act of painting itself, in the soulful awakening that happens when a new subject is seized and explored. If some of my small pieces turn out to be pretty darn good, that will be because I've been able to forget myself, and my usual plans for being in charge of just how good my work will be.

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