November 20, 2013

Meaning in Clouds of Paint

There is something very satisfying about painting while the parts for other art works are being processed. It makes creative life feel like the cottage industry it used to be when I was a professional artist. Today as parts for mixed media works are cooking in the kiln I am doing small paintings for my miniature art exhibition. I am completing them as stream of consciousness art works, without a set plan or design. For some, I am using bits and pieces of collage material, others are just paint. It helps to execute these on a surface that is already painted with a textured surface, the swirls and scratches in the paint holding the beginnings of images.

I recall reading that Michelangelo used to envision images in the cracks of his ceiling or in the patterns of wood grain in doorways. There must be something in the human consciousness that seeks meaning in forms like that - a need to connect the dots and make a visual language out of otherwise senseless marks. That is why it feels right and peaceful to see forms in the clouds.

In my latest work, I am making the clouds in which to tease out a meaning. The one posted here I call “Rooms in a Stream of Consciousness.” It is so named for the collage pieces embedded in the composition that are prints from stone seals that say alternatively “a small room” or “One’s own room.” I have tucked these in between the swirling forms to which I have added structure and color to create a visual narrative.

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