Friday, May 24, 2013

At Once Within and Without

Studio life has been busy lately.  In fact, today I was looking about my apartment and realized that I have a live/work space, not an apartment at all.  There is no living functionality to the space for anyone but me.  For all that I try to convince people that my space is cozy, it is only cozy like a studio with an awesome couch in it.  That's pretty perfect for a single guy like me. 

This week my friend Shirah and I went to see The Great Gatsby.  I don't often go to movies and quite honestly I probably wouldn't have gone to this one if I hadn't had told Shirah I would go with her.  I am glad that I did though.  The movie wasn't great.  The female characters were poorly cast and I can't say that I am a fan of Fitzgerald's text being emblazoned on a movie screen, but the sets were amazing.  It was an incredible critique of Art Nouveou, racing economies, and hedonistic charm.  I returned from the movie and did what any self respecting person would do, I started reading the book again.  I am always taken by Fitzgerald's language.  To be sure the makers of the film were as well.  They made sure to use the exact line "at once within and without" in the parable that Callaway tells of the street cleaners.  This line is amazing.  I feel as though there is something in that line that much like a philosopher attempting to figure out the meaning of life, I am setting out to understand.  It is like fitting into society but having a ton of anxiety and never really letting on that you don't fit in at all.  It is holding your nose in your sketchbook seemingly disinterested in your surroundings but actually responding to every bit of it.  It is watching yourself from across the street in your schizophrenic coffee deranged early mornings.  It is something and probably absolutely nothing, which is kind of like art which is something but notably nothing.

I have been working out a commission for a very kind fellow who frequents Bard with me.  I had a certain idea of what the piece would look like in late November when I accepted his deposit, but that image has slowly drifted off into abandon.  I don't like it at all anymore.  And so yesterday when he was to meet me at my studio I began to make some connections, pieces began to fall in the right spots.  I was linking things wrong, but everything was starting to move.  I was feeling creative again and not pinned at all.  He postponed his visit, which didn't upset me.  I think I can finish the piece by his delayed date.  It seems much more natural now.  I was too far within the piece.  I needed to step out.  Here are a couple images of how it is beginning to come together.

 I do not know why, but this is my favorite piece that I have done in a long long time.  Perhaps I really like circles and I have never stopped to think about this immense obsession.

As I began to lay this piece out on the floor, it felt as though the conversation had finally shifted.  I am now speaking in a language that I comprehend rather than trying to translate from something foreign.  I can now say that it's going to be good.


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