It’s a hard reality like compact snow in a clear air. White and static in my mind. I had shut the door and a thought to make a work of art. Something big man. A big canvas. I’d read books biographic with grainy photos and small prints in blunt terms about artists who all seem to start with a canvas. Picasso and Leonardo, Leonardo for sure, used to paint on walls, big walls. Somehow I never never got started because it always meant having a canvas or a wall free of bookshelves and drawers of things leaning up against.
I visited the Menil collection and of course what you find are beautifully arranged rooms with big big canvas on the walls or big painting on the wall itself. Cy Twombly must have thought – is it possible to make a bigger painting. Thankfully he must’ve had heaps of rooms and room available for that awesome collection. But in addition there was an exhibition of Arctic art, lots of small things made of ivory or bone, like Netsuke from Japan, but different and ancient.
Between white and color, and possibly black or even photo black, the color of shadows. How much a shadow can be art depends on the texture of the paint or the relief of the sculpture in the paint. What better paint to make great shadows than white. White is a beautiful shadow color.
Naturally for white to create shadows you need light off to the right and darkness on the other side of the door. This way even with the door closed, you know you can see a blinding shadow at any time the door is opened, such is the strength of the white.
So with a little imagination I converted my wall to a canvas. Not quite a Rothko. Not anything like a Twombly. Perhaps not even Picasso. It was easy really. Just a can of thick ivory arctic white. I started painting and having done the first coat it was just so great. Shadows of chaos crept into my mind and introduced the concept of the art. Chaos and the butterfly fluttering through my imagination and Voila !! Frightening the imagination and trapping that fluttering pattern into the shadows of the wall. The canvas of shadows the butterfly behind the door.
Photo: Tersiiska:Flickr, All rights reserved. Used with Permission.