Monday, October 26, 2009
It’s a Bird, It’s a Plane, It’s Nonobjective Art!
October Winds, 14 inches by 14 inches on birch panel. Mixed media with collage by Leslie Avon Miller.
Can we talk? So if you make non-objective or very abstracted art, or alternative art how do you talk to yourself about the innocent questions or not so innocent comments people make about your work? Generally I try to only show my work to people who “get” it on some level. I don’t feel a need to try and carry on a conversation in a language I can’t speak or understand, so why would I try to talk about nonobjective art with people who look for objective subjects? Well, maybe those people are my relatives, and they asked to see my work. Or maybe they are lovely friends who really are interested because the art is mine.
What have people seen in my work? How about a rabbit standing by a rock? Or a tree, or an alien? Or a magic fairy? Oh the list goes on. I have generally learned not to show my work to people who are kindly and mildly interested. But I did it again…comments were “What is it?” And “oh…”
It’s as if I write poems in a language long lost and not understood and the rhythm, cadence and tones are not enough to know beauty when you hear it. Or perhaps I write music with no words, and the melody and the relationships between notes are ethereal and ancient, but leave the listener wondering how she can sing a catchy phrase in the shower?
Today I can laugh about it, and just keep on painting. I keep on painting because I love layers, and partially obscured marks, and I love colors and shapes and movement and mystery. I paint because I love the language. And I paint because I must. My life feels like a good fit if I paint; I feel like I am being who I am if I create. I create because that’s who I am and because I am compelled to do so. And because life is short and life is beautiful.
That’s one of the many things about blogging I find so worth while. I see work of other artists and I am thrilled to see their vision. And I see work that has pushed even further than mine and it makes me want to go down the path and find out what is around the creative corner awaiting me. I read eager words on blogs written by members of the tribe. And even if the artist speaks French, or Portuguese, and I only speak English it doesn’t matter, because we speak the language of Art.
“The artist is not a different kind of person, but every person is a different kind of artist.” Eric Gill