Sometimes things happen when you have been working for a long time on one picture and then you decide for a short break to just try out something else on another quite quickly. And sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t, but on those occasions where something does happen, it is quite exciting, even if you are not quite sure about it straight away. That is what happened with this picture. And I think that it maybe could not have come about without having to work longer on another one. Maybe it can, and one can keep perfecting the quick technique, but then the technique becomes too ‘thingified’ in its gesture as opposed to keeping the element that still has a searching quality, so I think I have to do the work in other ones in order to allow for these brief moments now and again that something can happen in a more ‘effortless’ yet still searching way (like day dream on the edges of thought).
By work I mean challenging myself to keep putting paint down even as I think that perhaps something could stop and be resolved, but then realising one needs to accept the challenge that one can resolve it again at a different level (even if there are many occasions where one fails). The ones which take longer and involve work I find one is faced with the same moment of then deciding when to stop (which of course is a cliché in painting, but nevertheless in my experience may be true).
One can too easily make a virtue out of failures and I too am quite susceptible to this. One has to remain vigilant to this tendency. This is true for realms other than art as well, I think. We might justifiably ask if the striving for art which in a way is striving for a freedom of exploration still exists today. I am conscious that my artwork may be failing to ask this question. But perhaps this writing serves to remind me of that.
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