2 paintings, oil on canvas, 50 x 70 cm each, 2021
What is it to Dwell? How does building belong to Dwelling? (Heidegger)
These Landscapes are based on Artifice and Appropriation. Take the most generic image of landscape, an idyllic picture made by someone who has never seen a landscape. There is a snow-topped mountain, a lake, a few fir trees, and an architecturally impossible cabin with a thatched roof. No place like this exists. For centuries, I think since the first painting ever, people have tried to represent their environment and its characters: animals, plants, and themselves. The artifice of representation is the nature of painting. Two-dimensional representation of three-dimensional space is only one problem—we must add to it the dilemma of scientific accuracy and the problem of poetic complexity. The visage of geography, like the any identity, is built of many layers. Artists work, as they have for millennia, to unite the temporal, spatial, sensual, scientific, ontological, and spiritual aspects of their surroundings.
These paintings begin with a supposition, that art is artifice, and often a perfect Platonic disaster. My feeling is, “if they exist, they are perfect” most of the time, so my painted intervention is only a transparency over something not quite real. The point is not to obscure but rather to unfold, to unravel, the history of color in person and place. The knots tie together the painting’s past to its future, in the key of a color: umber, sienna, ochre.