Saturday, October 14, 2006

art imitates life

Domesticated 12" x 12"

Sometimes paintings paint themselves. I had this vague idea that I wanted to do a mixed media piece loosely based on the theme of domesticity, in a collage style similar to this one now owned by kj, for an upcoming Christmas exhibition of small pieces at Main Street Gallery, so I collected some collage elements and went for it. About eight hours later this emerged. Where did it come from? I didn't want to paint this painting, an old-fashioned country kitchen-style work. Where was I when this work was inventing itself and what do I do now? Hell's bells -- people will think that it was me who painted this.

Next stop: looking for the deeper meaning. I mean, if you can't find metaphors for life in art, then what the hell are art critics and philosophers for? (Then again, if you can find metaphors for life in art, then what are art critics and philosophers for?) In this case it's not the painting itself that intrigues me but the fact that I seemed to check out while painting it. Totally. It's like I had no control over the outcome.

Whooaah, man -- that's it! Just like life. (Pass the doobie.) I've had the kind of week where I have realized that I have no control over about 99% of what happens around me. Old dogs will insist on getting so frail that they can't stand up on their own any more, kids will suddenly spectacularly fail subjects they once aced, elderly fathers will continue regressing until they've re-entered the womb, friends will pick up seemingly en masse and move away, feet will develop plantar fasciitis if you continue running after symptoms surface, I will wake up at 4:00 every morning whether it's good for me or not, and paintings will paint themselves -- apparently while I'm off at the dentist.


Blogger Homo Escapeons said...

ooch! Sounds like you have a lot on your palette!
Keep the therapeutic art going..your subconscience is working overtime and needs to get out.
Chin up...your karmic boomerang is going to bring you some good stuff on the way back...
Pass the doobie..don't bogart that joint.

14/10/06 10:10 a.m.  
Blogger Caroline said...

Looks like you managed to produce a great pic despite all that went on - or was it because of it?

I'm going through a rather doubting in freewill period at the moment... but I still think its better to operate as though there is freewill.

So what does your painting say to you?

14/10/06 11:37 a.m.  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I enjoyed reading your entry today Andrea ! Lifes scary isn't it, no wonder you have panic attacks at 4am.I'm trying to talk myself out of being nervous during the opening of my solo exhibition this evening but, why bother, what ever happens will happen whether I want it to or not.I just hope the happening is lots of sales.:) By the way, great painting that you did or didn't do.As always !

14/10/06 11:45 a.m.  
Blogger Within Without said...


The piece is full of colour, which is your style from my untrained eye's perspective.

Is that a rugby football in the lower right main quadrant?

There's a wedding band there, I think, bright lovely foodstuffs that I assume are plentiful in your home...

Isn't this domesticity?

But you say you vacated the mental and creative premises and some other pseudo Andrea painted it.

A lot was going on, you said you needed to paint...maybe the creative karma wasn't the same as you're used to, you didn't feel as grounded as you usually do in a familiar way that preps you for painting.

What objects or other items or schemes might you have expected now, in hindsight, that you would painted?

It's beautiful, I think.


14/10/06 3:44 p.m.  
Blogger carla said...

Intriguing! I love when that sort of automatic creativity occurs, though. It's like a dream...things just come out from their dark recesses and leave you wondering. I really like this mix of traditional and abstarcted subjects arranged in the color blocks. The composition is really eye moves around and feels happy everywhere it lands. This looks great hanging on the wall! It's certainly a departure, but it's quite lovely! Sorry for all your troubles. I am convinced that there's something amiss in the seems like everyone I've talked to (myself included...yes, I talk to myself) has had troubles galore lately. I'm hoping it will all pass over like a storm and leave us refreshed. As for waking up at 4:00 a.m....when else will you have some peace and quiet?

14/10/06 4:37 p.m.  
Blogger andrea said...

HE: "A lot on yoiur palette..." hahahahaha As for the subconscious artist, who knew she was Suzy Homemaker?

Caroline: My painting says: "This is a one-off, sister. Move on."

Sheri: I know that opening reception feeling. I paint so I don't have to talk to people so what's with the meet and greet anyway? :)

WW: You're thinking again. God, that's attractive in a man. :) That football is actually a loaf of bread a la hobo language. I do not ask questions, I am merely a vessel, a channel, an object without free will (though Caroline thinks otherwise). And thanks.

Carla: Your observations are, as usual, inspired. Can you dredge up some inspiration now and suggest what I should do with this? Not sure it's right for the gallery now so must re-think and get back to work... As for troubles, I figure if I pretend they're not there they'll just go away. Meanwhile, I'll play Birdland (Sarah Vaughan's version) over and over obsessively.

14/10/06 4:44 p.m.  
Blogger Brian the Mennonite said...

Because this is a one-of, it makes me, all the more, want to buy it,as, when you are devilishly famous, it will be worth more than all the others, which are true to your, the real Andrea, style.
Am I stuttering?
As for your third paragraph, which, I feel, is the main paragraph of this're absolutely right...shit...sorry, but this will not be the norm... that must be SO hard to watch...why do they do it all at the same time?...damn heel spurs...move away just like all your friends, to a new time zone (like Manitoba), where 4:00am will be closer to a sane waking hour...stay away from dentists.

14/10/06 7:06 p.m.  
Blogger L'Oiseau said...

Hi Andrea. I love this. Despite your current frustrations this painting seems a very positive interpretation of 'old world' traditions and values today. And your last paragraph's concerns tell me that there is a timeless tradition of trying to be a mother, daughter, wife, friend, artist. Just think of the number of people who have woken up at 4am over the centuries because x is on their mind...

15/10/06 1:59 a.m.  
Blogger Collaging-Kristen said...

I absolutely adore the colors especially the square with the red background, white pitcher of hydrangeas and wood basket.

I've read a lot your blog (I especially liked the hobo entry)....welp, I'm officially addicted to it :))

15/10/06 5:21 a.m.  
Blogger Within Without said...


Looks like my thinking got me into some trouble.

Sorry bout "fumbling" and mistaking the loaf of bread for a football.


15/10/06 9:44 a.m.  
Blogger Jana Bouc said...

Maybe you painted the painting and someone else wrote the blog posting while you were at the dentist? Sorry to hear about your old dog and dad and your 4 am wakings. I've been there, and it's not an easy time. On the other hand, paintings that paint themselves might be an easy way to produce for a show--very Fantasia-esque (if you've seen that movie with the broomsticks carrying water).

15/10/06 10:45 a.m.  
Blogger andrea said...

Brian: The clue that it's getting better is that I can actually blog about it now ... so we're on the road to normal again -- normal being like your household of course (controlled chaos?).

Oiseau: Old-world, timeless traditions -- maybe my subconscious was taking me back to an earlier incarnation of myself -- kind of like picking up a wireless signal from your kids' school on your laptop while waiting in the parking lot. (Who, me?)

C-K: Thanks for the visits -- and back atcha.

WW: That's OK -- the long pass is overrated anyway. Some of us prefer the fumble. And would you like some butter on your pigskin?

Jana: I think maybe some evil physicist or accountant or something tied me up in the attic then ran down to the basement to paint this while the broomsticks were off at the dentist. (Might as well add a little Dali to Disney.)

15/10/06 10:58 a.m.  

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