Thursday, November 16, 2017

Murakami vs Rothko at the MFA in Boston - is art meant to make you smile or cry?

There're a few new shows at the MFA currently that are quite interesting to me in their contrast to each other. It's the very much talked about Takashi Murakami exhibit vs. the Mark Rothko exhibit, which virtually noone knows about.
I find Murakami to be so flat, impersonal and superficial. Yes, he found a symbol that is now our association with him, that of the flowers with a somewhat sickening grin. When you see it, or especially them in bunches you immediately recognize that they're his. But what does it do to you as a viewer except for this pleasure of recognition? It invokes nothing. It's just a pure Pop statement that just like Warhol before him, or Lichtenstein or Jess Koons - has no emotional connection to anything in anyone's psyche.
And then I step into the world of Mark Rothko and I begin to weep while on my second painting. I can't really explain what makes me weep. It could be the layers of his emotionally charged juxtapositions of color. It could be the simplicity or the perceived simplicity of his vast rectangles chosen for all his compositions. But I can feel his fingertips spreading the paint, touching it, making it visceral, psychological, incredibly emotional. I can feel him getting to the core of the message, to the core of my soul. I see this incredibly powerful effect of layers on my psyche as a viewer.
If one encloses simple relationships that are of utmost importance in a casing that does not distract from the message, that's when it starts to say what it's meant to say. Therefore, in a way these two exhibits are about the same elements. There's a symbol or idea that is key, and through its repetition, within the same casings you see it manifesting as a style.
This casing or composition should not distract from the main idea and that's where I think my problem lies. My landscapes are always seen as of utmost importance, and the play of colors as secondary. When in reality what I want is for the landscape to translate as a shadow of itself, and for the real quest of color harmonies to manifest as a primary goal.
But my main issue with the perception of these two exhibits still remains. Are we as people of today more attracted to the superficiality of Murakami than the depth of feeling of Rothko? Or do auction prices for the sales of Rothko pieces say otherwise? Or were there always two camps of viewers - those who want to look at art and smile, and those who are searching for something that would make them cry?

Friday, November 3, 2017

Could painting actually be better than sex?

Why melt? Because I want to enter the painting. I want the gates of ecstasy to open, to experience the merge of colors and textures, and to discover new possibilities.
First I build a city by looking at it, concentrating on its proper angles, turns, the scale of things. But then I want to dissolve into it, to feel like I'm one with it, existing on this particular day, while I'm staring at it, purposefully, with a mission to truly feel it. And just like Gaudi, I want to re-build it from the drips of paint, forming up like sand castles, directing my thoughts with these rays of hope, droplets of creation.
I've been waiting for this day for so long. It's because no matter how great sex is, with you giving into it completely, this is so much better. I peak time and again with each penetration of a new drip. It's an opening to absolute freedom.
But why not melt it all? It's about questioning boundaries, about giving you a glimpse of what could be vs. what is. It's about not being perfect but always striving for it. Perhaps I'm not strong enough to destroy it, as it pains me when my subjects get completely dismembered: houses losing their windows, foundations merging into roofs. Maybe these are windows into my soul and it's tragic to me when they clogged up. Perhaps it's this struggle between the practical side of me and the crazy destroyer side? They're always at war it seems and my work is an attempt to have them co-exist.
Do you have two warring sides? How do they and where do they play out their struggles?
I do write quite a bit about the artmaking process, and you could be among the first to see my newest blogs if you sign on to my mailing list !
And this 36x48 oil and wax on canvas of Parisian rooftops is now finished, beaming with light and raw energy. It's available at $1,900. 
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