A couple of days ago Francesco came to the studio to visit prior to his return to New York. I really enjoyed spending time with him, with his easy calm temper and excellent cooking and I hope to see him again soon. I’m closely guarding two of his paintings for an exhibit at the local Hillcrest Center, which I’ll also be participating in with the As the Crow Flies installation.
Meanwhile, in the Kwan Fong gallery the Multimedia show has been taken down and we are preparing for the exhibit of our Senior Art majors work, the culmination of their Bachelors degrees at the University. The opening is on Friday evening at 7.00pm.
I’ve been looking at rose bushes and figuring out how they would hang over the wall in the Sun painting. This afternoon I hope to get started on laying down the background for them.
A friend pointed me in the direction of an interesting story on the work of Mr. Robert C. Christian and the guidestones in this article. The stones have been vandalized this week, which is a pity, reminding me of the Taliban’s fundamentalist efforts to eradicate all trace of any religion other than theirs from Afghanistan. No tolerance!
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I worked on the hermit in Bombers, painting a velatura skin and emphasizing the shadows between the rocks in the lake bed area. I think he’s wearing blue jeans, as many of my figures seem to be doing these days. Denim is a breeze to render on a well drawn en grisaille, because beneath a blue glaze the grey and white is so completely right for the bleached out fade of an old pair of jeans. I get a lot of pleasure from painting these simple things.
Why should we be ruled by the movement of planets? Astrology is bunk, right? But when I consider the profound effects of three of the planets upon all of us, I find myself prepared to have an open mind about the practice. The rotation of the earth clearly orders the seasons and powerfully affects our lives; the sun keeps us alive by providing heat, growing crops and governs the day and night; the movements of the moon are powerful enough to move oceans. We can witness the procession of the zodiac before us in the sky, so the motion of the heavens is both powerful and present.
The alchemists were convinced that the microcosmic life of man ran in conjunction with the motions of the heavens and sought out the laws of the universe in order to better understand the mind of God. In the slow dance of the planets, they saw that the laws of physics govern not only the cosmos, but the lives of men.
The reason I mentioned that my wife’s a Scorpio and I’m a Virgo is that I think the falling figure will be a virginal girl falling upward toward the Scorpio constellation.
This one’s a mixture of dream and reality.
In alchemy Virgo is said to correspond with Distillation and with the tarot card the Hermit.
Scorpio corresponds with Separation and with the tarot card Death. The Death card in tarot doesn’t necessarily mean death, it’s more a symbol of transformation from one state of being to another. It’s an initiatory death in that the old self dies, but the new self emerges from that passing.