I was talking to someone today, and I was asked that infamous question: “What is your art about?” It’s a question I’ve gotten many times before, but somehow it’s always a tough one to answer no matter how much practice I have answering it. The expectation most of the time is that your answer will be relatively short and succinct, and yet cover and sum up everything you do at the same time; not an easy feat to master. This was a one-on-one conversation which is generally less intimidating and easier. The last time I got asked this question it was at a luncheon for new faculty where at the lunch table I was asked this question in front of all of these academics from different fields. So what was my answer today? “My work is about gesture in the human figure, exploring themes of social isolation and mental illness”.
The other idea that was floating in my mind today has been the possibility of “redoing” some past works from a body of work that I consider to be “finished”. I’ve never done this before, and I’m thinking now that it’s either a really great idea or a terrible one-there’s only one way to find out. As I was wrapping up “Wading”, towards the very end I started doing these monotypes which were layered and printed on interfacing and organza. I was excited about the visual possibilities, but I think at the time I was losing patience with the project overall and didn’t give these monotypes the kind of attention and focus that was necessary. I had just finished the three 10′ x 4′ drawings for the Davis Museum exhibition, and I think at the time I was a little burned out from that experience. Looking back on it, what I really was doing was just experimenting and playing around with the materials. I wasn’t actually finishing anything or bringing the level of attention and focus that I generally strive for. I’m thinking that now that I’ve gone through the experimentation process, it’s time for me to plan some new compositions and try to execute them with the kind of deliberate intent that was missing the first time through.