If the irises in the garbage are beautiful, then beauty itself is contingent

2021.07.06

Most of this week was spent recovering from some illness, maybe Covid. I have spent only a few hours photographing and uploading these archive entries this week. All of these works occurred over the past few weeks.  I am noticing a more impasto texture to the paintings.  It appears that I am interested in the portrait.  

I have had the feeling of retreat, as if I want to avoid my practice. And curiously, there is also a lot of energy in the acceptance that occurs when I publish works to the site, as if I am saying, “OK, here is where I am right now,” as an artist. That feels truthful, and therefore nourishing.  I see a lot of technical places to be improved, those insights feel like sharp little daggers, as most of the time I am not sure how to improve the works.  The particular quality of the ugliness of Ice Cream II was a sort of pleasant strange surprise. It felt worth keeping as a result. 

I am going to work on a landscape and McConnell this coming week. I feel as if I am making unconsciously, and maybe that should be good enough for a moment.  One thing that occurs to me as I reflect on these latest works, I believe I need to slow down and develop the forms more meticulously.  I’d like to include some more color into my practice, which has been really challenging me lately.  I am having difficulty discovering subtle realistic color harmonies that hold some aesthetic quality.  

I am excited to track my practice here.  The site makes me want to improve my work. 

“It is not exactly the face that constitutes the wall of the signifier or the hole of subjectivity. The face, at least the concrete face, vaguely begins to take shape on the white wall. It vaguely begins to appear in the black hole. In film, the close-up of the face can be said to have two poles: make the face reflect light or, on the contrary, emphasize its shadows to the point of engulfing it “in pitiless darkness.”1 A psychologist once said that the face is a visual percept that crystallizes out of “different varieties of vague luminosity without form or dimension.” A suggestive whiteness, a hole that captures, a face. According to this account, the dimensionless black hole and formless white wall are already there to begin with. And there are already a number of possible combinations in the system: either black holes distribute themselves on the white wall, or the white wall unravels and moves toward a black hole combining all black holes, hurtling them together or making them “crest.” Sometimes faces appear on the wall, with their holes; sometimes they appear in the hole, with their linearized, rolled-up wall. A horror story, the face is a horror story. ” (p. 189)

Bibliography

Delueze & Guattari. “Year Zero: Faciality” in A Thousand Plateaus. (Minneapolis, MN, University of Minnesota Press, 1987)