Saturday, 21 December 2013

The Colour of Water


(Yes, this is a fall picture, and it's not fall here anymore.)

Since the most recent mental logjam was removed, I've been thinking a lot about some of the art-related things I've been doing recently. At the simplest level, I'd been wondering where they fit in to what I've done in the past and where I think they might be leading me in the future.

Except there's so much more to them than that: it's one thing to try something new or revisit an old practice, but some of the emotions they have been provoking have been, well, not what I expected. That being said, it's meant that what I've been thinking about doing in the next while has shifted from being painted in just the six primary colours to millions of them.

Still night

The trigger for the bulk of this was a lovely class I took that was offered by the Esker Foundation with Brenda Draney, who was one of the artists featured in the Esker's most recent show: ostensibly, it was a watercolour session to explore memory, and I thought I was ready to deal with some of the ones I've been confronted with in the last few years.


Well, I guess that depends on how one defines ready. We were supposed to bring a photograph to work from: I brought my netbook and had chosen one of the pictures I had taken of where we had scattered the wee mannie. It's been years (plural) since I had hauled out my watercolour set, we were restricted to the small dobs of five colours squeezed onto our palettes, and I was very creaky (to be kind) with my technique.

Warm me up

The results -- and no, there will not be a picture here on the blog -- are pretty awful, by my standards: by the end of the afternoon, I completed three pieces, moving away from the rest of the class into the gallery for the last two. I planted myself in front of Wally Dion's I'm on the pursuit of happiness and I know: everything that shines ain't always going to be gold, which was my favourite piece in the show.

Coincidentally, one of the other evenings I had the opportunity to be part of was a lecture by David Mach, who was taken to the same show by Dick Averns, who wrote this wonderful account of David's discovery of the same piece. Loved seeing David's work, hearing his talk, and being invited to come along for a drink or two after, where I was able to chat more extensively with him. He does the most brilliant stuff that keeps turning over and over and over in my mind.

Tomorrow would have been our twelfth anniversary, and I'm heading up to the mountains to spend some quiet time without electronics for a well-deserved break.


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