Sunday, January 11, 2015

New Paintings for Bausch & Lomb Show

Over the holiday break, I delivered 10 paintings to the Bausch & Lomb headquarters on N. Goodman St in Rochester for a show there. I am proud to be shown among quite a number of Rochester artists who are doing exciting work. I painted these 5 paintings between Thanksgiving and New Year's. Whew!

Strange Bedfellows IV
24" H x 28" W
oil on canvas
Coming of Spring
24" H x 28" W
acrylic on canvas
New Directions24" H x 28" W
oil on canvas
22" H x 30" W
oil on canvas
What the Thunder Said
24" H x 28" W
oil on canvas
To purchase any of these or others from previous posts, please email me at: Thanks!

Sunday, June 1, 2014

A few more paintings

Strange Bedfellows 3
oil on canvas

29” h x 41.5” w
Strange Bedfellows 2
oil on canvas

21” h x 25” w

oil on canvas

21” h x 17” w

Thursday, May 29, 2014

Outtakes from AP Art History

Now that the year is nearly over, I can state fairly categorically that I survived my first experience of teaching art history. Grueling and exciting by turns, it was overall positive and I think I was successful in making it more engaging than the first art history course I took. Here are a couple of highlights:

Poor Andrew!

After the AP exam 3 weeks ago, I wanted them to try out some of the ancient media. Our first project was egg tempera paint.

Madonna of the Long Neck
by Parmigianino
Madonna with the Big Head
by Andrew DeNatale

Monday, May 26, 2014

Ground, background, grounded.

After a show is hung is a great time to reflect on what the paintings are saying. With these paintings, as I said, I didn’t really know where they were taking me, so now I'm finding that I’m learning a lot by listening to them. I’ve been thinking about the ground. It is literally the ground—looking straight down at it from a satellite. And the regular patterns are grounding, as is nature for humans. 

And then there is another level, which is “the ground” in Buddhism. From Kuntuzangpo’s prayer:

Everything — appearance and existence, samsara and nirvana —

Has a single Ground, yet two paths and two fruitions,

And magically displays as Awareness or unawareness.

So we make our own experience. The ground is there with all of the material for us to put together: emotions, interactions, jobs, people, good drivers, bad drivers, grumpy or friendly store clerks, capsized sailboats or smooth sailing, good weather or bad. It’s up to us to interpret according to our beliefs and to structure our experience into pleasure or pain.

Saturday, May 24, 2014

Installation at the Little Theatre

It's finally up! My walls at home are naked now that everything has moved to the cafe. Stop by and see the show any time the theatre is open. It's up until June 21st.
My helpers...Kathy
and "Sticky Fingers Sophia"
Putting up labels

Friday, May 23, 2014


Writing titles always comes last for me. One of the things to do the night before the show (like now!) Sometimes they are obvious and automatic. Other times, it's a struggle to decide how much to reveal; how much room to leave for the viewer to read between the lines. I always like statements and titles that are more poetry and less postmodern jibber-jabber.

When I'm teaching, I always tell my kids to get their friends to tell them what their piece reminds them of. Make a list of words and phrases and then combine the ones that appeal to them in interesting ways. And that's how I started out myself this time. I began jotting down words and phrases about a week ago and sat down tonight to combine and recombine. I try not to do too much with the thesaurus looking for erudite phrasing, but I do treat it a little like collage. Some words (like intertwining, piercing and appendage) end up cut into bits on the floor, while others come together into unexpected juxtapositions, thus: Avian Geometries.

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

In Process

It always happens as I get near a show, that my work space starts to take over the rest of the house! Here I've taken over the kitchen table for the last painting. Looking forward to eating in the kitchen again soon!

Sunday, May 18, 2014

Not that I don't like birds!

They're gorgeous. A joy to paint. The colors. The feathers. And especially the eyes. The beaks. Their slickness.
24" x 30"
oil on canvas
But the eyes. Some so big, some small. Amazing how unstandardized they are when ours are so standard. Colors that would never appear in human eyes.

And with camouflage patterns around the eyes to disguise their shape. Probably some message to predators.

Friday, May 16, 2014

Little Theatre Show

Sometimes I start to paint or make a sculpture without knowing what it’s about. And I often think that it’s my hands which know and make without letting my conscious mind in on the secret until much, much later in the process. That has been the case with this series of paintings.

Bird's Eye View
17” h x 21” w, framed
oil on canvas
What I do know is that I have always been intrigued by the patterns of crop circles and farm fields when flying over the mid-section of the country on my way home from my sister’s house in Colorado. Especially in western Kansas, the landscape is geometric: full of circles, squares, stripes. As my trips are nearly always around the holidays, the colors are usually a mix of snowy pastels.

Avian Geometry II
17” h x 21” w, framed
oil on canvas
There is something that makes my heart beat faster to see the interaction of the natural and the man-made, circular geometries interacting with miles of wiggling rivers or untamable terrain. Pac-man half-circles eating up shrubbery-looking (from miles above) forested mountains.
Camouflaged Paradox
17” h x 21” w, framed
oil on canvas

These landscapes, along with my birds, have become metaphors for an interior landscape representing the tensions inherent in all relationships. The interactions of people unconscious of their effects on others. The push-pull. The give and take. Poking and pestering. Non-stop wood-peckering. 

17” h x 21” w, framed
oil on canvas
The paintings lead. I follow.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Sophia blending pastels

The girls made beautiful pastel drawings of tools yesterday. It was a bit more difficult than the previous drawings they did, but they enjoyed it anyway, especially because we added color!

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Watercolor in the Water!

My students drawing the landscape at Lake Como, Italy.

Drawing On the Way to Italy

Delayed 2 hours in the Rochester airport. What to do but draw? They drew each other and the cool Bill Stewart sculptures. 

Impromptu crit :-)
Nick, Galen, Robbie