As I was throwing out the last few items from our flood, things that had been hard to throw out at first, I reached out to toss a collection of Metropolitan Museum books from the 60's that I'd never looked at anyway. Chris stopped me and I spent the next hour taking out all the plates- hit after hit! Who knew?
In the studio, over the last month, I've struggled to start a new series, having finished off every panel I'd started over the last two years. I pored over the plates, unable to paint, and started noticing similarities between some loose starts I had and these classic compositions. The canvases are really small for me and as I draw in the bones of these compositions, I find them getting crowded and overlapping. I like it. It speaks of my modern life, trying to stuff too much into each day, struggling to find a balance between art-making, family, a job, and self-care. The overlapping is a carry over from every painting I've ever made. I'm trying to break loose of overworking and making so many more layers than are needed or ever seen. I turn the prints upside down and on their side, considering them not for their literal content but for their colors and shapes.
Roman murals, Giotto, Sassetta, Rubens, Tintoretto, Cezanne, Toulouse-Lautrec- if it looks good upside down, it can work.