Saturday, July 11, 2009

La Paloma

Pablo Picasso has been famously quoted as saying something like, "To paint a dove, one must first wring its neck." I always thought it must have something to do with his cubist style, but in a broader sense, we all do that when we paint. Even the most realistic, sensitive works are about taking something's essence and turning it into something else - a painting. And, in the end, the painting has to survive or fail on its own merits. Two dimensions and a limited palette (they're *all* limited) is all you get, regardless of how dynamic & fascinating the subject matter that stands in front of your easel.

The payoff is that you have an experience (probably a learning experience), a souvenir and something you can share (even down through the generations). And, of course, the ultimate payoff is your increased awareness and facility. The qualities that you see in front of you eventually become part of you.


Lei Iverson said...

Or is it taking "something's essence" and turning it into our own essence as we experience the same moment of time and give our own energy to it. And why would it have to "survive or fall", can't it just be... a product of that moment. Yes, "the increased awareness and facility" do "become a part of you." And in a sense we become a part of it.

lady guerrilla painter said...

Thanks, Lei, that's a good thought, "a product of that moment." I like that.