A Magnificent day here in NW CT. Sunny, warm w/out being hot, blue skies, no clouds, barely a breeze…. All on my street is peaceful. There have been very few people out this morning on foot or in cars. There hasn’t been much sound of any kind except the mundane bird song, occasional car passing, brook gently babbling…. I feel I can almost hear the sun hitting the faces of the houses and the shadows that are being cast.
I went outside earlier to check my gardens. I did a little watering and a little weeding before I came back inside with the thought of getting my camera and going back outside to take some photos of the ripening tomatoes and try to capture some of the essence that gave me a sense of joy as I worked. As often happens, when I came back inside I got side-tracked with other things to do and have yet to go back out with the camera. I decided somewhere that I’d go back out later when the sun was a little higher.
And pick the one ripe tomato for my lunch.
I’ve spent the past hour at the table in my studio listening to the Dala Lama chanting and looking at the paintings that are hanging on 3 walls in front of me and w/in my vision. I’ve been working at changing the thoughts that make my heart sink to thoughts that make my heart leap with anticipation and Possibility. Sometimes I think of myself as the “little old ant, trying to move a rubber tree plant” and a sense of being overwhelmed and I absolutely, positively CAN’T. There’s just too much – and too little time, and too much else to do. That’s when I try to turn my mind to High Hopes and “Woops, there goes another Rubber Tree Plant….”
After some thought and meditation, I worked for awhile on the painting I left on my easel a few days ago when I had to take time away from the studio for my regular dayjobs. I worked much white paint into areas on the painting that needed to be lighter. As I worked I experienced a sense of heightened change in the image, a sense of what I feel Cezanne referred to as ‘The Sensation.’
“This is what one must achieve. If I reach too high or too low, everything is a mess. There must not be a single loose strand, a single gap through which the tension, the light, the truth can escape. I have all the parts of my canvas under control simultaneously. If things are tending to diverge, I use my instincts and beliefs to bring them back together again… Everything that we see disperses, fades away. Nature is always the same, even though its visible manifestations eventually cease to exist. Our art must shock nature into permanence, together with all the components and manifestations of change. Art must make nature eternal in our imagination. What lies behind nature? Nothing perhaps. Perhaps everything. Everything, you understand. So I close the errant hand. I take the tones of colour I see to my right and my left, here, there, everywhere, and I fix these gradations, I bring them together… They form lines, and become objects, rocks, trees, without my thinking about it. They acquire volume, they have an effect. When these masses and weights on my canvas correspond to the planes and spots which I see in my mind and which we see with our eyes, then my canvas closes its fingers. It does not waver. It does not reach too high or too low. It is true, it is full…” cited in Cezanne by Ulrike Becks-Malorny, Taschen 2001
It was this ‘sensation’ that inspired the paintings in this series and that search and desire for sensation that is keeping the series alive and in Process. It is the sensation and the images that I want to line my cave walls telling about being alive, this is where this human has been, what this human has seen and felt.