Some time has passed since I last came here. The ending of Winter and beginning of Spring offered many adventures, one being a trip to Tulsa, Ok for a show in late February and several trips to Colorado Springs in March and April to touch base with family and gather more inspiration. It is now the second day of the official beginning of Summer and my Fall solo show preparations are underway.
As always, every year I try to extend the previous boundaries, try new subjects, and experiment with new techniques. For last year's show, "Adagio for Grasslands" broke new ground in how I painted grasses over of the years. I wanted to bring them closer than ever before as if standing right in it all, with the horizon only a small portion above. For me, the tall grass of the prairies is like Mount Pedernal was to Okeeffe or Sainte Victoire was to Cezanne. They move me again and again with deep feelings and I am continually drawn to paint them. It's a mystery; after all, they are a just grasses, but it's all in the context: the wind, the sky, the expanse of the prairie, the stillness, the clouds and shadows floating by. What I see and feel in all this interplay is what drives my to bring it onto canvas.
This year, trees have begun to play a significant part. I am also bringing them closer in, some quite close like the grasses in "Adagio". Visually, trees are immensely powerful to me also. Though different from grasses, the branches travel in a myriad of directions holding leaves that produce an infinite number of shapes and then there are the fascinating openings showing bits and pieces of sky or mountain. Trees are informal, growing towards optimal balance unless wind or other forces of nature want to intervene. There is also no striving or overworking built into their DNA. They just are and this is what holds much power for me.
So in many ways, these directions are towards a deeper immersion into the land, seeing infinity not so much in literal space, but in a single patch of grass or tree.
“To see a World in a Grain of Sand
And a Heaven in a Wild Flower,