I call this drawing “After Dine” because it is study of a drawing done by Jim Dine. Jim Dine is a major American artist who is famous for drawing/painting hearts and bathrobes, but it is his figure work that I love. Dine, after being successful as a pop artist, went to Europe and studied the figure for three years–he is a modern master of the figure and of the face. There is a long tradition in art of copying from other artists–it is one of the ways artists learn from other artists. Harold Bloom, in the “Anxiety of Influence”, talks about how poets are enthralled by master poets until they do a “misreading” of the master’s work–that is, they rewrite the poem but this time with their own, unique voice. All art is a revision of the art that went before it–nothing is entirely new. I learn a lot by doing master studies and, for me, it creates a sense of community–artists communicating with other artists across time. “After Dine” is a misreading of Jim Dine’s original drawing, a sketch of his wife, done in my own voice. Thanks Jim Dine!
The Beautiful Sadness is a paper drawing. The face and hair are colored pencil and I’m not happy with how it looks–its hard to draw from the imagination. Except for the background which is pastel the rest of the drawing are pieces of decorative paper. This was an experiment but I suppose all art is in the end an experiment.
Metastasis is a series about disease and how it tattoos the body. It is about distortion, disproportion and pattern. Anyone who suffers from and with chronic illness knows how much that illness changes who they are–both inside and outside. It takes courage to overcome an illness; it takes even more courage to live with a chronic condition. I started the series after taking a “Working in Series” class with Pam Lanza (someone who has been a mentor and an inspiration for me). The series started with this drawing and has continued to this day with a total of eight drawings. I think I’ll work on this series for the rest of my life because it calls to me in a very personal way. In some ways the first drawing has metastasized and spread into my hand and into my heart–the parts of me that make art. Thanks for visiting my blog.