Monday, April 30, 2007
Wednesday, April 25, 2007
Saturday, April 21, 2007
When I am with other artists we often talk among ourselves about who our favorite painters are. I also find it is a question that collectors and art lovers like to ask. It helps to understand what influences a painter. What really rows their boat, so to speak.
Sometimes collectors eyes will glaze over when I start talking about my, well, at least fifty favorite artists. (What do you mean you have never heard of Richard Diebenkorn?! He's only one of the most important American artists of the twentieth century!) So I have to watch myself. It's when I'm talking to other artists that it can get interesting. So many times, I will mention an artist that I find highly influential, and find that my artist friends haven't even heard of him or is not even interested in his work. It's strange.
I consider Paul Cezanne to be a great painter, one of the best. Yet when I mention him I usually get blank stares from fellow artists. Wasn't he the guy who started cubism and that modern art crap? I've never understood his work. No, he wasn't, and I'm sorry you never took the time to look at what he did. There is a emotional depth in his work that is lacking in a lot of work before and since his time. He was an artist who had a personal vision of the world in paint. He reinvented what he saw in paint. That's something that I think all artists should think about when they're working. What am I bringing to this painting that is my own? Of course, we are all influenced by other artists, but how can I reinvent nature in my paintings and make it personal?
Isn't that the reason to paint?