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Saturday, October 12, 2013

Checking In


Checking in before checking out again. On Monday I'm off along with Katie to San Miguel de Allende for 23 days on a pilgrimage in paint with two wonderful groups of artists. The last item on my checklist is to show up here and share my latest.

Some time in August I decided to start a series of abstract painting studies. Because my studio is littered with papers, canvases, and general disorganizatiion, I decided to do the studies in my journal where they wouldn't get lost or tossed. And since these studies take me as long to do as a full sized painting (and for some reason are even more challenging) I've also cut back on the collage for awhile. So that each page resembles the spread in the first image. An abstract painting on the right side and morning pages on the left. 


I really let myself wander in these studies so they go from the okay to the very strange. It takes guts to leap into the chaos. That's how I'm thinking of them. My chaos paintings. 


I've been reluctant to share them. They are still talking to me; telling me things in their own language. But I finally decided it was time to share. To tell you of my great happiness of painting without any pressure to "succeed". Just letting the paint be paint and enjoying that.


As I look back at these paintings they appear effortless, as if I could dash off several a day. Probably some people could. But not me. I spend a lot of time painting over and experimenting. Often by the time I quit the paper can't take any more scrubbing and gouging. I like to explore.


I'm hoping by the time I've done many dozens that I will have learned new things. A direction or a message. They do seem like messages to me and sometimes I sit with them and have a dialogue. Perhaps this works only with our own paintings. Have you thought about this too?   


Does it matter if they speak to others as long as they speak to us?  


Is the work over when the painting is done or are there other things waiting to happen between the viewer and the object?


And what are we to make of our own paintings? What or who are they for? To sit quietly in a book on my shelf or to fetch a buyer in Santa Fe? Does it matter what my goals are and is there a difference? 


The more art I look at the more there is to think about. 


Paint and think. Think and paint.


Keep searching.


For that elusive thing.


That's always beyond one's reach.


But such a delicious search.


Such a complete obsession.


It's got me good.

I'll be back in November with a full report of our Mexico adventure. We will be 26 explorers plus Rebecca Brooks, Katie and myself. There will be eating and drinking and painting - oh my!!

Hasta la vista.

23 comments:

Gwen said...

I always love your paintings, Judy, but these are especially speaking to me. I love the scribbling, and I love what you wrote about them and the process.

You are very wise. And, no pun is intended!

Kathie Vezzani said...

See you soon, have a safe trip.

roc said...

judy...your blog posts always stir my soul. i love how you write, what you write about and how it makes me think. your art speaks volumes in it's own way - so beautiful, so deep and truly inspiring. thank you for the gift.

Amanda said...

Oh my but these are fabulous.

Saxongirl said...

Really inspiring. Many thanks for sharing your on-going journey

Tina said...

Oh I do love this collection. I'm crazy about the depth that comes with layers and layers.

Kathy said...

So perfectly stated! Your journal posts always make me want to pull out my altered book. Thank you for sharing.

dorylyn said...

Oh Judy, your work always speaks to me. So beautiful!

Clare Wassermann said...

Wow wonderful words and expression and energy in paint. I love this post. I want to go to this place in Mexico with you. Are you going next year or in 2015; remember I wanted to come as my 50th birthday present. Well hey it's next year!!

Judy Wise said...

Thank you my friends for you thoughtful comments. Next year I will be in Australia and Bali in October but perhaps in the future there will be another San Miguel adventure. It is a city I will return to as long as I'm able. xo

Michele said...

Greetings from Botswana and Godspeed for San Miguel! Have a wonderful time.

XOXO

Liz Hampton-Derivan Studio said...

Love your journal paintings. So free-spirited and beautiful. Your Mexico adventure sounds wonderful!!! Enjoy. Look forward to seeing the artwork and hearing about it in Noevember!

Mary Ann said...

your painting and thinking are v.v.v. Appealing. Wish I could meet you in the jardin some moonlit midnight on my steed. We could go for a gallop through town.
thinking of you
with love

Joan Tucker said...

Judy, have a wonderful time in Mexico.These paintings sing; they are loud and quiet and grand and small all sorts of voices emanating from them. a lifetime of
stuff. It must feel glorious to let go and just be with the process.You are an inspiration to many, certainly for me from a distance I get fed ideas, courage, spirit. Thank you. Gratefully, Joan Tucker

Bren Thebeau said...

Love the essence of this new series of studies. The rich and varied pallets, the explorations of symbol and gesture. Very moving and inspiring

Chris said...

Hi Judy! There is a lot to think about, isn't there. All this "play" will at some point work its way into "work". I love that nothing we do is wasted or for nothing. I love your pages. Expressive...and all those luscious layers! xo Have fun in Mexico!

Kim Mailhot said...

That dialogue, that search, that play, that adventure, that life...oh so sweet.

Have a wonderful time in Mexico, Brave and Brilliant Blue eyed Girl !

wanda miller said...

FANTASTIC POST!!! EXPERIMENTING AND SHOW AND TELL...THE BEST EVER!!! gives others permission and imagination to do the same...and nothing can come out better, than playing and letting it fly! GRAND POST! love

Fran Rees said...

Judy, I'm so glad you put these paintings up on your blog. I've been missing your art expressions both visually and in words! I love these abstracts: to me they are both rich and playful, pondering and blustering both. I know I will go back and look at them again and again and enjoy the various things I see and hear in them. You are an encouragement! Enjoy Mexico and keep expressing your beauty in art!!
Fran

Dawn said...

I love them! They make me want to play in my journal again.

Anonymous said...

they are gorgeous....have no doubt about it....xo

jennifer notar said...

I love your work and the way you articulate your path. Beautiful.

Leah Campbell Badertscher said...

Judy, I just found your site and have it bookmarked after taking in just one post! Your work is beautiful. I've been playing with taking my painting in different directions and your playfulness and freedom in these pieces is illuminating and inspiring. I also love how you articulate your process as you go. Thank you for sharing - I'm so glad i found your work! Thank you!